Okay, I lied. One more for 2007, but only because this is an early Christmas present from Microsoft, and when was the last time you got one of those?
For as much crap as I’ve given the IE team over the years, I have to say I’m really happy with the path they’re on after reading this today. Rendering the Acid2 test correctly is a huge leap forward (“IE8 Standards Mode” or not).
Last year, IE7 wasn’t nearly the big expansive update I’d have hoped, but the improvements they made hit all the right notes for me at the time. They seemed genuinely concerned about the problems that made our lives harder, and took steps to correct them. And testing against IE7 has been more good than bad; it’s rare to get something working in Firefox and Safari that blows up in IE7. At most a few glitches here and there have required a bit of fixing, but nothing that has sucked away an entire afternoon like certain other past versions. (Now if they could just make IE6 go away once and for all, then we’d really be on to something…)
Using the past updates as a starting point and extrapolating, I’ve been cautiously optimistic that IE8 would deliver much more of the same. The lack of news hadn’t really been bugging me until I realized a few months ago that, oh yeah, they have been pretty silent lately haven’t they? No doubt last week’s legal proceedings have something to do with the timing, but today I think we’re seeing the first signs of what I’d been hoping, and the associated video suggests there’s more to be revealed.
Obviously Acid2 is just one test, and there are other technologies that will become more and more relevant in the coming years. HTML5, CSS3, and SVG come to mind. But for the first reveal of what we can expect from the new browser, this is a welcome start.