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Facebook and Internet Explorer 8

Saturday April 18, 2009

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Surprised you. Didn’t I. Here it is Saturday morning and the title of my blog is almost technical. Facebook and Internet Explorer 8! I am going to try to make this post short and sweet. Here is what I experienced this week from a technical standpoint.

  1. For the past few weeks every time that I have opened IE 7 I have seen an invitation to download IE 8. Finally, I thought why not? So I did. It seemed to download efficiently and there were many new features to see and use.
  2. As a “member” of Facebook, I log on to Facebook about once or twice per day. I don’t really have time to be on Facebook all day long taking surveys, tests, etc. But on the day that I downloaded IE 8 I went to Facebook and what do you know…there was a message at the top of my Facebook home page that said: ALERT! You are trying to view FACEBOOK using IE 6, please update your browser to IE 7!
  3. Are you kidding me? I would have understood if this alert message had said “You are trying to view FACEBOOK with IE 8, but Facebook is not compatible with IE 8. Until we have updated FACEBOOK to be compatible with IE 8, please view in Firefox.”
  4. I let a few days go by and when I wanted to sign into FACEBOOK I did go to Firefox. But this became annoying.
  5. This morning I once again went to FACEBOOK on IE 8 and the strange warning message was gone, BUT the view was still screwed up (my technical term).
  6. Once again, on FACEBOOK I clicked on HELP and searched the phrase “Internet Explorer 8.” What do you know, someone actually posted the solution to my problem: “While you are on Facebook: Click on “Tools” then click on “Compatibility View Settings”. Facebook’s web site will appear in the “Add this Website” box. Click the “add” button and you will be all set. Facebook will now be viewable with all of its features in IE 8!”
  7. Now I ask you: According to Facebook’s Press Room, FACEBOOK has 200 million active users, don’t you think that with 200 million active users that FACEBOOK could make sure their software is compatible with IE 8 or at least they could post a message that made sense and gave IE 8 users instructions of how to correct the view?

What I have just described to you is one of the new features of IE 8. That is a Compatibility View. The first time you visit a web site using IE 8 you will see a little box to the left of the “refresh button”. Hover over this box and it says: “Compatibility View: Websites designed for older browsers will often look better, and problems such as out-of-place menus, images, or text will be corrected.” GREAT!!!! This makes IE 8 worth it to me. There are other new features like, “re-open closed tabs”, “InPrivate” and “Use an Accelerator.”

I am sure many of you are saying to yourself, why does Judy use Internet Explorer when she could use Firefox, Chrome, etc? Habit…yes, I happen to feel comfortable with IE, as do many other people. And the bottom line is this: Webconsuls is responsible for designing and upgrading our clients’ sites. As such, we are required to test new and upgraded sites in all browser types and versions.
Let me know what you think.

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Internet Explorer crashes Send Error Report! It seems like when I open IE, nine times out of ten it freezes upon opening; then I get a message asking if I would like to send an error report or not. I have installed and reinstalled IE several times, but to no avail. It makes me wonder what Microsoft does with all the error reports that I send them; it sure seems like those hundreds of error reports that I send to IE do very little.

How is it it that the browsers that are not as compatible as IE work so much better? If I could only use Google Chrome for all my Internet needs I would be very pleased. Unfortunately, I have to use Internet Explorer for particular tasks, even if it opens one time out of ten. Patience is truly a virtue when dealing with IE!

My hope is that as Google Chrome gets better, I will be able to use Internet Explorer less. With time I hope to eventually move away from IE for good. In many respects one can manage with using any of the available browsers; the question is how much frustration can be endured before you only want to use one browser? All I want, is that when I send off error reports to power houses like Microsoft, they could at least fix the problem.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Google’s user friendly browser appropriately titled Google Chrome is the “Cat’s Meow” of browsers. Your ability to navigate easily coupled with advanced applications makes Google Chrome worth its weight in Chrome. As with every beta project there will always be kinks to work out, and with every subsequent release Chrome can and will only get better. Google fixed scrolling with laptop touchpads and better reliability for those users who access the web through a proxy server. The new version of Chrome has improved performance and stability with a number of Plugins like Flash and Quicktime; they have also worked out a lot of security problems as well. Chrome added the ability to add words to the built-in spell checker.

If you already are working with Chrome then it will automatically update itself with the Third Beta within the next few days. I believe at a certain point in the near future Chrome will be the only browser you need to work with. In my life and work I use Chrome for 98% of my Internet activity, Chrome is by far the best browser I have worked with.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Google has had a relationship with Mozilla Firefox for quite sometime and now they decided to branch off and get in to the desktop applications at a larger level. Firefox lead engineer Ben Goodger began working on the Google Chrome project two years ago where at that point, he stopped contributing to Firefox. Firefox see’s Chrome as another competitor in the industry, and why shouldn’t they, its Google.

Chrome is designed to have more application related websites run smooth giving each browser tab its own run-time environment so if one tab crashes, you can still continue to browse other websites in separate tabs.