To give some background, Firefox 4 has just been released a week after Internet Explorer 9. A Seattle news website stated that the downloads for Firefox far outstripped the downloads for IE 9. This was Microsoft’s response:

The developer community has been vocal that they want to push the Web forward. The browser is only as good as the operating system it runs on and a browser running on a 10-year-old operating system tethers the Web to the past. The time has come to stop focusing on lowest common denominator, and to really push what’s possible with innovations like full hardware acceleration. Customers can tell the difference when they see it.

Two things:

  • How is it that Mozilla, Google and Apple can release better, more compliant browsers than Microsoft on an OS that they didn’t even write?
  • Customers can tell the difference when they see it.? Nonsense. Designers are the ones that can tell the difference. If you want to stop focusing on the lowest common denominator, work with standards bodies and release compliant browsers without weird extensions.