Microsoft today we released Internet Explorer Platform Preview 3 at an event in San Francisco.
The Internet Explorer Platform Preview allows developers to
test the new Internet Explorer 9 web development and design
codename Chakra ? as well as our support for standards like
HTML5, CSS3, SVG 1.1 and DOM.
At the event at the "12 Gallagher Lane" gallery in San
Francisco, Ryan Gavin and Rob Mauceri from the IE team
introduced Internet Explorer Platform Preview 3 to the
assembled press with some new demos on the IE Test Drive
The third Platform Preview of Internet Explorer 9,
continues the work around hardware acceleration to enable
the same standards-based markup to run faster. The support
for text, graphics, and media uses the underlying hardware
through Windows, making the full power of the PC available
for the Web.
Webkit Sunspider is one measure of script performance. The
continues to get faster. Here?s the chart:
Below you can see a zoomed-in chart with the progresss
showing just the IE9 platform previews and the pre-release
versions of other browsers:
According to the above results provided by Microsoft and
looking the differences between the script engines'
performance, you see the performance gaps between the
fastest script engines are now less than 50 milliseconds ?
and that?s executing several million script instructions
during the benchmark test. This difference is already under
any human perception threshold, Microsoft says.
However, the browser performance is not entirely
continue to focus on real-world performance and not
optimize for any specific benchmark.
Hardware accelerated canvas, video and audio
With the third platform preview, Microsoft also introduces
support for the HTML5 Canvas element. Like all of the
graphics in IE9, canvas is hardware accelerated through
Windows and the GPU. Hardware accelerated canvas support in
IE9 illustrates the power of native HTML5 in a browser.
As the browser uses more of the hardware, users' experience
depends on the hardware they have, just as it always has.
With hardware accelerated graphics, the graphics card and
driver combination play a significant role in how users
experience the various examples and benchmarks.
The first two IE9 platform previews demonstrated hardware
acceleration of text, images, and vector graphics. Preview
3 completes the media landscape for modern websites with
hardware accelerated video, audio, and canvas. Developers
now have a comprehensive platform to build hardware
accelerated HTML5 applications. This is the first browser
that uses hardware acceleration for everything on the web
page, on by default, available today for developers to
start using for their modern site development.
Web browsers should render the same markup ? the same HTML,
same CSS, and same script ? in the same way. That?s simply
not the case today across many browsers and many elements
of markup. Enabling the same markup to work the same across
different browsers is as crucial for HTML5?s success as
performance. Microsoft's investments in standards and
interoperability are all about enabling the same markup to
just work. When developers spend less time re-writing their
sites to work across browsers they have more time to create
amazing experiences on the web.
The third platform preview continues to support more of DOM
and CSS3 standards that developers want.
Also included in the third platform preview is support for
using the Web Open Font Format (WOFF) through CSS3 font
face. Microsoft worked with Mozilla and Opera to submit
the WOFF file format to the W3C, and in IE9 to bring
quality font support to the web in a way that is friendly
to web designers, font foundries, and end users.
Like all of the text rendered in IE9, the support for WOFF
makes the most of the underlying hardware and Windows
DirectWrite for high quality rendering with sub-pixel
precision, resulting in smooth, text across font sizes and
browser zoom levels.
Of course, the importance of WOFF support is having the
same markup provide the same results for text and
typography - results developers and designers can depend
improves support for ECMA-262: ECMAScript Language
Specification standard, including features new to the
recently finalized Fifth Edition of ECMA-262 (often called
ES5 for short). This support for ES5 includes new array and
object methods, as well as other language enhancements for
working with strings and dates.
Some people use Acid3 as a shorthand for standards. Acid3
tests about 100 fragments of a dozen different
technologies. Some are still in "under construction." Some
of the patterns, like SMIL animations, are inconsistent
with others, like CSS3 animations, and need to be
reconciled. Currently, the IE9 Platform Preview scores a
83/100 in the Acid3 test, compared to the 68/100 score if
the previous platform preview.
Enabling developers to accurately measure website
performance is important to delivering great HTML5
applications. Today, developers can measure different
aspects of performance on their own machines with the
Developer Tools; they can?t, however, measure the
performance their users actually experience. Today, many
sites develop their own libraries that try to measure live
performance on web pages. The problem is that these
libraries actually slow down the pages for consumers and
measure inaccurately, driving the wrong behavior for
Microsoft believes that the WebTiming specification
is a good
conceptual foundation for solving this problem. The company
is in conversations with the W3C HTML5 standards body and
developers at Google and Mozilla about this, and how they
can all work together to make WebTiming happen in an
interoperable and standardized way.
Microsoft will also work with the W3C and its members over
the coming months to get this into an official working
group and build consensus for a proposed specification
while continuing to work together to ensure that the same
markup works across browsers.
In order to keep making progress in the interim, Microsoft
has included early support for these ideas in the IE9
preview. You can take a closer look at how this works in
the WebTiming sample on the test drive site.
Microsoft encourages users and developers to download the
latest preview, try the samples on the test drive site
, andtry their own sites.
The platform preview installs side by side with Internet
Explorer 8 so that users can try it without replacing the
full version of Internet Explorer that comes with Windows.
This third release of the Internet Explorer 9 Platform
Preview will install over the prior versions. More
information on what?s included in this release of the
Platform Preview is available in the Release Notes