Dear Reader,

Last week on Monday, I posted a puzzle — identify the web browser by the screen shot I took… before I answer the question… lets look at this:

First… Firefox!   Sleek design, great developer tools… fast… most people swear by Firefox as the best browser out there… can it be outdone?  At least one blogger thinks so HERE

Now… Google Chrome!   Customizable sleek design… compatible with the tour de force of cloud computing — Google, GMail … not as strong on developer tools… fast browsing .. can it be outdone?

Now… up and coming…. RockMelt… Similar to GoogleChrome in design – sleek… working on being compatible with everything… no developer tools yet… fast browsing… yet with an added punch!   Social networking while you are at it — complete connectivity to Facebook and the ability to interact real-time sharing and IM….   Still in Beta version…

… And finally, the web browser from last week….   Drum Roll HERE

IE9 !  Yes, that’s right — Internet Explorer from Microsoft.   New, sleek design that matches Windows 7 and Vista Aero.   After seeing it in action at Microsoft’s District office in Waltham, I decided to give it a test drive.   Does it deliver?

I found the old, cludgy browing to be a thing of the past.  It was moving fast.  Developer tools?   They are there and in spades creating a great rival for Firefox’s Firebug for those of you developers.   I’d check it out if you have the inclination… any drawbacks?

The bitter battle between Microsoft and Google became evident when I couldn’t open a document from a link.   It was a Google Doc and I got a page error.   I opened Google Chrome and had no problem.

Made me feel like an innocent bystander caught in a crossfire.   My word of advice to the big guys — drop the egos and bury the hatchet and work with us developers.   I don’t care who did who wrong first.  I just want to get my work done.

It reminds me of a moment out of Star Trek — yes, the original Star Trek and I am a nerd.   Spock had romanced the Romulan leader during war to win a victory.  The Federation was seeking the mystery of the cloaking device.

“You realise that very soon we will learn to penetrate the cloaking device you stole… Military secrets are the most fleeting of all.”[1]

In time, competing companies will learn to penetrate the technical secrets of the competing companies. Perhaps, like military secrets, technical secrets are the most fleeting of all.

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