IE8: We are not the Devil anymore

Microsoft in an official release to the public has announced what features (read enhancements) they can expect from the much hyped Internet Explorer 8. This was at the MIX08 conference held at Las Vegas … you can read about the entire details here (beware, it is encoded with the usual marketing spin). Will list down some of the salient features here –

  • Activities – Users can add more extensions to their browser (the way Firefox does already). These activities would enable the users to do more, in short, Microsoft gets a whole new way to bundle their failed products with the new and improved browser
  • WebSlices – Users can subscribe to content from within a page. The moment the content is changed, the users will be notified in their Links Bar.
  • Automatic Crash Recovery – That’s reassuring!! This feature is being marketed actively instead of an implicit indication that it was always there. Anyways, how is this adding value over Firefox or Opera for that matter.
  • Safety Filter (thats Anti-Phishing) – This is to be improved and enhanced, which will block sites known to contain malicious scripts. No comments here. I am actually hoping that this works, people do not realize how important this feature is. And those who do, do not use IE :-)
  • Compliance – IE8 will now be more compliant to the CSS standards. Finally, some sense, these days too many sites are relying more and more on CSS instead of flash or complex javascripts for glitzing up their websites
  • AJAX Navigation – Hmmm … this is a nice touch I must say. In all the AJAX based portals, whenever we click the back button of the browser, the browser goes to the page which was last submitted completely and not the last AJAXed state. Having this might be a blessing for normal users, I know the techies had just learned to live without AJAX navigation
  • Integration – IE8 promises ready made integration with Facebook and eBay, et al. So, thats a plus for all facebook and eBay users … dunno how many of them will actually use it though.

All this and a lot more kids! These have been promised to the doe-eyed of Microsoft … you can almost see the bunch of users in the background using their respective other browsers waiting and watching to see what happens next. I am one of them.

As of now, if you do want to try out the beta, try the IE8 Readiness Toolkit and then proceed for the installation. One word. Apprehension.

Microsoft to open up?

Microsoft has started to take the power of the development community seriously. In a press conference yesterday, they have put a very verbose official release regarding increasing the interoperability of all the high volume MS products by releasing and maintaining documentation of their APIs on their site. As quoted from Steve Ballmer,

For the past 33 years, we have shared a lot of information with hundreds of thousands of partners around the world and helped build the industry, but today’s announcement represents a significant expansion toward even greater transparency. Our goal is to promote greater interoperability, opportunity and choice for customers and developers throughout the industry by making our products more open and by sharing even more information about our technologies.

Read the complete release here.

The products whose APIs would be released are Windows Vista (including the .NET Framework), Windows Server 2008, SQL Server 2008, Office 2007, Exchange Server 2007, and Office SharePoint Server 2007, and future versions of all these products.

Can we have someone look into the revenue of these products as well?

Translated, will now have to buy a license and become a registered member of MSDN to understand the APIs for the “high volume products”.

RedHat was not so much impressed with this release, read more of it here.

Aamchi Mumbai

This just in.

Thank god for some good sense!! Saamna was bound to slam one of their own. The moment Raj Thackeray must have said those words, there would have been some minds tracing the eddies those remarks must have caused in the social currents of the city.

Slamming non-mumbaikars to garner the vote of the marathi manus is one thing. This is more like trying to take the cake and eating it too. At any point of time, if you see what is running a huge city like Mumbai, then it is the corporates, the financial markets, bollywood, underworld, politics, et al. How many maharashtrians (I am trying to use the politically correct term here!) do you know in any of these fields?

Take the non-mumbaikars out of Mumbai, and the city does not remain Mumbai!! It looses its proverbial charm! The economy goes down, unemployment goes up … from a T1 city, it might plummet to as low as a T3 city. I am not exaggerating here!! What are you standing to gain after coming to rule in such a city?

Some things are better when shared. Aamchi Mumbai is open to all. It feeds on precisely that.