By Louis Lazaris

Real World HTML5 & CSS3 in Internet Explorer 9

By Louis Lazaris

In the world around us, people want solutions to their problems. They want to use stuff that works and they want to get things done quickly and efficiently. But more importantly, they want to be able to focus on the things that really matter.

As web developers building apps and websites in the real world, we desire that the code we work with is the same—that is, we want our code to be efficient, easy to implement, easy to maintain, and bug free.

With the release of Internet Explorer 9 Beta, and its support of many of the most up-to-date standards in HTML5 and CSS3, the IE9 development team has taken an important step towards helping developers achieve those aforementioned goals.

In this article, we’re going to walk you through many of the new HTML5 and CSS3 features that are included in IE9 Beta, so you can see how creating websites and apps for IE9 Beta will make things more scalable, more efficient, and more maintainable than ever before.

A Commitment to Web Standards

The HTML5 and CSS3 features that have been added to IE9 Beta have been included after careful review of their progress made within the official ongoing specifications drafted by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C).

With this in mind, we can see Microsoft’s commitment to adhering to the most up-to-date standards, while recognizing that standards are often still in their early stages, and will likely see multiple changes while the specifications progress.

As stated in the IE9 Beta Guide for Developers, IE9 has made “significant investments in standards support and interoperability,” including better support for a number of CSS3 features and added HTML5 support. This follows the improvements added to IE8, which delivered “a highly interoperable implementation of CSS 2.1.”

But enough with the introductions! Let’s dig in and take a closer look at the new HTML5 and CSS3 features in IE9 Beta.


IE9 Beta now supports the HTML5 Canvas element, which allows scripts to access a resolution-dependent bitmap canvas for rendering graphs, game graphics, or other visual images on the fly.

Canvas support in HTML5 includes support for the canvas 2D context, the drawing API, and hardware acceleration for optimal performance.

Canvas drawing capabilities in IE9 beta include support for lines, rectangles, fills, arcs, shadows, Bézier curves, images, video, and more.

The screen capture below shows “Canvas Pinball” from the IE9 Test Drive site—just one example of the endless possibilities available to developers with the Canvas 2D drawing API in IE9.

Canvas Pinball

This type of on-the-fly animation and interaction was previously only possible with third-party solutions or overly complex scripting. IE9 Beta’s support for canvas and the 2D drawing API allows developers to create real-world interactions with a native browser element and an API that is designed for this very purpose.

Video and Audio Elements

Up until recently, the only reliable cross-browser way to include video or audio in your web pages was to use markup that requires third-party software like Adobe’s Flash Player. This is not an ideal solution.

HTML5 has now added support for <video> and <audio> tags, allowing developers to include multimedia content using simple, meaningful, and easy-to-maintain markup. Here’s an example of HTML5 code that embeds a video into a web page with built-in video controls:

<video width="400" height="300" poster="example.png" controls> 

  <source src="example.mp4" type='video/mp4; codecs="avc1.42E01E, mp4a.40.2"' /><!-- for WebKit -->
  <source src="example.ogv" type='video/ogg; codecs="theora, vorbis"' /><!-- for Firefox and Opera --> 


The code above will place a video on the page, with visible controls for the user to play, pause, or “scrub” through the video.

Below is a screen grab from the IMDb Video Panorama page on the IE9 Test Drive website, as displayed in IE9 Beta.

IMDb Video Panorama

Using the “controls” attribute in the video tag, and depending on the size of the video, a full-featured control bar appears at the bottom of the video. This doesn’t require JavaScript or any extra graphics; the controls seen above are the default controls that display in IE9 Beta.

With these new HTML5 features for video and audio, developers can avoid wasting time creating custom video tools or using third-party solutions. Instead, content creators and developers can focus on the more important issues: creating video and audio content and writing scripts that can interact with the video and audio controls.

Of course, HTML5 video isn’t available in all browsers. But the code allows for the inclusion of fallback content for nonsupporting browsers. So, a virtually bullet-proof HTML5 video element would be coded as follows:

<video width="400" height="300" poster="example.png" controls>

  <source src="example.mp4" type='video/mp4; codecs="avc1.42E01E, mp4a.40.2"' /><!-- for IE9 and WebKit -->
  <source src="example.ogv" type='video/ogg; codecs="theora, vorbis"' /><!-- for Firefox and Opera -->

  <object width="400" height="300" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" data="example.swf">

    <param name="movie" value="example.swf" />

    <param name="flashvars" value="controlbar=over&amp;image=example.png&amp;file=example.mp4" />
    <img src="example.png" width="400" height="300" alt="example" title="example" />



The optional “poster” attribute in the opening <video> tag allows an image to display as a preview of the video. Everything included between the video tags that’s not a source element will work as fall-back content, should the browser not support any of the codecs included in the <source> tags.

The IE9 Beta Guide for Developers has more info on using HTML5 video and audio elements; you can read a detailed article on bulletproof HTML5 video on the “Video for Everybody” web page.

HTML5 audio in IE9 Beta works similarly to video, except without the use of the width, height, and poster attributes. Below is a screen capture from the “HTML5 Audio Player + XML Playlist” on the IE9 Test Drive site.

HTML5 Audio Player

The embedded audio example above includes custom controls created with SVG, another technology that’s new in IE9 Beta.

New Semantic Elements

The HTML5 spec has added a number of new semantic elements to a developer’s toolbox. This allows markup to have more meaning, and helps avoid the problem of documents being littered with unsemantic and meaningless <div> elements.

IE9 now offers support for the following new elements:

  • section
  • nav
  • article
  • aside
  • hgroup
  • header
  • footer
  • figure
  • figcaption
  • mark

Using these new elements instead of generic <div> and <span> tags (which can still be used in HTML5) adds a number of benefits. First, it makes things more maintainable from a real-world development standpoint. Having something wrapped in <figure> tags, for example, will make a section of your code easy to identify.

Another benefit is that many of these new elements contribute to creating a proper HTML5 document outline. While in HTML4 a document outline was dependent on uses of <h1> through <h6> tags, in HTML5 a document outline is defined by <article> elements. Although HTML4 and XHTML-style document structures are not invalid HTML5, this more up-to-date method allows content to be easily portable (using <section>)and easy to syndicate (using <article>).

The latest version of Internet Explorer’s Platform Preview (Build 7) now supports the styling of the new semantic elements, and recognizes them as real HTML elements instead of seeing them as unknown elements, avoiding the need to use JavaScript-based solutions. These features, although yet to be available in IE9 Beta, will be included in a future release of IE9.

Having the ability to move entire sections of content and markup to new locations is a huge benefit to the maintainability of code and sharing of content. In the real world, we want our content to be easy to move, easy to maintain, easy to recognize, and easy to syndicate. IE9’s support of these new features allows developers to solve these real-world problems.

CSS3 Colors and Alpha Channel Transparency

IE9 Beta introduces support for the CSS3 color module, including support for RGBA, HSL, HSLA, and the opacity property. These new CSS3 features allow developers to create semi-transparent elements directly in the markup and CSS, without the need for extra images.

The opacity property lets developers easily add different levels of transparency to virtually any element. Unfortunately, this property does not resolve every real-world transparency issue, because setting an opacity value on any single element will also set the same level of opacity on that element’s children, with no easy way to reverse the settings on the child elements.

This problem is resolved with RGBA colors. This new color module allows any CSS property that accepts a color value to also include a transparency value, using RGBA, without affecting child elements. Here’s a code example:

#element {
  background: rgba(98, 135, 167, .5);

The background property above is given a color defined in RGBA, instead of the customary hex code. RGB values are not new to CSS — they were permitted in CSS 2.1, but CSS3 now allows a fourth channel to be added: “alpha.” This channel works the same way as does the opacity property, accepting a decimal value between 0 and 1, with “0” being completely transparent and “1” being completely opaque.

And similar to RGBA, HSL includes support for transparency through an alpha channel. Here’s some example CSS defining the background color and background opacity of an element using HSLA:

#element {
  background: hsla(207, 38%, 47%, .8);

Multiple Backgrounds

IE9 Beta now supports the use of multiple values for the background-image property, allowing a single element to have to more than one background image, each with its own background-position setting. This new CSS3 feature helps solve a real-world problem that customarily required extra markup.

The code below demonstrates how to implement multiple backgrounds in IE9:

#element {
  background: url(images/bg-example-1.png) top center no-repeat,
              url(images/bg-example-2.png) bottom center no-repeat;

This addition to a developer’s CSS toolbox provides great benefit, making our markup and styles easier to maintain, and much more flexible.

Rounded Corners (border-radius)

Another common layout challenge that has plagued developers for years is the ability to easily put rounded corners on elements. In the past, this was only possible using images or complex scripting solutions. In IE9 Beta, putting rounded corners on virtually any element is possible with just a single line of code:

#element {
  border-radius: 10px;

This new feature eliminates the need for a complex scripting solution, or in most cases the use of images combined with CSS borders to create the rounded corners. With the newly added border-radius property, IE9 Beta lets developers create and change the radius level of rounded corners quickly and with very little code. IE9 also supports longhand notation for border-radius, so each individual corner can be given a different radius setting, as shown in the code below:

#element {
  border-top-left-radius: 20px;
  border-top-right-radius: 10px;
  border-bottom-right-radius: 15px;
  border-bottom-left-radius: 7px;

Media Queries

In the real world, people aren’t accessing our web apps and websites on a single device in one screen resolution. Creating pages that are able to display correctly for different screens and devices has been a challenge in web development for some time now. In the past, JavaScript solutions and server-side redirects have provided mediocre solutions to this problem.

Unfortunately, many of these solutions will either negatively impact performance or else require the use of detection methods that aren’t always reliable.

CSS3 Media Queries, now supported in IE9 Beta, allow developers to style a page based on a number of factors, including width, height, orientation, and resolution. Here’s an example of CSS that changes the width of an element based on the size of the viewing device:

@media (min-width:950px){
  #element {
    width: 600px;

@media (min-width:450px) and (max-width:950px){
  #element {
    width: 400px;

@media (max-width:450px){
  #element {
    width: 200px;

With CSS3 media queries, different devices and their respective capabilities can be easily targeted without scripting or server-side solutions. More information on media queries in IE9 Beta can be found on the IE9 Beta Guide for Developers.

CSS3 Selectors

The ability to select and target elements in CSS2.1 is fairly extensive, but limited in some areas. CSS3 increases the number of CSS selectors available to developers, and IE9 Beta provides support for many of them.

CSS3 selector support in IE9 Beta includes support for structural pseudo-classes, the target pseudo-class, UI element states pseudo-classes, and the negation pseudo-class.

Examples of some of the practical selectors offered in CSS3, and supported by IE9 Beta, include those shown below:

li:nth-child(4) {
  /* targets the 4th list item in every unordered list */

li:last-child {
  /* targets the last list item in every unordered list */

li:only-child {
  /* targets a list item if it is the only child */

input:disabled {
  /* targets a form input that is disabled */

input:checked {
  /* targets a form element that is selected */

For a full list of the CSS3 selectors supported by IE9 Beta, see the CSS3 Selectors section of the IE9 Beta Guide for Developers.

Progressive Enhancement

Naturally, in the real world many of these new CSS3 features will not be seen by all users. So what happens to these features in browsers that don’t support them? In those browsers, the lines of CSS that they don’t understand will just be ignored.

This allows developers to create a simpler, less attractive (but acceptable) experience for older browsers, then add the CSS3 enhancements to beautify the experience for users that can see the new features. JavaScript solutions can also be provided for selector support and other CSS3 features not supported by older browsers.

Paving the Way for Real-world Development

Microsoft recently announced that IE9 is their most rapidly adopted beta ever, with over 10 million downloads in the first six weeks. As usage-share statistics for modern browsers increase, developers will be able to implement these and other forward-thinking HTML5 and CSS3 solutions to their real-world problems more comfortably. Eventually, they’ll be able to create maintainable websites and applications that are usable and optimized for performance.

The release of IE9 Beta has contributed greatly to the future of web application design and development in the real world. To begin developing projects using some of these effective solutions, download IE9 Beta today.

Think you’re up to speed on how IE9 implements HTML5 and CCS3? Test yourself by taking our short quiz.

note:SitePoint Content Partner

This tutorial has been made possible by the support of Microsoft. In cooperation with Microsoft and independently written by SitePoint, we strive to work together to develop the content that’s most useful and relevant to you—our readers.

  • Janx

    Rounded Corners were impossible.? only on shitty IE engine.! ever hear of -webkit css tags.? moz css tags.?

  • Anonymous

    Is this site owned by Microsoft, or just clueless? It’s raving about the IE9 beta and not once mentions the fact that HTML5 and CSS3 support has been available in other browsers for literally years.

    I’m not even sure I’m glad that Microsoft are making progress. IE is the ball and chain of the web, I don’t see why we should celebrate it being dragged clumsily over another standard. Wouldn’t the web be better-off if Microsoft removed IE from the picture?

    • agentsuperdave

      i totally agree with you anonymous! is this a microsoft press release? unbelievable article. a complete IE9 BETA(!!) advert. don’t even bother reading this, move on to an article which actually addresses real world browsers.
      IE9 beta… you make me laugh :)

      • Alastair

        Yeah… this isn’t an article SitePoint should be proud of. The “Real World”, the majority of users, aren’t using IE9 nor will they be. These HTML5 and CSS3 features are only new to a niche browser that’s yet to come out for only a small percentage of operating systems. IE9’s partial catch-up is insignificant – thanks to M$’s legacy, we’ll still be writing backwards-compatible hacks while we can write modern code for the majority of modern users, using Firefox, Safari, Opera and Chrome.
        @Anonymous: That would be the day! Micro$oft mandating the removal of IE from their motley operating systems!

  • “Everything included between the video tags that’s not a source element will work as fall-back content, should the browser not support any of the codecs included in the <source> tags.”

    No. If the browser supports <video> but none of the <source>s, then a blank area (or the poster image) is shown. If you want to show the fallback content, you have to do it manually with javascript: use onerror=”” on the last to detect that all of them have failed.

  • …onerror=”” on the last <source>…

  • David

    This contradicts things I have read before as I have read that ie9 only supports the canvas, video & audio not all the other new tags?

  • Robbo

    Well sitepoint just lost huge points as my main website for web news. Blog about something news worthy for a change. XenForo for example could use some news and be discussed on here instead of some shitty IE promo for a beta browser that will STILL be years behind all other browsers.

  • Ted

    Why is it all the demos of amazing HTML5/CSS3 look like Flash 6? I’m not being a Flash-fanatic, just disappointed that we’re all so amazed by something which is really … hmmm…

  • himlalpun

    video and audio tags in html5 is just amazing.

    we should move bit further and have facility to build video directly from webcam and store it on server using html5 + browser. . it means no more flash anymore.

  • re5et

    It’s all nice and dandy. But.

    What helps me as a web developer isn’t another browser that does support new features, it’s getting rid of those that don’t.

    As long as there’s still people around using IE7, I have no choice but to use e.g. javascript to make IE7 recognize the new HTML5 elements. And if I have to use it anyway, well, I don’t care if IE9 needs it or not.

    What matters most to me as a web developer is the weakest link, not the strongest – and as long as there’s weak links like IE7 (or even IE6), the strong ones don’t help a bit – on the contrary, they might even cause more trouble (and work) in the sense that you no longer only need fallbacks or workarounds for unsupported CSS2.1 features, but now you also need new ones for CSS3 and HTML5 – effectively increasing the work needed to support everything from the newest browsers with all the nice features all the way down to IE7 which can’t even get CSS2.1 right.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad that IE9 does make a big step forward in regards to standards compliancy, but it doesn’t really change much – and if someone is still using IE6 today, it isn’t because he ‘missed’ an update or was too lazy to download a newer version – it’s for a reason. And whatever that reason, it won’t just disappear because there’s another new IE around – if that were the case, IE6 would’ve been dead for years.

    • Do your pages display in Netscape 4?

      At some point you have to refuse to support the old browser. If you don’t the owner of the browser has no reason to change.

      • That’s not a legitimate argument…

        Netscape 4 doesn’t show up in my client’s webstats and hasn’t for years but IE6 does and it still accounts for several percentage points. On a medium traffic website it could be 250 – 500 individual visits per month. IE7 accounts for even more traffic (than IE6) even though IE8 has been available for ages.

        The point I think re5et is making is that when IE9 comes out, there will still be IE8, IE7 and possibly IE6 users lurking around. Do we abandon them all en mass?

    • Anonymous

      i do agree with you buddy! i admit that i was impress by the new release HTML5 and CSS3, unfortunately we can’t use that because large number of user still uses IE 8, 7 & 6. i was hoping that we have alternative code to cure IE lower versions and for the other browser as well…

  • @weallneedheroes

    This is great news that IE is now starting to come on board & get up to speed with all the other browsers!

    It has taken them long enough….

    But not to be bring on a downer! IE 8, 7 & 6 don’t have a great deal of support if any (ie6).

  • Webnet

    I don’t like to see Sitepoint supporting IE 9. For years IE has been the worst thing on the web. This article is merely part of an advertising campaign IE is doing on Sitepoint. I haven’t see any new information here.

  • Real world? Unless you are testing for compatibility you have no business looking at either specification for writing production websites — PERIOD! After all that is what DRAFT means, and on the CSS3 side what what the vendor specific prefixes mean; for testing, not for use on production sites!

    While I do look forward to the day we can use CSS3 in the wild, which I figure to be five to ten YEARS from now, I dread HTML5’s coming because as it sits right now it offers NOTHING in the way of improvements and in fact is setting coding standards BACK a decade to before we had STRICT.

    What do I mean by undoing the progress of STRICT? The entire point of deprecating many of the tags was to reduce redundancy because people either couldn’t figure out how to use certain tags, when to use certain tags, and in general too many tags was confusing people. DIR and MENU were dropped for being redundant to UL… in HTML5 MENU is back! (with some wierd new meaning) APPLET and IFRAME were dropped as redundant to OBJECT with the proprietary EMBED and BGSOUND rejected from adoption for redundancy. Even IMG eventually intended to be eventually be replaced by OBJECT until the W3C threw away a much better specification and took what WhatWG was working on instead! This one in particular stands out as did we just ride IE’s case about not having a properly working OBJECT implementation? Hell no – Let’s make two new tags instead! (DOH) VIDEO and AUDIO; tags redundant to OBJECT… AND making the IE only EMBED part of the specification… (makes me wonder why they bumped applet to obsolete given their love for undoing everything else)…

    The loose formatting rules where you can just slap in markup any old way mixing types throws us back to the train wreck that is HTML 4 tranny — something that we’ve been told not to use for good reason. With the ‘conformance’ rules of HTML5 the validator is effectively useless at forcing any sort of formatting consistency resulting in code that ends up looking like mud. It really gives the impression that whoever is really behind HTML5 never embraced ACTUAL semantic markup, separation of presentation from content, proper heading orders, or any of the other progress of the past decade in terms of clean functional code… Basically the people who STILL vomit up HTML 3.2 and then slapping a HTML 4 tranny doctype on it — thinking that’s what “modern” means.

    This is made all the worse by the allegedly semantic new tags that seem to exist for the sole purpose of bloating out pages with wrapping elements for nothing… As Dan Schulz used to joke “the same people who wrote endless bloated nested tables for no good reason… today just write endlessly nested bloated DIV for no reason” — I would append to that HTML5 lets those same people use endless nested bloated “semantic” tags for no good reason. NAV and HEADER being a perfect examples of that — though keep in mind I have rarely seen a website that warranted the use of DIV ID=”header” or DIV ID=”nav” despite the majority of developers bloating out their pages with them for no good reason! (Not that I would call it nav since every anchor on a page is navigation, it’s why I prefer ‘____menu’ saying exactly WHICH one it is). Even DUMBER is people now slapping numbered heading tags and paragraphs inside NAV tags — because of course a h2 is ‘navigation’.

    In pen and paper gaming circles there are people who make up their own gear and pull rules out of their backsides, exploiting every loophole and drooling over every new book release in the hopes of some new uber-powerful gear… they are called “munchkins” — really I think where the WhatWG steered HTML5 is munchkin-like “gee ain’t it neat” garbage… and the people running around with raging chodo’s for it being the same ones who tried to deploy XHTML 1.1 on production websites JUST because it was ‘newer and shinier” and NOT because it delivered any real benefits much less even worked right… the same people who make the nonsensical claim that following the rules and guidelines for XHTML 1.0 makes it not be ‘real’ XHTML.

    Out of the entire specification the only things that are particularly impressive or desirable have little to do with the markup.

    SVG – A specification that predates HTML4 and was possible to use under HTML4 using object if you had a plugin for it, even under IE 5.0

    Canvas — little more than a javascript hook for drawing into. Useless without javascript I fail to understand why we needed a new element and couldn’t just be allowed to draw inside existing tags. (which could be handled by dropping the drawn elements into a new child node on the DOM APO’d over the content).

    AUDIO and VIDEO — again, redundant to object. Shame AUDIO is still in it’s infancy and next to useless for doing game audio due to the absurd latency of starting playback. (which is why the only CANVAS games I’ve seen that were any good still used flash for audio!)

    The rest of it? Pointless bloat and making things more confusing than need be. When the majority of developers vomit up code like ‘td class=header’ because they are unaware of the existence of TH or CAPTION, slap forms in definition lists because they are too stupid to figure out how to use LEGEND, LABEL and FIELDSET… DFN, SAMP, VAR… hell, most people can’t even bother learning the difference between B and STRONG, or I and EM — and many delude themselves into thinking B and I are deprecated when they aren’t.

    With that perspective in place adding MORE tags to the specification is NOT THE ANSWER!

    Though admittedly this ends up akin to the CISC vs. RISC argument in processor design.

    Which all adds up to why I have ZERO plans to migrate past XHTML 1.0 for the foreseeable future… and I didn’t even mention legacy support!.

  • basvanmeurs

    IE9 seems nice, ok. But do we really need another browser? Chrome, Opera and Firefox will still be miles ahead after their next update and they’re all freely downloadable! I also still wonder, why is it that there are so many people still using old IE-versions even though IE8 has been released for a long time? I don’t see people still using very old Chrome, Ffox, Opera or Safari versions, so why is it?

    Because, sadly, Microsoft has no genuine interest in really making the web a better place. If they had had it, they would have made sure that IE8 would run on all of their previous Windows versions, and offering FREE upgrades for their browsers, so that their old crappy browsers would disappear. For most people that still use IE6, this is not a choice. It is probably because they are working in a company in which an OS upgrade would be necessary to support IE, but that would generate too much hassle because of the current software that’s installed. Not making IE8 work on Windows 2000 was a pain in the ass for the web, and purely a decision out of commercial perspective.

    • I can answer the ‘why’ legacy IE or IE in the first place — for most people it works, and has worked… People are as a rule sloth to change from what’s worked just fine for them personally for over a decade! Majority of users barely know anything more about the Internet than “Duh, I click the big blue E”… As the old joke goes “I looked all over your computer and I can’t find the blue E for the Internet”.

      ALL the stuff we as developers notice and care about with other browsers as a rule means exactly two things to the average Joe Sixpack and Susie Sunshine users…. and Jack left town… took his ____ with him.

      It also doesn’t help that they don’t release new versions of the browser for legacy versions of windows — and there is NO legitimate excuse for them not to. IE9 will not work on anything less than Vista just as IE7 won’t work on Win9X… But then everyone else also dropped 9x support, funny since win32 should still be win32. (check FF and Opera’s requirements pages)

      You also have to keep in mind businesses who are tied to IE6 who can’t upgrade because it breaks their in-house crapplets. When it was released IE 4 through 6 weren’t just the most standards compliant browsers of their day (WHICH THEY WERE!) they also were the most open; the Trident API was completely exposed to developers and documented so ANYONE could use Trident as the renderer for their programs. A LOT of software is broken by IE7/newer, software companies are not willing to spend money to update.

      You also have the IT departments at companies like AT&T that are just run by idiots; They use mass refreshes of systems nightly instead of bothering to secure them because they have thousands of systems installed without enough people to maintain them properly; They are in no rush to change the refresh system image past what’s been ‘stable’ for them for a decade just because a web developer somewhere wants some goofy rounded corners…

      It sucks, but the world does NOT revolve around developers.

  • Funny how so many people don’t seem to understand what “draft” or “prefix” in this field actually mean. Personally I’ve been using HTML5 and CSS3 for more than a year now, without any problems at all. On sites that work perfectly on IE6 too, by the way. Luckily, I’m not used to wait for Godot.

    I have to agree that I cringed a bit when I noticed that an article that was supposed to be about “HTML5 and CSS3” turned out being about IE9. I have no problems with IE9, but maybe it would have been fair to say it explicitly in the title!

    • What are you doing for IE6/7/8 support for canvas, video and audio tags and CSS selectors that use attributes like last-child, etc…

      Those are the issues I’m concerned about. Yes we can use hacks like Video for Everybody which works well but it’s still a hack and not pure and simple HTML5 which I believe is the point of using HTML5… It’s supposed to reduce the tag soup that we use to support media and multi-media across disparate systems.

      I’m excited about HTML5 too but if it doesn’t require acrobatics to support the lowest common denominator I can’t use it for the majority of my clients yet.

      • You answered yourself to your questions. Falling back to Flash for video is not a “hack”, is the way to go. Why not give users who use a modern browser (and we’re not talking 2% here) the best experience while delivering to the others… well, still the best experience they can have in the not-as-good-or-modern browser they’re using?

        It doesn’t even take longer. For example, to support “last-child” (and much more) just use selectivizr… two seconds of copy and paste and it’ll work.

        Of course it would be great if all browsers supported every single feature… but it’s never been like that and that’s never stopped us from using new stuff.

      • re5et

        This is actually a reply to Laz75’s post:

        Simply throwing JavaScript at anything that doesn’t work the way you want is _not_ the way to go.

        Maybe it’s just me, but a website/design that doesn’t work without JavaScript is, in my opinion, broken.

      • re5et, I agree that sites should work without JavaScript too, absolutely. But “work” doesn’t mean “is absolutely identical”. If without JavaScript the site is not as pretty, but its content is perfectly accessible, then it’s perfectly okay, IMHO.

    • It is indeed funny how people don’t understand that Draft means “subject to revision” or how even the specification pages for the drafts say use the latest recommendation instead.

      After all, that’s also what RECOMMENDATION means, the one you ‘should’ be using!

      Much less vendor prefixes — if they don’t mean “for testing only” then why do they exist instead of just using the REAL CSS3 properties? They exist for the sole purpose of saying “this is in testing, do not rely upon it!”

      Of course as with most people who are jumping the gun by a decade and need the new shiny toys, it explains the 1.4 megabyte websites that if you are LUCKY end up half that size in over 100 separate files taking almost a minute on firstload just from handshake overhead even on the fastest broadband.

      You know, 17k of markup for 4k of plaintext (probably about double what should be necessary), 836k of javascript (236k compressed), with no scripting off graceful degradation, no CSS off graceful degradation, all for a page that doesn’t seem to actually do anything that needs javascript and likely could be brought in under 70k (not counting actual content images) as HTML4/CSS2.1 even with resorting to images for the rounded corners?

      Because every website needs 195k of CSS to function… Yeah that declaring every value three or four times with prefixes makes that so much better.

      • Sounds like a case of “bad apple that spoils the whole bunch”. If people do bad stuff with HTML5 and CSS3 that doesn’t mean they’re bad. People has been doing bad stuff with HTML 3.2 and CSS1. Let’s all write text files, instead!

        About prefixes, you might find this article interesting:

      • @laz75, you do realize I was referring specifically to the url your name here resolves to, correct? One minute firstload on HTML 5 capable browsers on a 22mbps downstream due to the hundreds of k of javascript nonsense, bloated markup with nonsensical heading orders, no graceful degradation…

        … and while not all that bloat can be blamed on HTML5/CSS3, a hefty portion of the markup can, and it is an excellent example of what’s wrong with the specification in terms of unnecessary allegedly semantic elements.

        ESPECIALLY in terms of it being a decade behind modern coding techniques given the use of things like the TARGET attribute, inlined style for no good reason, endless classes on elements that shouldn’t need classes (see .rounded for example), presentational classnames defeating the point of using CSS (.rounded, .grid_8 .clear), clearing DIV (what is this, 2001?), etc, etc, etc… There’s a reason I call HTML 5 “The new transitional” — and that’s NOT a good thing.

      • That’s an old site of mine, that I also use to experiment stuff… It’s a mess, the code sucks and I know it does. It’s not optimized, it has snippets from ten (literally, I put it online on 11/30/2000) years ago and lots of other ugly stuff, like .rounded classes or… pretty much everything you list and much more. I should remake it? You bet. I even have older sites, that are still filled with tables from the 90s. With time, I’ll upgrade them all, I hope.

        But what does this have to do with HTML5 or CSS3? Saying my personal sites suck means that HTML5 sucks, now? Sounds weird. 8-)

  • Do your pages display in Netscape 4?

    Do your pages display in Netscape 4?

    The point of new browsers is to try to force uses to upgrade and start using their browser.

  • martensms

    Well, I think this post not really submits what HTML5 is.

    HTML5 is not created to deliver newer browsers. It’s been created to deliver older browsers, too.

    Many HTML5 structures were standardized to make it easier to structure the content with their meanings. E.g. , and stuff is pretty important. Many things that were supported before it was standardized.

    There are also possibilities to deliver IE6 (and older) with HTML5-introduced tags. Stop using divitis. Try structuring your content with semantics. And please, stop using nagging pop-ups and banners. They are so 90s.

    the creator of

    • I don’t think it is possible to deliver HTML5-introduced tags to IE6 and older. The way I understand HTML5 will be handled by older browsers is that it will be rendered as HTML4 and any new tags will be ignored.

      I would be very happy to use HTML5 or whatever ML is the standard as long as it is supported by the popular browsers in use. That means at this time IE6/7/8/9, Firefox 3, Safari, and Chrome.

      I don’t know about you but none of the new tags I’ve played with work on the older IE browsers and even Firefox is a bit dodgy with the fun new media tags.

      Maybe by the time HTML5 becomes a recommended standard there will be a solution.

      • The only possible solution (now and in the future) is JavaScript. With JavaScript even IE6-8 can style the new tags. (also included in Modernizr).

        You just have to evaluate how many of your users will be on IE6-8 without JavaScript and make sure everything is accessible for them too.

  • Ittiz

    IE is still way behind the curve. This stuff would have been really handy back in ’05 when I was making pages that used nor more than that stuff. IE9 is just beginning to do things other browsers were doing years ago. They seem to think since they are the biggest browser out there they can neglect keeping up with the standard because everyone is forced to make pages that work in their browser. This is beginning to hurt them now that their browser share is shrinking.

  • Is this an article about IE9 or about HTML5? I don’t get it. Since when did SitePoint (or anyone) put out tech articles continually mentioning the specific suppport in one specific browser and ignoring all others? Tech articles usually detail support across all common browsers. And how come the author isn’t commenting?

    This looks like the trend in Microsoft sales text. They always spin recent developments in Internet technology to make it look like a Microsoft specific feature, so noobs get impressed that it’s something they can only get through Microsoft. No, HTML 5 IS available on other browsers too! You don’t JUST need IE9 to get HTML 5!! There are no negatives in this article. No history. No other browsers and no balance.

    What is this SitePoint? Declare your Microsoft dollars now! If this is advertising it should be labelled as such. What on earth is going on here? Fess up, Louis Lazaris, this is ugly.

    • Anil,
      I was on vacation for two weeks, and could not respond to any of the comments (it was a no-computer vacation!). The article was supposed to be published before I left, but due to certain factors beyond SitePoint’s control, it got pushed back.

      As far as I can tell, there is a note at the bottom of this article that indicates that this article was created in association with Microsoft. (I assume that note was there the whole time) So obviously any negative points were left out. Besides the fact that you can read negative things about Microsoft pretty much everywhere else, so I don’t think it’s such a big deal that one article out of a million doesn’t bash Microsoft.

      The article does not claim that IE9 is ahead of the game in any way. This article is a promo of IE9’s support of HTML5 and CSS3, nothing more.

      If you’re going to get on my case for being IE9-biased here, then you also need to get on Jason Santa Maria’s (and friends) case for which is also IE9-biased. Those designers were commissioned by Microsoft to create that project, the same as SitePoint was commissioned for this. But as the note mentions, the article was created independently by SitePoint. I wrote the whole thing as it is on my own, and SitePoint made a few minor modifications.

      There’s nothing dishonest in this article, nor is it implying that these features aren’t supported in other browsers. There’s plenty of info on the web about browser support for CSS3 and HTML5; this article was reserved for a slightly different purpose.

      • Wow…. Thanks for clearing that up. I never saw that MS partner note at the bottom of the article either. I thought the article was more IE-centric than I would have expected based on the title but I figured you were just jazzed about how much better IE9 will be with CSS support than previous IE offerings and I didn’t really give it much more thought.

        That said, maybe Sitepoint should make that notation a bit more noticeable so that people don’t get the wrong idea.

      • This is not about ‘bashing’ or ‘not bashing’ IE. If MSIE is consistently poor then it’s going to get a consistently poor reviews. That’s not bashing, that’s accuracy.

        So please don’t argue that it’s about time MSIE got a break. If IE does well, it should get a break. If MSIE beats all other browsers on HTML 5 support then by all means tell us that. But if it doesn’t, don’t make it look like it does! That’s not accuracy! That’s not fair to us, and it’s not fair to MS because it’s not giving accurate feedback to them.

        Check out the ‘note’ or ‘disclaimer’:

        SitePoint Content Partner
        This tutorial has been made possible by the support of Microsoft. In cooperation with Microsoft and independently written by SitePoint, we strive to work together to develop the content that’s most useful and relevant to you—our readers.

        Independently written? How can it be independent when the content brief is ‘advertorial’. Since when does a paid advertisment constitute independence? That’s why you need the disclaimer, Louis, because you need to declare that you are no longer independent. Hello?

        Relevant and useful to your readers? How is blatant spin and complete disregard for balance relevant or useful? Sure there IS useful HTML5 content in your article (that I would love to give credit for) if it wasn’t that you are leveraging that in order to propagate false impressions about capabilities of IE9.

        In another article (but not in this one) Sitepoint kindly provided a link to a page that shows how IE9 stacks up against the field for HTML5 support Check it out. It gives a decidely different slant than this article. Guess which browser has all the red X’s?

        In yet another article (but not this one) Sitepoint also kindly gives a summary of browser share and change rates Check it out. IE9 does NOT stand out as showing a high adoption rate in comparison to other browser, a decidely different impression than that given by this article.

        What’s honest about that?

        Too right this article is for a ‘slightly different purpose’. The purpose of this article is to obscure the true picture about MSIE9. I can’t think of a better candidate for a definition of being ‘economical with the truth’. Otherwise why would MS need to pay for it?

        This article is not an out-lier in the spread. It’s part of a trend at SitePoint e.g. and other tendencies.

        SitePoint has justifiably built itself a reputation over time by publishing technically accurate and ‘real world’ useful content. SitePoint now seems to have had a change of direction and is sacrificing quality for short term gain, leveraging it’s reputation to pull the wool over the eyes of newcomers to the industry.

        There are three things that I can think of that SitePoint can do to counter this.

        1. Stop it. Altogether.
        2. Don’t capitulate entirely like this. Follow a content brief and article intent HONESTLY, with balance. You don’t have to fawn at their feet do you?
        3. Put a FAR more prominent disclaimer. Put the disclaimer at the TOP where people will see it at all, and will see it BEFORE they read, and include some HONEST text in the disclaimer such as ‘This is an advert’ or ‘This article was paid for by Microsoft’.


      • Anil,

        You’re obviously getting upset over nothing here.

        This article is about the newest CSS3 and HTML5 features supported by IE’s latest browser. Nothing more. That is the “slant”.

        For you to imply that every article ever written about IE9 should be done with a negative slant is just silly.

        There is no reason for this article to contain comparisons, negative info about Microsoft, etc. Likewise there is no reason for Jason Santa Maria to design his version of Lost World’s Fairs ( and add a note at the bottom that says “By the way — IE9 sucks, I’m just doing this for the money”.

      • Anil,

        Further on some of the points you raised:

        The article was not written by Microsoft. Likewise, Lost World’s Fairs was not designed by Microsoft.

        Also, the article does not say that “IE9 has a high adoption rate in comparison to other browsers” as you falsely state. Please don’t misrepresent the article, that’s extremely shaky ground you’re treading on.

        The article says:

        “Microsoft recently announced that IE9 is their most rapidly adopted beta ever”.

        That means it is the most rapidly adopted beta in comparison to previous beta versions of IE, not in comparison to other browsers.

      • Actually Louis I don’t think Anil is on Shaky ground. I think he’s being a bit over dramatic but he has a valid point…

        Your article was titled HTML5 and CSS3 for the real world yet it turned out to be a promo article for IE9 that was in part sponsored by Microsoft. To be perfectly honest, your article was fine but it should have mentioned IE9 in the title because without it, the title misrepresents the article.

      • Yes, there are two valid arguments: Maybe the title should have included mention of IE9, and maybe the Microsoft partnership could have been more prominently displayed. But those things aren’t necessary, and that’s up to the editorial staff here to decide. They felt it was acceptable to do it this way.

        I don’t think there’s anything extremely misleading about the title. The content is exactly what the title implies, just with an IE9 twist. Consider this: If they had titled the article “What’s New in IE9” (or similar), I still think the traffic to the article would have been the same, if not more. Nothing gets more traffic to an article than putting “IE” in the title. The highest-traffic articles I’ve ever written were ones about IE or Microsoft (whether positive or negative).

        Also, the reason I said that Anil was on “shaky ground” was because he made a false statement about the content of the article. While he may have valid concerns, he can’t blatantly misrepresent my content to get his point across.

        Anyhow, thanks for your feedback, I completely understand where some of the comments coming from and I’m sure SitePoint will take measures to make things more clear in the future in situations like this.

      • Louis, I don’t see how you have established that I have misrepresented your article at all.

        Firstly, you tell me I am IE bashing, but all I’m saying is that if IE loses a game we shouldn’t pretend they won. And you tried to argue that you’re independent, but your article itself includes a disclaimer indicating it’s not independent.

        Then you told me I’m implying every article about IE9 should be negative. I’d like you to quote any text of mine with that implication. It’s just not there. For you to go on further from that false statement with your invented ironic IE bashing quote ‘BTW IE9 sucks’ is presumably your attempt to generate the quote that you can’t actually find in my text.

        Now you list some points that ‘I made’ and criticise them; but I made no such points.

        I didn’t say Microsoft wrote your article. Why do you think I asked YOU to comment? I certainly implied the article was PAID FOR by Microsoft. Please let me know if that is incorrect.

        I never mentioned ‘Lost World’s Fairs’. That’s your hobby horse.

        I never stated that the article says IE9 has a high comparison adoption rate. You will be unable to quote me on that either. I did state that the article GAVE THAT IMPRESSION.

        Why is the article quoting the adoption rate? IE as a whole is showing negative growth and IE9 beta adoption comparison rate says nothing about potential market share, but mentioned grandly in isolation an inexperienced audience might take it that it was worth something.

        This is the art of (some) advertising. To state fact in such a way as to generate an impression. Something your whole article does for the level of HTML5 support in IE9. That’s why it’s called ‘Advertorial’.

        Your article is positioned in the context of the SitePoint technical articles section. It’s an IE9 promotional piece without the independent factual balance that has been the foundation of SitePoint. It’s leveraging the SitePoint reputation for pecuniary gain while sacrificing the balance needed for readers to come to accurate judgements concerning the subject matter, namely, IE9 support for HTML5.

        Louis, the web is filled with blogs, articles and tutorials and these are interspersed with advertising. Advertising is a different sort of content from independent blogs, articles and tutorials. That’s why you took a step down from independence when you started writing paid advertising material. That’s why it’s called ‘Advertorial’.

        My comment was nothing to do with IE bashing, Louis, but it seems you want to turn it into an instance of ‘Anil bashing’. Far from walking on ‘shaky ground’ you haven’t managed to address my actual points. You haven’t ANY ground whatsoever, since you’re just gesticulating at invented objections nothing to do with my text. If I’m getting upset over nothing how come you can’t manage to answer the criticisms I’ve raised? This certainly isn’t obvious to me. I think the only thing that’s obvious is that it’s you that’s getting upset here, Louis. I’m just calling a spade a ‘spade’.

        In an effort to move on to productive discussion, perhaps you’d like to justify your rather extravagant conclusion: “The release of IE9 Beta has contributed greatly to the future of web application design and development in the real world.” This sentence encapsulates the whole problem I find with your article.

        While IE9 sadly continues to play catch up, slowing down the pack, how can you justify talking in terms of “great contributions to the real world”? Surely the contrast with reality is stark? Further, if the conclusion is derived from the article doesn’t a lack of accuracy in the conclusion reflect on the content of the article too?

      • Anil,

        This is a fruitless debate. Instead of recognizing that different projects have different purposes, you’re implying that every article should just tell the same story: That Chrome and Safari are #1, that Firefox is #2, and that IE is lagging behind.

        The reason I brought up Lost World’s Fairs is because it is *exactly* the same as this article. Jason Santa Maria is a graphic artist. He was paid to do something nice for Microsoft. I am a writer (another kind of artist). I was paid to do something nice for Microsoft. It’s the exact same thing. So you can email JSM and tell him he’s a sell-out and he should have been honest about IE’s font support.

        This article is not a browser comparison chart; it’s a positive article about IE9 and HTML5/CSS3.

        You misrepresented the article when you said the following in an earlier comment:

        “IE9 does NOT stand out as showing a high adoption rate in comparison to other browser, a decidely different impression than that given by this article.”

        The article never stated or implied any such thing. The article made the following statement:

        “Microsoft recently announced that IE9 is their most rapidly adopted beta ever”.

        That’s a far cry from your misrepresentation. Most likely you just skimmed the article and misrepresented it unintentionally, so I don’t hold that against you. But I still have a right to call you on your misrepresentation. What’s odd is that the topic of “adoption rates” was an aside to the article’s theme, so I really don’t know why you would even make such a big deal of that small point.

        You asked the question:

        “how can you justify talking in terms of ‘great contributions to the real world’?”

        The reason I can justify that is because IE9 has *significantly* more support for HTML5 and CSS3 than any previous version of IE. Microsoft is on a mission to get as many people as possible to switch to IE9. As those numbers grow, “real world” development will benefit, because there will be less need for code forking, weak fallbacks, and other nonoptimal techniques.

        Yes, it’s a very positive view of a somewhat negative situation (that people are still using IE6-8), but like I said, the intent of this article was different. There’s nothing dishonest about focusing on the positive and leaving out some negative things that have been repeated ad nauseam in the blogosphere.

        If you cannot admit that IE’s new browser is a huge step forward in technology, and that its adoption will contribute greatly to real-world web development, then I can’t help you.

        I’m sorry that this conversation took such a nasty turn, and I apologize if I caused any personal offence to you, but I don’t appreciate my words being twisted around for the sake of winning a pointless comments debate.

      • Dear Louis, you don’t seem to be getting the message, and the performance continues. It’s hard to keep it short.

        I am certainly not offended, but it seems you insist on misrepresenting my argument, and are complaining that I have done the same to you.

        The debate certainly seems to have borne no fruit for you so far; I can only urge you to take an honest and dispassionate look at the points I have already made.

        There is certainly a point to my comments; and I’m not interested in misrepresentation. I would be happy if anyone at SitePoint was able to take on board the problem that I’m pointing out here.

        Lost World’s Fairs is certainly not exactly the same as your article, and even if it was it is immaterial to the logic of my argument. BTW: When you write technical articles you are a technician and are required to be technically accurate. Artistic licence is not available.

        I did not misrepresented the article when I said: “IE9 does NOT stand out as showing a high adoption rate in comparison to other browser, a decidely different impression than that given by this article.” I KNOW that is not what it SAID (I already specifically pointed that out to you) but it gave an IMPRESSION. Newbies reading the article will likely get the impression that IE9 supports as much or more HTML5 features than other browsers and is popular as a result. I didn’t skim your article. I’m aware that your stat quote is technically not at fault. You seem to be unable to recognise the precise point point I made on this issue and have also ignored this when I addressed your objections. Just re-read my objection with an open mind.

        The big picture I’m pushing here is that the imbalance in your article DOES provide a false impression and is firstly, objectional at all, and secondly, if SitePoint is going to insist on publishing this odious type of article, it needs to be more prominently flagged. One fruit that HAS been borne by this discussion is that the SitePoint disclaimer has been identified as inadequate. Clearly the disclaimer is required because the article is NOT independent, but SitePoint reassures readers that the article IS independently written. This looks like an attempt to avoid properly confessing the lack of independence that everyone understands results from sponors PAYING for content. You also seem to be in denial that PAID articles are DIFFERENT from INDEPENDENT articles, and that this article in particular evidences the differences that arise.

        We’re all happy that IE9 has SOME HTML5 support, Louis, but the impression of your article is that it has, nay, not even sufficient, but such great HTML5 support that it is a ‘great contribution’ to mankind!

        Those of us who DO live in the real world and AREN’T paid by Microsoft to fudge the facts, can see that IE9 will be holding back the pack AS USUAL, and code forking and weak fallbacks will be required, AS USUAL, in order for us to use the HTML5 features that other browsers support but IE9 doesn’t. The fact that this is happening ad nauseum is no consolation to any of us, but it sticks in the craw when someone wants to pretend it’s not happening at all. That’s the dishonesty. If you’re tired of hearing it, Louis, I’m more than tired of coding for it, but it’s not going to happen any less, is it? MSIE HAS moved on, but the real world moved on MORE; and IE9 is still catching up. As usual. Contrary to your article’s conclusion.

        You’re right, Louis, you can’t help me, but Microsoft is certainly getting their money’s worth out of you.

      • I must admit that I am on the same page as Anil regarding sponsored articles.

        It doesn’t mean that I didn’t appreciate the article. There are some interesting points in it and it definitely got some interest from commenters but I’ve never seen a sponsored article that was 100% objective and it doesn’t matter if it’s MS, Oracle, Apple, IBM, etc…

      • Thanks awasson, I don’t know why it’s so hard to recognise this.

        I said in my second post that there is some good content in the article.

        But otherwise let’s be clear whether the article is ‘independent’ or ‘not independent’. The SitePoint disclaimer is misleading on this score.

        There IS a reason bloggers post disclaimers for sponsored articles. Posting sponsored articles without a disclaimer is regarded as unethical. Sponsored articles need to be identified because content will always skew in the direction of the sponsor, otherwise the sponsor would probably ask for their money back.

        This article IS a sponsored article, and I’ve pointed out HOW it’s skewed. And the disclaimer tries to state that the article is ‘independent’. That’s all I’m saying.

        I hope SitePoint minimises or eliminates this kind of content in future, and fixes their disclaimer.

        Thanks for listening, awasson.

      • Louis Simoneau

        @AnilG, your points are valid, and I can definitely understand where you’re coming from. We’re definitely going to take reader feedback onboard in future dealings with advertisers and sponsors. I just wanted to jump in and clarify what we mean by “independently written”.

        It’s a sponsored article, which means that Microsoft paid us to publish it. But Microsoft didn’t write the content, nor did they commission an author to write it. They told us what the article should be about, paid us, and then we went out and commissioned Louis to write it. He wrote it without any input or direction from Microsoft, with only the topic provided by them. So it’s entirely fair to say that the article was sponsored by Microsoft and also that it was independently written. Those two things aren’t mutually exclusive.

      • Anil,

        Your arguments are contradictory and without purpose.

        If you want to make the argument that SitePoint should not have sponsored articles, then go ahead, make the argument, and be nice about it. SitePoint is willing to hear your views. Your original argument was filled with flame-like intentions. You have a legitimate argument, but you’re not making it in a very professional manner.

        On the other hand, even though you fully understand that this is a sponsored article, you continue to criticize the content of the article. How can you expect a sponsored article to say negative things about IE9? You can’t attack the sponsorship and then make arguments against the content. In other words, there’s no way this article would have been published if it portrayed IE9 in a negative light. So your arguments against what you feel are dishonest implications in the articles content are pointless, because you already know this is sponsored material.

        So my point is: Make the argument against sponsorship, not against the content (which incidentally you have repeatedly misrepresented).

        As I’ve told you, there is nothing in this article that is technically dishonest in any way. There are no false statements, and there are no false implications.

        IE9’s adoption of HTML5 and CSS3 technologies is a HUGE improvement over previous versions of Internet Explorer, and that is what was focused on in this article. Compared to IE6-8, the amount of code forking and non-optimal techniques that will be required have significantly decreased in IE9. That’s why this article correctly uses the theme “real-world development” — because IE9 is helping developers head in that direction. Is it perfect? Of course not! But that doesn’t mean the improvements aren’t significant in comparison to older versions of IE.

        But again, you’ve already made it clear that you don’t like sponsored articles, so why are we arguing about the content, when that is completely irrelevant?

        Anil, I think you should come to terms with something: The web design blogging industry is a very good place to find good, honest information on web development trends and practices. We mark content as sponsored when it’s necessary. When you put forth arguments like you do, you’re not helping the matter much, because you’re showing design blogs and communities that it might be better to disguise paid content and not mark it at all.

        I think you should applaud SitePoint’s disclaimer, not criticize it, because they could easily resort to writing more paid content that’s not marked, and that would not be good for any of us. Yes, maybe the disclaimer could have been more clear, and maybe it will be in the future, I really don’t know. But at least it was there. Other sites might decide differently, especially when they read the reactions from readers like yourself.

      • I know we’ve beat this side-topic of sponsorship to near exhaustion but Louis you made a statement that keeps nagging at me:

        How can you expect a sponsored article to say negative things about IE9? You can’t attack the sponsorship and then make arguments against the content. In other words, there’s no way this article would have been published if it portrayed IE9 in a negative light.

        I think this statement paints with too wide a stroke and does a disservice to writers (such as yourself) because it claims you surrender to the one footing the bill. I don’t think that is or should be the case. Just because a vendor chooses to sponsor your article in no way does that mean that you have to pander to them. Some would say you’re admitting that your article is nothing more than an advertisement. I would say that you misunderstand the scope of the arrangement.

        If on the other hand I misunderstand the scope of the sponsorship arrangement and that a sponsored article is nothing more than subjective advertising, then I see absolutely no reason for them to be a part of SitePoint, Period.

    • Mr Simoneau, thanks for your clarification. I can’t imagine how the brief might have been worded. The process sounds as ‘hands off’ as it could be. My immediate impression is that Microsoft got a remarkably compliant deal for such a loose request structure. I guess you get future deals based on how well you did last time? On the other hand SitePoint has a position now, so perhaps Microsoft wants articles here regardless. I can’t help feeling that there could really have been more balance in the article. Perhaps balance was excluded by the wording of the brief. I think I still object to that word ‘independent’ in the disclaimer. It just feels a little misleading.

      Mr Lazaris, it seems to me that since you can’t refute my actual objections you have to continue to invent fake ones that you can refute. I don’t have any more energy to continue to explain away your vivid imagination.

      But your last suggestion can’t possibly pass without comment. Apparently SitePoint could “easily resort to writing more paid content that’s not marked, and that would not be good”? This statement seems to both admit that paid articles are biased AND that biased articles are bad. You seem to have made my point for me. And I should applaud SitePoint for declaring its bias instead of operating unethically? Don’t you think we should all expect ethical behaviour as a basic starting point?

      Louis, I’ve got no ill intention to you personally, but I can’t see where you’ve contradicted my points and you seem to end up admitting I’m right. I think we’ve exhausted this discussion so I won’t be replying again. I want to thank you for respecting me with a reply.

      Thank you, Louis Simoneau, for recognising my feedback.

  • DreamVista

    I’m new to all of this, but I can answer a question I saw come up a few times in this thread from my “end user” perspective: “I also still wonder, why is it that there are so many people still using old IE-versions even though IE8 has been released for a long time?”

    I train control room operators who use industrial automation to remotely run robotics and furnaces. We have several programs that support our plant operations, including an Oracle based Process Data Aquisition and Recording (to capture analog and digital inputs and control signals) and a remote browser to allow computers outside of the Control Room to also display the control system screens (view-only). We were informed by our IT Department when IE8 came out NOT to download it because many of our secondary programs (which are called up on an intranet/LAN using IE7) are not compatible with IE8.

    So if we load IE8, then we lose the capability of doing a lot of the things we normally would be able to do on our network. I believe this “incompatibility with secondary applications” issue may also apply to a lot of other industries.

  • tommydev22

    I agree with you 100%.
    It’s inviting more problems. It creates the whole accommodating IE6 just as IE6 is finally about to be out of the picture, problem, all over again!

  • Michael Pehl

    IE9 is still beta.
    CSS3 is not standard yet.
    HTML5 is not standard yet.

    Why bothering about stuff that isn’t standard or final?

    Not so useful informations this time :|

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