Wed, 20 December 2006
Ok, so Microsoft has released Internet Explorer 7, which it claims is its most advanced and powerful version of IE to date. No doubt, with the unexpected delay in releasing Vista, Microsoft is desperate to throw Windows users a few bones until the big launch, so they have released new versions of Media Player and Explorer.
My computer is set up to download updates to the Windows software automatically as they become available, and I recently upgraded to Media Player 11 and Internet Explorer 7. I have good news and bad news about my experience.
First, the good news. Media Player 7 does seem to be an improvement over the previous versions. The standard skin is a nice, sleek black color, which more than slightly resembles the styling on the Zune player. The album library now features cover art for the songs, provided the cover art is available. It's not iTunes, but it is getting better.
Some more good news comes from Internet Explorer 7. Microsoft has taken a cue from Firefox and Netscape and streamlined the appearance of IE 7, and the browser more than slightly resembles Firefox at first glance. New to this version is an anti-phishing detector which scans all websites and warns the user if the possibility of phishing exists. Other welcome features include the addition of tabbed browsing, which seemed to be limited to people using Windows Professional in earlier versions (correct me if I am wrong, please), and continued support for a person's preferred search engine.
Now, the bad news. IE7 is unbelievably slow. The anti-phishing routine does not run quickly enough, and a page takes forever to load, even on 100MB DSL.
Furthermore, after installing IE7 and restarting (why, oh why do we have to restart any time we install a Microsoft product?) Windows, I took the tour that Microsoft furnished when IE7 automatically launched after the restart. After seeing just how well Microsoft had tried to copy Firefox and include stuff everybody has had for at least a year already, I closed the browser. I immediately got the "Internet Explorer has encountered an error and must close..." error box. Needless to say, I sent that little error report to Microsoft This crash is not a fluke, as I have had it happen several times since when I close the browser, and Microsoft tries to blame it on a Yahoo! toolbar that needs to be updated. Yes, I did update it, and nothing has changed. Maybe they needed to spend a little more time on beta testing and a little less time on the tour program?!
So far, I am sticking with Firefox, and I am really not enthusiastic about the upcoming Vista launch. Maybe I do need to get a Mac...
Category:general -- posted at: 12:13am EDT
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