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Thursday, August 23, 2001

Y'know, I used to be a Netscape user. I hated IE when it first came out. I hate everything that Microsoft does. I hate the fact that Microsoft comes stomping in, looks around to see what is big, and then creates a product based on that and tries to run the other guy out of business. I think Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer are two rather evil chaps. Nonetheless, as time has passed, Netscape has been worn down and 6.0 just isn't usable. Version 4.7 is weak at best and IE really has surpassed Netscape for basic usability. The ability to hit enter and have it submit forms alone is enough to send me running to IE at this point. Save me extra keystrokes and mouse clicks? You bet!

Unfortunately, at some point a million years ago (or maybe five or ten), Stanford bought a site license for Netscape Navigator. This apparently happened at some point in history long enough ago that web browsers weren't free. I haven't been able to glean anything further on the subject from anyone because conversations on the subject usually go like this:

"So why do so many people at Stanford use Netscape?" I ask.
"Because we have a site license," they respond.
"But it's free. Why do you need a site license?" I ask.
"Because we have a site license," they respond.
"But it's free!" I restate.
"But we have a site license..."
"Oh."

So the result is that 80% of the campus uses it.

I've been working on creating a WBL course for PeopleSoft stuff. It works fabulously on IE. There are these really great interactions that look like you're really in the system even though it's just screen shots. You click through, and it goes to the next anchor so there's not even any time between graphic loads, even though the graphics are huge. Anyway, it's all done in a special popup window without scrollbars or anything, so you don't even notice that you're not changing pages. EXCEPT, that stupid Netscape 4.7x on Windows (not on Mac apparently) can't jump to the next anchor unless the browser window itself is displaying scroll bars!!! AAAAAAARGH! I'm going to go shoot myself now thankyouverymuch. Ugh.

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