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Internet Explorer 9's Standards Compliance Starts New Web Experience

Microsoft Complies

Microsoft recently released the beta of Internet Explorer 9 (IE 9). The company is tying the launch into a website called "Beauty of the Web," which serves to propagate its message about IE 9's many benefits.

There are two things going on with this version of IE that make it a pivotal moment in the history of computing.

First, this version will be Microsoft's first browser to be completely standards compliant. This means that developers for the first time will no longer have to write two sets of code, one that works on Internet Explorer and another that works on "all other browsers." As someone who watches a lot of Web code, I can tell you that Microsoft's previous non-compliance has been a material source of wasted productivity and headaches.

Second, this browser embraces the next generation of Web standards, opening the door for the widespread deployment of applications based on them. Although most browsers now support standards such as HTML 5 and CSS 3, developers had been slow to leverage them in part because of the large number of users of Microsoft browsers for whom that work would not apply.

With the release of IE 9, that work now will apply universally, and because these new standards are so much more powerful, you are going to start seeing tremendous advancement in Web-based application quality and interface.

But here is why this release is truly important: It marks the death knell for a range of technologies that many of us have warmed up to and grown to accept, but to which we are going to have to start saying our goodbyes: desktop applications, Flash, plug-ins.

This release is the final capitulation from the last major industry player about what the future of cloud computing is really going to look like.

And if you haven't figured it out already, it's going to be about the browser and it's going to be about standards-compliant, Web-focused technologies.

In a browser, you are going to begin seeing more interactive interfaces, more 3D rendering, faster responses and generally just a lot more functionality.

And because it is all Web cloud computing based, you are going to being enjoying a lot tighter integrations between the various sites or applications you leverage.

2011 and beyond is going to be experienced in a browser.

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This was originally posted on the Central Penn Business Journal Gadget Cube.

More Stories By Treff LaPlante

Treff LaPlante has been involved with technology for nearly 20 years. At WorkXpress, he passionately drives the vision of making customized enterprise software easy, fast, and affordable.

Prior to joining WorkXpress, Treff was director of operations for eBay's HomesDirect. While there, he created strategic relationships with Fortune 500 companies and national broker networks and began his foray into the development of flexible workflow software technologies. He served on the management team that sold HomesDirect to eBay.

During his time at Vivendi-Universal Interactive, Treff was director of strategy. In addition to M&A activities, Treff broadly applied quantitative management principles to sales, marketing, and product line functions. Treff served as the point person for the management team that sold Cendant Software to Vivendi-Universal. Earlier positions included product management and national sales trainer for Energy Design Systems, an engineering software company. Treff began his professional career as a metals trader for Randall Trading Corp, a commodities firm that specialized in bartering and transporting various metals and coal from the then-dissolving Soviet Union.

Treff received his MBA from Pepperdine University and a BS in chemical engineering from The Pennsylvania State University.