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IE 8 takes on Safari with 'Activities,' more

updated 06:40 pm EST, Wed March 5, 2008

IE 8 takes on Safari

Microsoft has released Internet Explorer 8 (IE 8) beta, a test version of the company's free Web browser that will compete for dominance with Apple's Safari browser and Firefox. IE 8 features 'Activities,' or contextual services that provide quick access to a service -- such as 'look up' or 'send' -- from any Web page. Activities for example could allow a user to select the address of a restaurant and display an in-place view of the map using a favorite map service.

Another feature, dubbed 'WebSlices,' allows websites to connect to users by subscribing to content directly within a page itself. WebSlices behave just like feeds where clients can subscribe to get updates and notify users of changes. Internet Explorer 7's 'Links bar' has been renamed to the 'Favorites Bar,' which has undergone a complete makeover, according to Microsoft.

Automatic Crash Recovery -- or ACR -- helps to prevent the loss of work and productivity in the event of the browser crashing or hanging. ACR takes advantage of the 'Loosely-Coupled' Internet Explorer feature to provide new crash recovery capabilities like tab recovery, minimizing interruptions to browsing sessions.

An improved 'phishing' filter helps warn users when visiting a known phishing site. IE 8's phishing filter includes a feature called the 'Safety Filter,' which continues to block known phishing sites as well as sites known to contain malicious software that could harm users' computers or steal information. The Safety Filter also operates more quickly than before, according to Microsoft.

Finally, new Group Policy options are available to IT administrators, allowing them to remove the user-override option and fully block access to known unsafe sites.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Omek

    Joined: Dec 1969


    And the Web designers...


    For crying out loud. This just gets worse and worse. How about someone creates a virus that removes IE from all machines and installs firefox or safari instead.

    I guess that wouldn't really be a virus, more of a godsend. ;-)

  1. jpellino

    Joined: Dec 1969


    and still...

    ... it'll have three rendering modes and you'll have to put a tag in your web page to tell it your site is standards compliant so it doesn't default to ms quirks mode...

    S-T-A-N-D-A-R-D-S. do they not own a dictionary in redmond?

  1. Flying Meat

    Joined: Dec 1969



    I will still and soon be NOT using it.

    I wish they'd focus those development resources on an actually improved Mac Office product with real feature parity in Entourage and a real OOF translator that handled all the Office suite documents. :P

  1. shadowduck

    Joined: Dec 1969



    I wish MS would just give up browser development altogether. Almost all the features listed here as new to IE 8 are already available in Firefox by default or provided via extensions.

  1. Guest

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Only for Windows...

    So am I the only one who read this and thought that IE 8 was also for Mac? Nope - looks like windows only - might be nice to note that in the article somewhere.

  1. Mr. Strat

    Joined: Dec 1969


    another cluster f***

    Public betas like this are always wonderful for tech support. Now, we'll have people calling because something doesn't work right and have to explain that it's a beta product and is not supported. Thankfully, I don't take phone calls, support only hardware, and support mostly Macs.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: and still

    . it'll have three rendering modes and you'll have to put a tag in your web page to tell it your site is standards compliant so it doesn't default to ms quirks mode...

    Keep up, will you. They announced in the last couple of days that they will default to standards mode.

  1. ViktorCode

    Joined: Dec 1969



    IE8 will default to standards compliant mode and it has listed features as part of the default package, not as plug-ins or extensions. If you care to compare it with, say, FF then please include IE plug-ins in your comparison since you've mentioned extensions.

    It's too early to say now if IE8 will take some of the market slice back to MS, but I will give it a try.

    About whole 'standard compliant' thing: w3c is a host of reference standards, and in early internet days they were nothing more than yet another view on how web pages supposed to be coded, while IE and Netscape compliance were the true standards because they represented the majority of internet content. I've heard too many web developers cries back then, because along with 'real browsers' they had to support some 'stupid Opera' as well.

    Therefore a note to all standard developers: if you want it to become a real standard first make sure that other developers will support it from day one.

  1. robttwo

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Really, does anyone think this is GOOD for "the internet?" I love that MS has to announce that it will default to "standard" mode. Oh, you mean it is a big deal that it will actually be compliant and not try to ram some stupid MS concoction down developer's throats?

    And let's face it - any "feature" which they add will be like all MS "features" which they don't steal from some other developers - bloated, slow, unneccessary, unneeded, poorly implemented, and in some way will s**** the user over.


  1. coffeetime

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Amazing how much comments we have here and it's only a Windows product. This is the reason why MaCNN will continue to post WiNN stuffs.

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