Will 2008 be the year of the standards compliant browser?

Microsoft announced yesterday on the Internet Explorer blog that the next version of Internet Explorer (IE8) will correctly render the Acid2 test page. See the excellent Channel 9 video for more.

The Acid2 test is a test of a browser’s ability to properly render CSS and HTML. From the Acid2 Wikipedia page:

The Acid2 test should render correctly on any browser that follows the W3C HTML and CSS 2.0 specifications. Any browser which does not correctly and completely support all of the features which Acid2 uses will not render the page correctly.

Apple’s Safari passed the Acid2 test in October 2005!

Firefox 3 is expected to pass the Acid2 test as well when it is released (beta 2 already does). Internet Explorer 8 is due to ship in the first half of 2008, as is Firefox 3 so it looks as if 2008 will be the year of the standards compliant browser!

Ironically the official Acid2 web page is broken today (!) but it is mirrored on one of the developers sites so you can test your current browser there.

9 thoughts on “Will 2008 be the year of the standards compliant browser?”

  1. Nobody is fully standards compliant but this is good news for web-devs and web-users alike. IE8 should get some good distribution through Microsoft update, something that Firefox, Opera and even Safari can’t parallel.

  2. As an Opera user I am annoyed that Google Groups doesn’t support it…. I have to use (ugh) IE…. is this covered by the Acid Test?

  3. The practicality of the Acid2 test is pretty thin, barry. Your browser may be a genius and pass the test but it may then fail miserably in the real world.

    You also have to take into account that, for instance, Google.com doesn’t even validate. Most Google HTML/CSS code isn’t built to pass validation but is built to serve users with buggy browsers (the “real world”.) Passing the Acid2 test is no guarantee of anything.

    I am still glad they did it though. It just won’t herald overnight change in the web 🙂

  4. i don’t know but safari n IE but for me, since i’m using firefox, my PC is less attacked by those malware and i seldom has problem with internet…i might just stick with firefox lol

  5. I don’t know. As an IT guy I’ve had to beat my head against non-standardisms all the time.

    Sure, it will pass a particular test, and maybe the browsers will finally start to display the same code in something approaching the same manner, but is it going to be extended and have additional features that no other browser supports?

    Microsoft has traditionally been the company that has worked to subvert and pervert any standards that it does not control and define.

    I won’t even get into the issue of bugs…

    Anyway, not to sound too jaded, but it is progress. Now all we have to do is wait years until enough people have upgraded. Then, at some point, when the vast majority of visitors are compliant, we can start to rely on it!

    Okay. I am jaded. 🙂

  6. Acid2 test is one of internet leading test. Not sure what IE8 will do, but IE6 or even IE 7 has security hole.
    I am currently using Mozilla Firefox, which eliminate spyware threat but I don’t think IE has that ability yet. But IE8 invention, may be I will give it a try sometime.
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