Choosing to go with better security and privacy
By Red Squirrel
Fact: This PNG image would look nicer if you were not using Internet Explorer
Browsing the Internet is probably what most people spend time doing with their Internet connection. There are other things to use the connection for such as P2P, chat etc… but they all require actually going on the web to get the programs, so you'll use a browser for that. In this article, I will go over what is the safest way to browse the Internet, because it is certainly not what is bundled with Windows!
Internet Explorer, also known to many people as Internet Exploder, is the worse way to browse the Internet. Unfortunately, most people do use it, simply because it comes with the computer, and if you never experienced another browser, you don't know what it's like and figure IE is the only way to go.
Internet Explorer is like driving a car on coals with a leaking gas tank. One little bad move and you go bye bye. IE has so many security flaws, just going on the wrong site could end up making your computer filled with spyware and hijacks. A hijack is like a virus, but it's sole purpose is to take advantage of Internet Exploder's lack of security and doing bad things to the computer, and IE. So most likely changing the home page, causing porn popups to appear etc... Usually they lock themselves in so you can't just go change it, you need something more serious such as hijackthis, which is a great program for hijack removal.
The main problem is that IE allows sites to do anything to the computer... people need to get this straight: The Internet is not a game. For advanced networking features, write a downloadable program! An example is an online virus scanner. It's a program that takes control of the computer, but in a good way. Now if that's possible to do through a browser, it's scary what else is possible... But only IE supports this type of thing, that I know of. I recall seeing another browser supporting the Trend Micro virus scan, but it actually asked permission to install the plug in! IE won't ask permission, it will just do it. Good for some things such as a virus scanner, but bad for other things such as malicious code that will screw with your home page and do other nasty things.
There are new security flaws found daily in Internet Explorer. Just do a search for "internet explorer" "execute code" in Google to see what I mean, those are just the flaws that allow code to be executed... and that is pretty nasty...I mean, how could Microsoft, a multi trillion-dollar company possibly do that by accident? When you can execute code through something, you need to actually program that something, no? This article is not to start conspiracies, but it seems to me some of these IE flaws are not exactly "flaws", but rather "features"... There's all sort of protection methods to prevent these things, but it's sad to think that you even need all that just to surf the Internet.
There's also rendering flaws. For example, <input type crash> html code will actually cause it to crash! Accident? Hmmm, coincidence really. Actually you can replace the word crash with pretty much anything. That's even more scary, since what if you put code that crashes IE inside of there... hmmm experimentation. Heck you could make it recursive and really screw things up. But that's quite allot of code when you think that <style>@/* can also do the same. Scary eh? Ditch it! It's worth the "effort" to upgrade to a better browser.
IE is also horrible at standards. W3C, the World Wide Web Consortium is an organization that helps develop Internet standards. Browsers are supposed to follow it to ensure a better Internet experience. That way anyone from anywhere using any browser can view any page and it will look the same as what the webmaster intended, assuming he used W3C standards or close. Because IceTeks is a dynamic site, it is hard to make it perfectly W3C compliant, but we sure do our best to not use non standard code when there is standard alternatives. Lot of CSS attributes can replace non standard html attributes, such as width="".
Microsoft doesn't care about standards. Try to throw some hardcore CSS at Internet Explorer and you won't get much back. While IE, being old as it is, surprisingly supports CSS, it still lacks support for allot of it's elements. Also, IE renders allot of things differently then it's support to. Table borders are one thing; take a look at this example here:
Notice how IE messes up on the borders of one of the articles. One thing you must realize is that this is dynamic code. It's a php script that uses the same code for each entry, the same way as a forum works. So it's obviously not a fault in the code, since if it was, it would do it on every one.
As for the shoutbox, that is unexplainable, and unacceptable. What's somewhat strange is that it works in some IE builds, it does not matter what version. I've ran a few tests with win2K default installation (what this is tested with) and some of them work, some don't. The french version of IE 6.0 rendered better then the English version of IE 6.0... like what the?
This is a slight example of IE messing up on renders. There are many more. It's best to make your website look good in Mozilla or Opera or any other alternative, because even though it won't look good in IE, the browser most people use, it won't look THAT bad. But if you make it look good in IE, it will look horrible in other browsers. So it's another reason to switch to another browser, so you can test your site in it instead of IE, and optimize it for standard.
On the next page, we'll quickly review two browsers to give you a general idea of which one you'd like.
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