Anne van Kesteren

Ignorant developers

When you go to you see quite a normal internet company using non semantic markup from 1995. However, it's their newsletter that is most interesting. The newsletter where they give their interpretation on why Internet Explorer has the largest user base. Their first point, that Internet Explorer is installed by default and therefore used is quite accurate. However, when they state that Internet Explorer is the most innovative browser they must have missed something. You might say they missed Firefox, but it is mentioned as well. Oh, and it is Firefox, without a dash and with a single capital letter.

Some people are simply stuck in time.

(I read this in a forum thread on


  1. I'd say; «Some people are simply so stupid that they theoretically shouldn't be able to get out of bed and put on clothes by their own hands in the morning.»

    Posted by Asbjørn Ulsberg at

  2. I'd almost say cute, but it's really sad. I can not see how a company can be so badly informed but still thinks it can dare to spread the bad information.

    Posted by Rob Mientjes at

  3. I'd say Damn, I can't read it! ;)

    Posted by Turnip at

  4. I think they mised a few years. Besides I hardly think Microsoft spend much of their money on developing IE. Else we'd be having something... newer. IE7, so to say.

    Posted by Frenzie at

  5. Precisely the opposite is true from what these people say. I'll quote some stuff, but I'll translate it to English first for those that can't speak Dutch:

    After that, Internet Explorer is equipped with the latest technologies. All of the others are behind in that regard because their investment power is far smaller.

    The first sentance is blatant bull**** and Mozilla obviously overcame the problem mentioned in the second sentance.

    And right at the top they say this:

    The latest statistics shows that Internet Explorer is by far the most used browser: 92%.

    And no mention of the fact that Internet Explorer actually had a larger market share but is now dropping? Suprising if you think that this newsletter is for December 2004!

    You see, if you don't know s*** about something, don't author a newsletter about it!

    Posted by Charl van Niekerk at

  6. The statistics can't be trusted either, so basing your assumptions on them is silly. At least when you're so off on everything else as well. Opera identifies itself as Internet Explorer by default.

    Countless of robots and other browsers does the same because developers with the same (lack of) brains as the ones discussed here serves «Your browser is too old»-pages to browsers who doesn't identify themselves as Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.1) or something similar.

    This makes me want to quote the man who made it possible for me to sit here and type in these characters and post them to Anne's website:

    Anyone who slaps a 'this page is best viewed with Browser X' label on a Web page appears to be yearning for the bad old days, before the Web, when you had very little chance of reading a document written on another computer, another word processor, or another network.

    -Tim Berners-Lee in Technology Review, July 1996

    Posted by Asbjørn Ulsberg at

  7. Opera identifies itself as Internet Explorer by default.

    Actually, it identifies itself as Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; MSIE 5.5; Windows XP) Opera 7.0 [en]. Any Opera-aware sniffer will be able to identify it.

    I also object to the notion that Firefox is more innovative than Opera. It has been catching up, but that's mostly on account of the growing pool of extensions.

    Posted by Leons Petrazickis at

  8. I wrote an e-mail to the editor of that e-zine. I think we all have to do that, so they can see what they say...

    Posted by Jort at

  9. Wat vreselijk. Guess what, Anne, this was my first Dutch I learned!

    And how truely terrible it is what you can read and see on their site. Oh my, did you see, "they got so much response" on their Asthma site they have done for a customer. What does that horrid site look to you? It looks way back 1995. There is nothing eye catching, there is nothing pleasing to the eye, there is nothing of communications psychology in it. And all the texts are far to long for internet consumption, the design does not underline the content. They have obviously not understood the entire medium at all!

    Groetjes uit Duitsland (greetings from Germany), Steph.

    Posted by Stephan at

  10. I see that the test doesn't work as intended, but I don't think it looks that bad and even the code is cleaner than I'd expected. A little bit like my code before I understood the blessings of CSS [1] (and I can understand going past some of them because a certain "browser" lacks decent support for it). Neither do I notice too long texts on the astma page, although such a thing is of course personal. I actually think the site hardly contains any information at all, but that might be just me...

    [1] To that I should add that it only took a few months without doing any research on the web at all before I understood it. It was the community which opened my eyes. I just mean to say that that should be in no way similar to a professional compagny.

    Posted by Frenzie at

  11. One might call this "Barslecht"


    Posted by Rogier at

  12. Rogier, we have many words in Afrikaans to describe how bad that article is, but just in case another Afrikaans-speaking person reads this weblog, I will rather refrain from using them. ;-)

    Anyway, if my Dutch was better, I would also most likely have written to those guys to complain. I know one shouldn't start this kind of fight, but really, that article is so bad nobody should be allowed to get away with it. :-)

    Posted by Charl van Niekerk at

  13. Fortunately *cough* there are even worse cases out there ;).

    The good thing is that this company knows everything about SEO. One hooray!

    Posted by Krijn Hoetmer at

  14. They would have a new good Programmeur :p
    # Pagina's kunnen ontwikkelen in (X)HTML die voldoen aan de standaard;
    Yes i think that they realy need it, valid the page

    Posted by w3news at

  15. I've seen their favicon before. It's like so Moo ;)

    Posted by Zoran at

  16. I also object to the notion that Firefox is more innovative than Opera. It has been catching up, but that's mostly on account of the growing pool of extensions.

    My understanding of is that an underlying design goal for Firefox is to include only the most basic features in the actual Firefox browser, while other features should be implemented as extensions. Therefore, if Firefox + extensions can provide a level of functionality roughly equivalent to Opera, then the Firefox developers have nailed their design goals right on the head.

    Posted by Matthew Raymond at

  17. Innovative, maybe not. But IE is certainly inventive. ActiveX that can can do whatever the user account allows. Tight integration with Windows, like replacing \ with / in HTTP requests, because not even Microsoft's own IIS server will accept the backslashes.

    The problem is not too little invention, the problem is that they are the wrong inventions.

    Posted by Jan Egil Kristiansen at

  18. Not all of them are wrong. Most are either useless or dangerous (website specic cursor, ActiveX... etc), but well, HTTPRequest...? :)

    Posted by Frenzie at