Internet Explorer 9 is the best HTML5 browser!

By crisp on Tuesday 2 November 2010 22:54 - Comments (26)
Categories: Browsers, Tweakers.net, Views: 19.763

Yes, really, look for yourself! It's the official result of the W3C HTML5 Test Suite!

Of course, we at Tweakers.net already knew that. We have even dedicated a special page to Internet Explorer 9 and all its goodness and have 'optimized' some of our very own site-features for IE9 (see the two demo's at the bottom of the showcase page). And now even W3C declares IE9 (latest platform preview version) the most HTML5 compliant browser available at this date!

Already a lot of websites are running the story on this great and historical feat. I wonder why Tweakers.net hasn't covered this awesome story yet, maybe I should poke some editors...

But wait, could there maybe be something wrong with those results? This message and several others posted today on the W3C HTML test suite mailing list do suggest that this test suite isn't exactly ready for prime time and can hardly be considered 'official'. There are indeed several things noticeable:

First of all it's the list of browsers that have been tested. For IE9 the developer platform version 6 is listed; this is the latest IE9 preview version which was announced a few days ago at the Professional Developer Conference in Redmond. It must have been very important to Microsoft that this version be used for this test suite since the IE9 test run shows a timestampthat is earlier than the announcement of its availability at the PDC. Also see how IE9 scores a full 100% on the 'xhtml5' feature; today's blogpost on XHTML support in IE9 can't really be a coincidence.

Also it should be noted that for every major browser the latest available beta or alpha version was used except for Safari which lists the current stable version.

Then there is the fact that this test suite only covers a small portion of html 5 and related specifications. The tests themselves are quite comprehensive in detail but lack many important areas of 'html 5' such as Web Workers, drag-and-drop and the File API. Surprisingly these are also areas that IE9 does not support. Or if you look at it from the other side: the test suite only covers areas that IE9 does support. How come?

Well, for starters it seems that a lot (most?) of the tests are actually created and submitted to the W3C by Microsoft itself, and of course Microsoft doesn't have much reason to create test cases for things they do not plan to support (yet). And just maybe Microsoft is also directing its development somewhat in order to look good in (these) specific tests.

Now the fact that Microsoft, like with CSS2.1, submits so many tests - as far as I can tell more than any other W3C participant - poses another interesting question: will this eventually result in the W3C test suites becoming biased towards Microsoft's implementation? This HTML5 test suite, although incomplete and by no means official yet (contrary to what it says on the results page itself), does seem to suggest that this will be the case unless other browser vendors will start cranking out many test cases as well...

Volgende: A moment of reflection 11-'10 A moment of reflection
Volgende: Do you have javascript disabled? 10-'10 Do you have javascript disabled?

Comments


By Tweakers user bobwarley, Tuesday 2 November 2010 23:06

Internet Explorer 9 is the best HTML5 browser!
You're wrong. It didn't say IE9 was the best HTML5-browser. It said it's the most compatible HTML5-browser. Btw, how well does IE9 support HTML4, that's what 99% of the web is. For me IE9 is not the best HTML5-browser, because I don't like its UI and Microsoft really.

[Comment edited on Tuesday 2 November 2010 23:12]


By Tweakers user GrooV, Tuesday 2 November 2010 23:10

bobwarley wrote on Tuesday 02 November 2010 @ 23:06:
[...]


You're wrong. It didn't say IE9 was the best HTML5-browser. It said it's the most compatible HTML5-browser.
It said that for the tested functionality in that test, IE9 is the best browser

By Tweakers user MMaI, Tuesday 2 November 2010 23:13

Unfortunately the preview isnt pushed that far yet, as the main public is still stuck on the beta, which has a load of bugs. For instance looking at lightbox features, ajax loading scripts etc. are all broken on this version. By simple testing on the platform preview 6, these features are still broken.

As on yet another critical sidenote, the points that all other browsers score 0-10% on, are the test exclusively generated by microsoft for testing. These tests are no complete overview of the standard, as XHTML5 is not final yet.

If we look at the more genrally accepted ACID/HTML5test (html5test.com) the general impression drops by a few feet, as IE9 is still stuck on 95/106, where most contenders score 100 / 200. (ACID/html5test). Even FF3.6.14 scores 139 points...

[Comment edited on Tuesday 2 November 2010 23:27]


By Tweakers user Jory, Tuesday 2 November 2010 23:24

MMal, did you even read the whole article. Crisp spends most of the text criticizing the test, saying a large part of the tests came from MS, telling us they aren't using the latest version of all browsers, stating the test only tests a subset of HTML5.

By Tweakers user crisp, Tuesday 2 November 2010 23:24

It seems the irony in the first part of my post is lost on some people :P

By Tweakers user MMaI, Tuesday 2 November 2010 23:27

crisp wrote on Tuesday 02 November 2010 @ 23:24:
It seems the irony in the first part of my post is lost on some people :P
my bad, Ill correct the comment, missed out your irony on the first sentences 8)7 O-)

[Comment edited on Tuesday 2 November 2010 23:29]


By Tweakers user CodeCaster, Tuesday 2 November 2010 23:33

crisp wrote on Tuesday 02 November 2010 @ 23:24:
It seems the irony in the first part of my post is lost on some people :P
You just proved that most repliers simply read the title, enter their unimportant opinion and hit 'Submit'. :)

By Tweakers user YopY, Tuesday 2 November 2010 23:35

Thing with tests like these is that 99.9% of them cover only up to 80% of actually relevant things (figures selected at random). Getting a 'pass' or 'fail' at one specific test does not automatically mean that the passing browser actually supports the feature, but only that it passes that specific test. Same goes for the ACID tests, for example - getting a 100% score on a CSS3 site does not automatically mean website A looks like it's supposed to.

Microsoft may not have the best browser out there. But they do have the best marketing team out there.

However, I still kinda think it's odd Microsoft does marketing for IE. I mean... Besides the integration with their own search engines (which was only introduced in IE 7 and beyond), they won't be making any money off of it. Same goes for Firefox, but I guess they're a charity organization and the few bucks they do make goes to the regular guys that work at the organization, while volunteers do the brunt of the work required (out of idealism also).

Google's somewhere in the middle, I believe - On the one hand they're idealistic, creating a semi-open source browser with a base premise of enhancing the user's internet experience with a very fast browser and some other stuffs. On the other, they're in it for the money - faster internet means more page views means more ad impressions on the ever-prevalent google ads means more income for Google.

...But to be honest, I kinda like Google for those idealistic things. Yeah, privacy and all, but as far as I know, there haven't been any leaked data since I got my first Google account with Gmail years ago, the incident with Google's Streetview cars harvesting internet traffic being the first actual case I can recall.

Anyways, ranting here, should chuck it onto my own blog and get lol'd at, but can't be arsed. @topic, behold Microsoft's marketing machines. Still, the W3C's a public organization, Microsoft is just as free to 'steer' it as the other members are - Google, for example, would be free to add tests to make its browser look better.

imho, they should add a codec to HTML5's video / audio tags and make it final at last.

By Tweakers user MMaI, Tuesday 2 November 2010 23:37

CodeCaster wrote on Tuesday 02 November 2010 @ 23:33:
[...]

You just proved that most repliers simply read the title, enter their unimportant opinion and hit 'Submit'. :)
actually I read the first two alinea's, then got myself worked up and started typing, after that I read the last two alinea's and had my worries confirmed, ignorant of the fact that the part between those two stages had somewhat context altering content ;) my dearest apologies :p
mea culpa, mea maxima culpa

[Comment edited on Tuesday 2 November 2010 23:42]


By Tweakers user Battle Bunny, Tuesday 2 November 2010 23:58

En weer krijgt IE9 aandacht, ook al met wat sarcasme. Wanneer krijgen we eindelijk zo'n gave "Best viewed with Internet Explorer 9 at 1024x768" balk?

By Tweakers user Haijo, Wednesday 3 November 2010 00:00

Good article!

One typo though:

It must have been very imported to Microsoft

should be

It must have been very important to Microsoft

:)

By Tweakers user Wes, Wednesday 3 November 2010 00:13

crisp wrote on Tuesday 02 November 2010 @ 23:24:
It seems the irony in the first part of my post is lost on some people :P
You have to admit that was just a matter of time, especially with you being the author of the .plan which announces the IE9 ad (where ad is short for advertorial).

As for the rest of your post, well, I can't say I'm surprised really, given Microsoft's trackrecord with complying with standards. Yeah ok, I'll admit it was a matter of time before someone said that as well. So sue me. :p

By Tweakers user RobIII, Wednesday 3 November 2010 00:28

Let me begin with saying that I do think IE9 is on a good (maybe even the right) track and it looks promising. I can't help but dreaming of an IE-hell-less web :P

I think the best point in your blog is:
unless other browser vendors will start cranking out many test cases as well
And my question would be: why is it that other vendors don't submit (as much) tests? Surely they use internal tests, these could be formalized and submitted to the W3C?

By Paul Irish, Wednesday 3 November 2010 00:43

Spot on coverage. :) Cheers, Crisp!

As for the coverage of the actual test suite.. Ian Hickson, editor of the HTML5 spec, just said it doesn't even cover 0.1% of API surface area.

http://lists.w3.org/Archi...stsuite/2010Nov/0007.html

By Tweakers user Maurits van Baerle, Wednesday 3 November 2010 08:13

AppleInsider has published a comprehensive analysis of this story with rather interesting comments from various heavyweights within W3C.

W3C publishes "extremely silly" HTML5 test results suggesting win for Internet Explorer 9

[Comment edited on Wednesday 3 November 2010 08:15]


By Tweakers user Osxy, Wednesday 3 November 2010 08:15

After your first part I was about to stop reading until I realised that it's Crisp writing, Crisp and this overly positive about IE? That's not possible.

Nice write up =)

By Tweakers user riddles, Wednesday 3 November 2010 08:30

I must say that after seeing the IE9 showcase on tweakers.net yesterday, I started to read the article with some serious concerns, but glad to see they were addressed in the content of the article :).

By Tweakers user GewoonWatSpulle, Wednesday 3 November 2010 08:44

bobwarley wrote on Tuesday 02 November 2010 @ 23:06:
For me IE9 is not the best HTML5-browser, because I don't like its UI and Microsoft really.
I don't like your clothing and don't like your parents so.. I don't like you!, it's not the clothing that does the work and not who made it. It's what you do..

I think IE9 is ahead of FireFox since it's not starting anytime soon.. has a "huge" top bar and forms title bar which takes up about 30 pixels for showing things you rarely read.

I think IE9 for once started out well, now it's up to Microsoft to keep it this way and not introduce all kinds of quirks.

By Tweakers user crisp, Wednesday 3 November 2010 09:34

GewoonWatSpulle wrote on Wednesday 03 November 2010 @ 08:44:
[...]
I think IE9 is ahead of FireFox since it's not starting anytime soon.. has a "huge" top bar and forms title bar which takes up about 30 pixels for showing things you rarely read.
What exactly do you mean? I think Firefox 4 will hit the streets before IE9 will become final, and from what I've seen it will outperform IE9 by a margin.

And as a power user I like the 'huge' topbar; I like to have my options in view and have enough room for tabs. It's just the stupid move to 16:9 panels for consumer computer displays that is forcing browservendors to make their topbars ridiculously small... Fortunately I have big screens :)

By Tweakers user i-chat, Wednesday 3 November 2010 12:19

And as a power user I like the 'huge' topbar; I like to have my options in view and have enough room for tabs. It's just the stupid move to 16:9 panels for consumer computer displays that is forcing browservendors to make their topbars ridiculously small... Fortunately I have big screens :)
same goes for me to, 16;9 really IS flawed (for me), i would really like to get my hands on a 16:10 instead - i know it will save only so little pixels but it might be just enought.

i think that ubuntu did a great thing with its (unity) gui - except for the ridiculous integrated compositing-windows (the hardware rendering openGL 3 / DX11 like crap)

but in trueth its idiocy to think that its the way it should be for desktops.
i wonder what figures you would get if you would mesure the human eye.
im pretty shure that you wont get 4:3 but im also rather possitive that it isn't 16:9
in my personal experience its probably near 16;10 i wonder what other people think ...

but than again this 'interface design' is hardly ontoppic for the htm5 complience test.

what's already been asked but still verry interesting: why dont other browser vendors release these kinds of specs-tests. its a valid point if you said that they dont want to untill the html5 is cleared, they may be afraid to loose grip or respect from the others if they do. or are they affraid of microsoft for one or other reason.

anyhow it makes you wonder, maybe crips you could poke around and have tweakers.net do a background story on this. t.net afterall is not just any tech-site and if any media could get certain people to talk it might as well be you guys.

By Tweakers user Spesh, Wednesday 3 November 2010 12:27

crisp wrote on Wednesday 03 November 2010 @ 09:34:
[...]

What exactly do you mean? I think Firefox 4 will hit the streets before IE9 will become final, and from what I've seen it will outperform IE9 by a margin.

And as a power user I like the 'huge' topbar; I like to have my options in view and have enough room for tabs. It's just the stupid move to 16:9 panels for consumer computer displays that is forcing browservendors to make their topbars ridiculously small... Fortunately I have big screens :)
Ik heb die hele hype van 16:9 panels nooit echt begrepen, voor een film is het leuk maar wie kijkt er nou films op zijn pc? Voor een film ga je gewoon lekker achter de TV zitten. Vooral op laptops is de 16:9 verhouding een ramp, probeer maar eens een laptop te vinden voor een redelijke prijs met een hogere resolutie dan 1366x768, die resolutie is voor normaal werk onbruikbaar en je zit de gekste dingen uit te halen om de topbar zo klein mogelijk te maken om het enigszins bruikbaar te houden maar het blijft veel te klein en je word bijna verplicht om er een externe monitor aan te hangen wat het voordeel van een laptop teniet doet. Gelukkig heb ik thuis al 6 jaar een 1600x1200 scherm wat perfect is voor browsen, ik hou namelijk ook van een brede topbar met veel tools, ik heb al rond zitten kijken maar met bijna geen enkel scherm ga ik erop vooruit qua resolutie, met de i1080 schermen ga ik er zelfs op achteruit. Of ik moet een 27 inch of groter nemen maar ik heb geen behoefte aan zo'n groot scherm op mijn bureau, ik wil nu een 2e 1600x1200 erbij nemen maar helaas zijn die schermen erg zeldzaam geworden en de prijzen van 1600x1200 schermen zijn niet in verhouding.

[Comment edited on Wednesday 3 November 2010 12:31]


By Tweakers user MMaI, Wednesday 3 November 2010 19:01

pssst, geheimpje, 16:9 panelen zijn gewoon goedkoper te maken ;) 1680x1050 zijn meer pixels dan 1600x900, waardoor er uit één displayplaat enkele displays meer gehaald kunnen worden. Er is geen enkel zinvol argument om naar 16:9 te gaan imho (behalve dan het financiele aspect voor bedrijven)

[Comment edited on Wednesday 3 November 2010 19:02]


By Tweakers user Woet, Thursday 18 November 2010 21:46

I do hope this post, especially the first bit is sarcasm. Internet explorer remains the biggest nightmare for developers and I'm sure it will include more features to upset us closer to release (aka IE8 with it's great standards compliance).

Also, be sure to include this piece of code in your incredibly fancy image previewer. I'm sure Microsoft will appreciate it, it's completely enhanced for IE 9 :)

[Comment edited on Thursday 18 November 2010 22:01]


By Tweakers user crisp, Thursday 18 November 2010 22:04

Woet: If you knew me even just a little you wouldn't have to wonder wether I was being ironical/sarcastic or not ;)

By Tweakers user Woet, Thursday 18 November 2010 22:16

crisp wrote on Thursday 18 November 2010 @ 22:04:
Woet: If you knew me even just a little you wouldn't have to wonder wether I was being ironical/sarcastic or not ;)
I was just making sure.. :) You should still chain yourself to the servers and demand the advertising for IE to be removed.

[Comment edited on Thursday 18 November 2010 22:29]


By Tweakers user crisp, Thursday 18 November 2010 23:28

Woet wrote on Thursday 18 November 2010 @ 22:16:
[...]


I was just making sure.. :) You should still chain yourself to the servers and demand the advertising for IE to be removed.
I (or better: Tweakers/VNU) get paid to play around with their toy-browser, and afterwards I can still write critical blogposts, what's not to like about that? :P (I do intend to write an in-depth post on IE9 soon). Besides, a lot of testcases on the IE9 showcase work even better in other browsers, how's that for advertising (especially when you're stuck on winXP)? :P

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