As I give talks, I continue to find, to my continued surprise, that many people don’t know that there is any alternative to Internet Explorer (IE). The other day a webmaster of long acquaintance said something to the effect of:
Sure, I tailor my web pages for IE. What else would anybody use? And why would they?
(I usually attribute quotations or even paraphrases, but let’s let that one remain nameless.)
Why? Because IE draws security exploits like honey draws flies. Because it has deep design flaws. Because it is less capable than all the other major browsers. Because having a single browser used by 90% of desktop users is inherently unsafe, no matter what the browser is, because it is a monoculture, which means that there is a possibility that an exploit could attack a large proportion of all desktop machines all at the same time. This isn’t an academic concern, either, since there have been numerous IE exploits, including some, such as scob, for which there was no patch.
What else would they use?Continue reading