I’m Going to Enjoy Writing Code for Internet Explorer 9 (I Can’t Believe I Just Typed Those Words)

In case you missed it the latest Internet Explorer 9 Platform Preview is out and it’s a thing of beauty. It added Canvas support so the first thing I did was run it through some demo code. It’s faster than Chrome. Visibly faster. No benchmarks needed. It’s such an incredible difference from the current Internet Explorer family which are many times slower than the good browsers out there.

The good news doesn’t stop there. There’s actual standards support.

PPK enthuses:

In the past few days I’ve been revising the CSS compatibility table with information about the latest crop of browsers. There’s no doubt about it: this is IE9’s show. It just supports nearly everything. No hassle, no buts.

And then enthuses some more:

Well, I’ve revised the DOM CSS and the DOM CSS OM tables, too, and IE9 continues its march. It supports the standards!

Let’s be more specific. The following methods or properties were not supported by IE8 or lower, but are supported by IE9:

  • getComputedStyle()
  • cssRules[] (in addition to the proprietary rules[])
  • deleteRule() and insertRule() (in addition to the proprietary addRule() and removeRule())
  • innerWidth/Height and pageX/YOffset (!!!). Ever since the Browser Wars IE has refused to support these originally Netscape-proprietary properties, but IE9 supports them.
  • pageX/Y (!!!). Back in 2002 I complained that IE didn’t give us the opportunity to read out the coordinates of a click event relative to the HTML document. Now IE9 finally gives us what we need.

He’s not the only one enthusing:

The big news is that IE9pre3 has (almost) full support for ES5. By “full support”, I mean that it implements majority of new API, such as Object.create, Object.defineProperty, String.prototype.trim, Array.isArray, Date.now, and many other additions. As of now, IE9 implements the largest number of new methods; even more than latest Chrome, Safari and Firefox. Unbelievable, isn’t it? :)

I know people hate Microsoft. I know Internet Explorer (especially 6) has caused a lot of pain over the past few years. I get it. Thing is, a lot of people still use IE as their main browser, so seeing movement like this towards standards and performance by the Internet Explorer team gets me excited for the future.

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