Don’t leave me outside!

When arguing, we should keep our cool. But, what can I do? I’m a human being: I insult, I fuss, I sleep, I eat, I burp, and I get annoyed about certain subjects. I’m so utterly fed up with Internet Explorer 7 that I won’t stop until they give me what I want. Blake Ross, a twentysomething guy and one of the founders of Firefox, provides a milder argument about the use of Firefox than mine:

People ask me, “Well, gee, if IE7 is starting to catch up to Firefox, and if they’ve got their hand back in development right now, and eventually they might actually catch up to Firefox in terms of features, what’s the benefit of using Firefox? Why are you guys still around if you say that your only goal is just to make the Web a better place?”

My answer to that is, how much can you really trust a company that five years ago completely left you abandoned? If they do, in fact, succeed in taking back some of the market share that Firefox has gotten back from them, who’s to say that they’re not going to disappear again? My issue is not so much at a product level; it’s at a company level. How do you trust a company that left everyone out in the cold for five years?

That, my friends, is a very important point. So important that it is worrying. That is why we use the best for Tractis: free software. We don’t depend on ASP, .NET or any corporate economic or functional ties. Imagine we use Microsoft’s databases. To feel completely at home, we continue to use Microsoft material. Why not use .NET and MSHTML and why not other things? In two years’ time, Microsoft decides to eliminate .NET or, even better, not update .Net or any other development platform simply because they’ve launched something new. Will Microsoft give away all that software so that non-Microsoft people can continue with it? The answer is NO. In this case, we’d be in dire straits:

  1. We’ll have to spend more money on new versions of development software.
  2. We’ll have to update servers so that the new software can run decently.
  3. We’ll have to change and rewrite many things, bugs will come back.
  4. We’ll have to correct the new development’s bugs.
  5. We’ll have to save money for Microsoft’s next move.

No. I don’t think anyone is interested in using software that is not updated because of a company. I don’t think that it’s a good thing for a company to sit around waiting for a bug to be solved when a new function has been added. In the same way, I don’t want a browser that, when it’s launched like that, will remain in the same place for another five years.

And Firefox is not like a GNU/Linux distribution, it’s not a green product and it does not lack anything. It’s a well-finished product and considerably superior to Internet Explorer in terms of features and support. The same goes for other browsers: Safari, Opera, etc. They are at least as good as Microsoft and they have nothing to fear because they’re not competing.

It’s a pity because the version of our software rewards all the people who use browsers that support the standards. Those who continue with IE will have to wait until Microsoft gets up to date with that task. We can’t change the source code of Internet Explorer to improve your user experience.

By Diego Lafuente
Saved in: Technology | Comments Off | 3 July 2006

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