Opacity in Internet Explorer 8 development

Warning This article was written over six months ago, and may contain outdated information.

After just recently writing a post on CSS3.info which praises the CSS Working Group for their interaction with and communication to the web development community, now I have to write one castigating Microsoft for doing the opposite.

As former Microsoft (and now Mozilla) employee Al Billings explains, the Internet Explorer team went some way to mending burnt bridges when they opened up their lines of communication and engaged the community during the development of IE7; most of that good work has been undone since then, however, as they’ve gone more or less silent about new developments on their blog since launch.

We have no idea what they are classing as important for their next release; no idea whether it’s worth investing our time in SVG, Microformats, or any other new standard. I understand if they don’t want to release details of any new browser functions they might be working on, but an occasional Alpha of the updated Trident engine would be more than welcome.

I don’t think it’s good enough that the maker of the browser with the largest market share should be keeping the people whose jobs depend on it in the dark. The conversation with the community should have continued after the launch of IE7, and should be ongoing. As Al Billings summed up:

Engagement is not something that you do for a year and then turn off for another year before repeating. It is a regular process of communication and openness.

More: Openness and IE, or “Talk to us!”; IE Team Silence.

6 comments on
“Opacity in Internet Explorer 8 development”

  1. I totally agree. It looks like it’s time for the IE team to come back down to earth.

    I really get sick of the way they treat us.

  2. […] take is a strong disclaimer that features were only experimental and not guaranteed for launch. As I said before, even if full Betas were not released, at least an Alpha or two of the layout engine with a basic […]

  3. […] complaints from the web community about lack of transparency in the development of the next Internet Explorer, and a little […]

  4. This is a fucking disgrace imo

    Peter White [May 30th, 2008, 8:02 pm]

  5. Thank god for at last Explorer is finally giving them hypocrites some of their nonsense ““standards”” back to their teeth.

    This proves that everything containing the (now finally) meaningless word “standard” is a hollow propaganda that has never had anything to do with true standardization of the browser market. W3C is a disgrace to a moraly standing society of the net for it has become a filthy weapon in the hands of browsers wagging war against a beautifull and a highly capable browser like Explorer 4.01 which by the way stil after 11 years of age is more flexibile and more compliant to the coders needs than W3C CSS3 will ever be.

    To hell with all hypocrits and liars. Those who are yelling “standards” can’t have and won’t have opacity simply because it’s a NONSTANDARD feature! This should be clear to every standard hypocrite. You have to decide to either support “standards” that are keeping internet in the era of Jura or to embrace the revolution once started back in 1997 by the only one true Browser: The Internet Explorer.

    Regards

  6. I am one of the webmasters that are ready to cry “foul” for the way IE8 pretended to go for standards compliance but then turned around and not only didn’t support CSS3 opacity properties but added insult to injury with yet another opacity code abortion in IE8, to add to the already nasty IE 6 and IE7 abortions! Hypocrites!