Happy birthday, Internet Explorer 6

The date is August 27th 2001. The internet is still in its infancy. Along comes Internet Explorer 6, the latest offering from Microsoft. Like anything technology based, it’s shelf life is shorter than a loaf of bread. Blink, and it’s gone off.

Well, here we are, it’s 2009, and we are nearing Internet Explorer 6’s eighth birthday.

No, that’s not a typo. Eight years. Seriously, supermarkets don’t even have tins on the shelf that long!

As any web developer or designer will tell you, daily, working with IE 6 is one of the most frustrating things they have to deal with. Not only does it use up valuable time but causes a whole world of pain for the business, clients, staff and most importantly, your finances.

In a web era that requires quick turnaround, accessability and increasingly exacting web standards, IE 6 cannot keep up.

So, have Microsoft done anything about this?

Yes… And no. They developed IE 7 and most recently IE 8 but have made little effort to push these newer, more compliant browsers to the end user. And, to make matters worse, Microsoft has just extended it’s support of IE 6 to 2014!

To combat this, a campaign, ie6nomore.com, has been started by a host of websites and industry experts to attempt to push the web and Microsoft into the present. Also, many modern sites such as Facebook and Digg have ceased to support the dinosaur that is IE and display polite "Upgrade your browser" messages instead.

So, I urge you entrepreneurs and small business owners, push Internet Explorer into the future. Press the upgrade button.Mike Simmonds is lead developer at Caspian Publishing.

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