So the WaSP has issued another manifesto now that Microsoft has declared that it will no longer build standalone, free browsers for Windows and Apple machines. Now I say this as a long time supporter of the WaSP, but I doubt Microsoft is going to issue a few last patches to fix the broken XHTML, PNG and CSS support in IE 6 or Macintosh’s IE 5.
Five or so years ago it was easier because Netscape had already lost marketshare to a, let’s be honest, technically superiour browser given away for free by a powerful company. At that time Mozilla was still a very novel idea. It was easier for WaSP to light the fires under Netscape and, by proxy, Mozilla for standards support because at that time their browsers were behind and their share was small. This time, Microsoft will be much harder to push around.
I say this with great sadness and irritation because this means that, like it or not, broken IE 6 for Windows and IE 5 for Macintosh will be the baseline for design for several product upgrades to come. Luckily the tactics we used to hide nifty CSS from buggy Netscape 4, can be used to hide nifty CSS from buggy IE 6.