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Browser Stories.

Posted June 20, 2013

There has always been something about Microsoft’s copy that bothers me. From their marketing copy on the IE download page, to their IE developer blog. I never quite could quite tell why.

Was it the arrogant tone with pleaful text shouting, “Look! We’re faster than Chrome with these benchmarks we wrote!”?

Was it the constant digs at other browser vendors in the midst of an otherwise sensible post?

No, no. Neither of these were the core of my discomfort.

You see, I have been thinking about my purpose in doing what I do, what are the qualities in the men and women I want to have close relationships with. Then it struck me. The complete and utter difference of tone amongst the browser vendors.

Disclaimer: I am primarily a Chrome user. This came about because I started getting serious about web development shortly before Chrome came out and I it’s developer tools blew Firebug out of the water. And Google was telling a better story with Chrome.

A short survey on the purpose of browser vendors.

Mozilla

To improve the web for humans through safety, personalization, and security. To make the web ubiquitious. (Sure, their primary mission has shifted slightly in recent years).

Purpose: the betterment of human lives.

Google

To push the web platform forward. To improve the lives of web developers everywhere. To make the web ubiquitious.

Purpose: the betterment of human lives.

Apple

In all things, be user-centered. Provide users with the best experience.

Purpose: the betterment of human lives.

Opera

Push the web platform forward. Be a voice of change and reason in the vendor community and a staple in the standards process.

Purpose: the betterment of human lives

Microsoft

Be number one in the market.

Purpose: survive, thrive, and somehow hopefully even win against the competition.

The Contrast

This is not a direct endorsement or dig against any of these companies now any individuals within them. Each of these companies are filled with noble individuals with noble intentions.

Stories are powerful. They shape our lives. The stories we tell are impacting and changing the landscape around us.

In the many months since I first wrote this draft Microsoft has been changing. The IE developer relations team behind modern.ie are doing a far superior job changing the story that Microsoft is telling.


These words brought to you by Dustan Kasten. A friendly, bearded, husband, father, and user interface engineer living in Charlotte, NC. Considers himself quite partial to React.js these days. Find @iamdustan on Twitter