IE8 Beta 2 ReviewThe day the second beta of IE8 was released I decided I was going to give it a go. IE has been a completely worthless browser ever since hackers realized they could take advantage of ActiveX and it's tight integration with the underlying OS to destroy personal computers and corporate networks with ease. IE7 was supposed to change that. It didn't. IE8 is, again, supposed to change that. We'll see.
As soon as I got it installed, I saw something I hadn't seen since the IE 5.5 days, a first-run configuration dialog. Immediately, I was mad. I mean, seriously, who does that anymore? Set some freakin default options and I'll change them later if I want to.
Once I got passt the stupid config dialog, I went straight to my website to see how it looked. It didn't look any differently than IE7 or IE6. IE8 still doesn't know how to remove scrollbars from IFRAMEs and it still doesn't acknowledge opacity settings in CSS.
So even though they didn't fix their rendering engine, there is one thing I saw that I liked. If you look at the address bar, the domain that you are currently viewing is bolded, while the rest of the URL is gray. As long as people realize why this is, it will help to prevent phishing attacks. People will be able to see, at a glance, what site they are viewing. Hopefully, visiting http://www.paypal.com.hi-i-is-here-2-steal-your-data.tw will no longer be a problem, because you can quickly see that you're not on paypal.com.
So other than that one saving grace, some people will also like the newest feature, InPrivate browsing. What is that, you may ask? Well, I could go into lots of detail about how it doesn't store addresses in your history and how images don't get saved to your cache, but what does that really mean. Well, it means you now have pr0n mode. Yup, just like Safari introduced in their latest version, IE8 users now have the ability to surf pr0n and not get caught (unless someone walks in WHILE you're looking at pr0n). Microsoft uses the example of buying a surprise birthday present without your significant other finding out, but c'mon. They know what everyone will use it for.
Oh yeah, and one more for the road...