swa66 - 5:30 am on Dec 28, 2012 (gmt 0)
MS won because Netscape crashed all the time and more importantly couldn't display most of the web. MS created the dreaded quirks mode just to make the web function and people flocked to it because it was the only thing that worked reliably. Just like Word and Excel, MSIE simply worked more reliably, which is what the masses wanted, no headaches, just an appliance to view the web.
Sorry Bill, but that's just not true.
- Netscape didn't crash ever (at least not on any of the supported Unix OSes - I didn't use any windows at the time.
- Couldn't display: well you were more often than not prohibited from displaying it cause some zealot put a script blocking you - a simple JS test to see if it was MSIE and if not you'd get booted out with the message to install IE
- IE on wintendo worked far less reliable than Netscape on unix
The world wide web was just fine before MSFT came along with IE - they messed it up more than anything else and we're still suffering from their lack of insight in how it was all supposed to work (reminder for those not having read the HTML 1.0 specs back then: server sends compliant code to the browser - browser is lenient in interpreting errors the server shouldn't send.)
I'll grant that Netscape in the browser wars did some serious missteps too <blink> e.g. should never have been supported - ever.
MSFT has done exactly nothing good for the web, quite on the contrary. They have employees on nearly every committee that makes the standards - yet they're continuously the only one making browsers that are systematically not compliant with those standards. They're also the only browser maker not allowing their browser to be upgraded on still in use OSes - just cause they can annoy us - or to continue their mantra that the browser is part of the OS - which they claimed to be since NT4 SP4 (but if you had not added IE, you could continue to upgrade NT4 without getting IE ...
Word reliable ? Seriously ? Ever used word for a long document ? It's guaranteed to make you start over a few times a day - no matter what version - no matter what service pack. Just try to use the hierarchical automated numbering and make a change on the style of the numbering on any long (100+ pages) document and poof it screws up the numbering - guaranteed - and you can't correct it anymore - better hope you have a saved copied from before the change and just not do those changes again as it will get you again and ultimately force you to go through the whole document and manually correct every title.
Just try to include an "floating" (to use the web terminology) image and then see what it does with positioning when it gets close to a footer.
Really there are far more superior and far more reliable packages - they just never became popular.
Ventura (old MS-DOS - SGML), FrameMaker (multiple OSes), Pages (Mac) etc. are all superior in various ways - and all are far more reliable.
But the good thing indeed are tablets and their use by consumers to "consume" - and that they are sporting nicely compliant browsers that like to work with the standards - let's keep MSFT out of that.