May 28th, 2014, 18:28 PM
Microsoft goes public with browser development plans
Aiming to provide more transparency in how it develops Internet Explorer, Microsoft has launched a website to help keep developers abreast of the latest changes and plans for the browser.
This site aims to put IE on similar ground with Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome, which are open-source projects, so given the public nature of their development, details about pending technologies are known early on by third-party developers.
The Internet Explorer Web Platform Status and Roadmap provides information on which Web technologies and standards are supported by the browser, and which Microsoft is currently considering for future editions.
Historically speaking, Web developers have tended to view IE as the most closed of the browsers, given the relative paucity of information provided by Microsoft about the technologies and standards it would support. This could be problematic when a developer wanted to use a new Web standard but would hold back until it was known that IE would support that standard.
While withholding details about new features in an upcoming software release has been the norm for software providers such as Microsoft, Web developers have preferred lots of details early on in the development process of their software, so they can write apps to use these new features as soon as possible, or know not to use a standard should it not be widely supported across different browsers.
“The current list of features ‘in development’ is not an exhaustive representation of what we will deliver in the next version, but an indication of what we currently have highest confidence in delivering,” wrote Sam George, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer partner group program manager, in a blog post announcing the launch.