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TechStuff Classic: The Story of Internet Explorer, Part 1

2022-04-29 | 🔗

Nate Lanxon from Bloomberg joins the show to talk about the history of Internet Explorer and the future of Project Spartan.

See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
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comes to your financial goals. Potential is the rock you can rely on with our knowledgeable financial professionals. We can help you get to new heights plan, invest in sure, retire visit potential, dot, com, Uzi or Rock Prudential Insurance Company of America of Newark New Jersey. The welcome to tech stuff, a production from I heart, radio, the t there and welcome to tech stuff. I'm your host Jonathan Strickland, I'm an executive producer with Iheart Radio and how the tech on it's time for a classic episode of stop this episode originally published on. May fourth, two thousand fifteen so hate STAR Wars day. It is tight, the story of Internet explorer part one, which I guess beans, you can probably
have a pretty good idea of what next week's classic episode is gonna, be this episode featured special guest Nate Langsyne Nate is awesome great text analyst. I should have him on the show. Again. It's been too long, since I last spoke with him hope you enjoy. mate is joining me to talk about internet Splore, and the reason why we're talking about it is that it, A web browser has a very long history, The other history now seems to have an end cap to it, because Microsoft appears to be leaving internet explorer behind embracing a new product that currently is Cody Project Spartan, but will probably have some different name once it actually goes live So we are going to cover the dramatic history that's filled with tons of of trusting stories as it turns out
to really get started, we have to turn the clock back before was ever any web browsers at all the birth of the first web browser which we can trace back. to Christmas day December twenty fifth night team. Ninety. while ninety ninety m c m c Romans, would have called it right. I am glad you took that whenever I start thinking about roman numerals, I have to start dialing I x, I I I, which only makes sense for the listeners here in America so TIM Berners Lee was working at at CERN thing, people who are responsible for the large hadron the lighter and had developed a a programme, That would allow for the retrieval and display of information.
in a way that would make sense, make it easy to navigate. This would become the first web browser which is kind of funny, because without the web, How are you really don't? Have a world wide web? You definitely had an internet, because the internet is a network of networks and a lot of people. I realize, maybe this is as bad as it used to be, but a lot of people often well sir. the web and mean internet or vice versa, though use the terms yes tangibly mine, I only I've described it in the past actually to people. You get this wrong as the web is the car on the highway. That is the internet right. They are, they are with the websites on top of it That's right, and there are other vehicles on that same highway right, because iraqi email does not have to be web based ftp nor filed as for protocol other protocols intact,
way. I originally really made use of the internet back in the day was through the town that chat client. I use that a lot when I was in college as a way of tracking myself and making friends with people who were more into the same things I was into. I went to for the first two years of my schooling, a small com did he college in rural Georgia and a lot of the people? I was rounded and share the same interests. I did so tat It was one of those things that allowed me to go beyond that, but that was before it ever heard of the world wide web and web browsers. So We have to remember that, this time before they were browsers that there were, there were not really in a user friendly ways of accessing information. You kind I had to really dive into the Tec and stand commands in order to get
anything out of it. Even if those commands were fairly simple. It was an island of barrier of entry that there are a few of us playing in that in that world. At that time, right I mean there are. people in colleges and research facilities and governments that had access to it for various official purposes, there are very few like fun applications outside of some wacky people. Saying hey: This computer, that's crunching numbers for Europe, you're a strong be class. We can also make it plain to attack. Tell her I mean around about this time. There were also other similar projects. They think that were going on at CERN, like Peter built. So do not, repeating necessarily, but there were other programmes that were created The sort of brows and energy while visual way, right and and It turns out that this was a brilliant idea than other logs thing. Tat it all back out is just a quick explanation of why
going on with a web browser for those of you who are you know of more casual fans of technology. This might be her well for those of you who we know are really deep in that field. This is going to sound incredibly simplistic, but we have to talk about what a client is and what a sir. So. Your client is essentially your machine that device you're using to end up with eating information from some other computer, a server which actually holds the information that you are interested in. So if you are using a web browser to visit a web page there, somewhere in the world, a computer that has all that information on it and it gets the request from. browser the client and says all right well here's what you asked for and since it across the internet you. Browser is in charge of displaying that information in some way that, hopefully, is useful and and informative and that's
basic relationship that the web browser is built around its, not the only client server relationship it. It's a great example of I never anything interesting because I am sure we will be coming to later the relationship, between the idea of a client seven model really has not changed and in fact, when you get into the likes of the Chrome Ios, the browser is just a dumb client is against him. Model for the entire, alas, and essentially, but that we were moving. forward twenty five years old. At that point, the nice thing is that this model works so well that it ended up being the foundation for a lot of different applications, including the chrome operating system and and, of course, we're seeing more and more services and applications migrating to the internet side of things where we see this. This I mean it's kind of sea saw him. Right on one side, we see hardware
factors that are still saying: no, no, no. You really want the strongest fastest machine possible and meaning All the service providers are saying we're handling all the heavy lifting you just need a device that can connect to us. That way. We the control of the stop serves its budgets As of this relationship with that kind of infrastructure is even possible. I mean it. I mean that's the interesting thing, also just as a slight tat each a tangent, I suppose about more law, which is celebrating an anniversary at the moment. Is that it? he's been assumed that we need the most and biggest and fast his power in our computers, because you want to do more and more things locally. which in a way that was always gonna be true, you would need less and less on the on the service side outside of the well that the realms of the web but, of course, Oh, it's becoming much more about efficiency and and low cost, and its thinness in
devices, and so we don't need that sort of huge lifting power within the machines were currently using ourselves, which makes a browser the perfect interface for a modern machine because it just needs to be the go between the conduit, between the very powerful server and the very small, powerful, less powerful, desktop machine, old or laptop or tab. Little note book Have you any bones: most law has a man should become irrelevant beforehand, it becomes wrong. you know, we do not need that power, that sort of doubling of power every eighteen months, because we have actually The need for that power anymore at Moore's law originally was all about the financial side of the fact that there were these finance all drivers that were incentive to create these increasingly more powerful and smaller components on square inch of silicon, now we're going to a point where, if, if we don't need
that then there's less incentive. So there made- He a point of pride among some. You know engineers and computer scientists who want to keep pushing that envelope and try and make it. You know try and beat their record in a way. But if the the demand Isn't there then, like you, said more life could become obsolete before we hit that funding and to limit from the laws of physics that the car had gone through. The same exponential growth that Moore's law predicted or for silicon. You would be able to do a hundred miles Not one so the millilitre of fuel, and that would cost you twenty five cents right in a car that cost twenty five cents right. and in order to get back to the world that where this is This being so, this is a relevant thing going
the early ninetys, as these are the days where of early nineties. I was in high school about to go to college early the mid nineties? That's my high school college eaters. in those early nineties, you started seeing lots different programmers bill. Their own web browsers A lot of them were within certain. Some of them were in colleges and universities and I would like to see more people get access to it, because it was very clear that this was going to be a useful tool to navigate information. We move on two February, ninety ninety three and when Mark Andriessen and Eric Bina of the National Centre for supercomputing applications at the University of Illinois, Urbana Champagne, eighty in sea, a our mutual friend Tom Merit, I believe, went to the University of Illinois so you're saying they decide to introduce a browser themselves. That was the mosaic browser. It was on. You
I was also, whereas the the Ex Windows platform and their colleagues, Alex Total created a version that could run on Mackintosh computer. So this was a browser that could run across platforms. Although the appeal, prince of web information vary depending on what platform you are using. So it wasn't a smooth the experience across all platforms. It wasn't something that was it wasn't like. You were going to get the exact same experience on one machine as on another, but you could get to the information I am one of the features that set it apart from the earlier web, browsers like things that we take for granted now like bookmarks, that would being able to to Mark a specific web pages. Something of interest so that you can easily navigate to it in the future was really important, also icons and pictures, as opposed to just text which made it more attractive to look at any, was free to use. And it's important to mention this beforehand, because
it turns out, allow the the stuff they worked on would later find its way into other future web browsers by lighting army for market Risa would partner with Job Clark and who is the founder of Silicon Graphics. They created mosaic communications. It was later remained to Netscape communications. And they started to develop a web browser for the consumer market so that Gaza really familiar to anyone who was the using computers around the time of the first browser wars, Netscape should definitely ring a bell the high around the time that the windows- ninety five- is basically about to go gold and I'm go on said. So we still I'm in windows, three point one error at the moment. I thank you and, and I mean that the net. gave navigator, I think, was the very I might have used Mosaic when I was in college, come to think of it, but I'm pretty sure I quickly transition to Netscape navigator.
and I began my browser of choice in those days I ask you need what browser you typically use When you I use Safari four I think so you are, you are clearly a MAC owner. I may and the owner, I love Safari, because I I use almost no add ons at all, because I just want speed and fast and I needed to think everything so far is always what really well for me. That makes sense I I detest, Safari, with a passion, the birds brighter than the thousand explained guns, but it's mostly because I dont use of MAC, but did you MAC Bed like if you're in the apple infrastructure, it's amazing, if you're, all in Its phenomenal you're only and a sort of an aid gets really irritating really quickly. But then I am all in on the Google infrastructures I use chrome, Ah, yes, does the difference. You see me is the browser. Is the thing
he was the most. I would imagine, and so if your phone is the thing that you can we can use the most in the day, then it stands to reason that you're gonna want to use a browser that what's best on a phone right and it's gonna be I head to some of the issues with internet explorer? So so making any for we get the DMZ essay licensing the commercial rights to Mosaic to accompany that was called at the time. Spyglass company no longer exists should tell you how things turn out in the EU. Spyglass ended up, licensing that same technology to other companies, including Microsoft. So the mosaic code ends up making it wait, a Microsoft, and I was really important- Microsoft has ass. Neat- was saying they were preparing windows, ninety five per launch- and they really want to have a component in there. That would be a web browser and
They had decided that it made more sense to licence that technology from someone else rather than trying to do to develop it in house. So that's what led them to spy glass and licensing be mosaic code. we'll be back with more of this classic episode of text of after this quick break. windows eleven, gives people new ways to get more done. Snap assist lets you organ as you are open windows at once, with a click multiple desktops. Make it easier than ever to switch between work, school and everything else, plus a screen, you can actually touch means less typing, more crime. eating windows. Eleven brings you closer to what you love discover more way,
is to get more done with windows. Eleven pcs at windows, dot, com, slash brings you closer. This episode is brought to you by square one if your business could sell anywhere at anytime and open to more customers all by making one simple choice: running your business with square means being able to sell just as easily whether it's in person an online or on social media. Your business will also be ready for whatever new sales channels might open. Next go to square dot com, slash commerce, to learn what possible square helps you reach, customers everywhere they are and you can get paid anyway. You shoes with one convenient place to manage everything square lets you. add more revenue streams without adding any more work to your day. Good, a square dot com, slash commerce, to learn Watts possible fortune favours the bold, the strong, the brave
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comes to your financial goals. Potential is the rock you can rely on with our knowledgeable financial professionals. We can help you get to new heights plan, invest in sure, retire visit potential, dot, com, Uzi or Rock Prudential Insurance Company of America of New October. Ninety nine he bore Netscape release of beta version of their project, which was code name Mozilla become important. Later too, it was designated zero point. Nine six b I cited early on that when I we start looking at the actual builds of internet explorer organism, whole numbers. Only because otherwise. The path leads to madness, We are going to consider chrome version. Twenty six point, nine point six! Fourthly, did you point three states for
I was a seminal relief. I mean it was beautiful, really every day that the fact that it improves so much upon the pressure Sesar that came out earlier that same day is No, I'm going to skin button yeah. So we move on to two August, twenty third, ninety, ninety five- that is the day Microsoft released the window. eighty five operating system may I still remember the commercials for windows. Ninety five. They had the bad this little band are the rolling stones. At a song called start me up that was played during the windows. Ninety five commercials cause. That was also the introduction of the start button on windows, the little button that wouldn't quit or people wouldn't let the little button quit and they introduced a web browser which they named internet explorer lessons it was. It was in fact a way to navigate through the internet, specifically the world wide web
but this is. This is a point I just interjected, because this is the thing I've always hated about internet explorer. Is that it's a wet browser right. Why is it called web explorer. I think I think they were afraid they might have a new, let some sort of confusion with spiders or something I don't know need its. It confuses me too Internet explorer. One point out, came out with windows. Ninety five they had an agreement with Spyglass, which was incredibly clever. Some might call it sneaky and underhanded other agreement with Spyglass, so Spyglass makes the decode the technology at internet explorer runs on internet explore the degree. A spy glass was that Microsoft would pay a quarterly fee to spyglass aright. That's cool and they also agree to share royalties our internet explore bite. My
I thought also decided to bundle internet explorer with windows. Ninety five, so internet explorer itself wasn't on sale and so not selling it. You can't make royalties, which means they didn't have to share earning money from the windows. Ninety five sales to spy glass, which above me he you're, pretty sneaky that would end up biting them but later, but at any rate the time they're just like hey. We really scored on this. Now when they started only six Microsoft employees according to every source. I saw only say People in Microsoft were actually working on internet explorer, which is kind of hard to believe today ended at the time the web was not what you and I are used to it had about twenty basic tags and html that allowed you to come, front pages and changed the style things like tables and and the font size that kind of stuff
so really really basic, and if you ever look at screen shots of old, browsers and old web pages. I mean it mostly looks like the blame, Wikipedia page. You have ever seen with no pictures or anything like that. A lot of the early ones don't have eat pictures on them, because we did put a picture on it. Then you were shooting yourself but most of us did not have any fast connection to any kind of network. So accessing website, with pictures meant that you would start near you. navigate to the page, walk away from your computer for ten minutes and then come back to see pictures that all followed I remember well, I remember when I was trying to view pictures on the now defunct page cat scan. Why people would use flatbed scanners to scan the underside of the cat, Ryan's you I could actually walk away and be very british and make a cup of tea while waiting for the photo of a cat to arrive on my computer
I guess this is the point where I I I mentioned nature has two particular great passions and life which include metal and cats. Yes and the other ones, but they are the ones I am known for it seems that those are the those are the two I whenever I I, I hear a ping from you on social media. There's a there's, a problem Forty percent chance, it's gonna fall into one of those two categories: yeah, there's still Well, a few other things, but they don't they don't they don't hit as high of a slice of the pie. Chart. Yes, that's very true, very true, so one of the things about The limitations of html that were there was a particular thorn the sides of early web browsers and web users. was that the limitations met. People had to find creative ways around those limitations to create rich user experiences. I don't do that or use that term in the UK, the rich user experience
or one that experience something. We probably heard it quite a bit. I don't remember Italy by I imagine it was that, amongst all the other ones like that drives and right, it would be the rich user experience. That was something where the idea was that you wanted to create a a an experience for the user, that what and beyond, just simple tax lines and pictures so why the earliest ones would be middys that would loop and there be no way to stop them. You remember those yeah, I do remember those yes Middys, my goodness middys. Yes, So, just the days of my space, where you would go to ones. Myspace page this was that goes beyond what were time I hear, but even then the not not I'm not sad to see those days go. However, what it meant was that people had to create software. That would be a plug in an enhancement to a web browser.
To allow users to access certain types of content, largely streaming content, whether it was audio video. so again a web browser. In those days you too often enhance it. With these plugins made the browsers cache, here slower, they caught, they required more memory. In those days. Also, memory was not as plentiful as Today, computer memory, so Your whole computer would start run more slowly. If you tried to access anything that had any kind of no less your flash animation flashes another example, some plugins, that you had to have an order. it more out the web pages are, we would not see at all. And says to HTML for a while. That would address this. The whole point of HTML five is too to take away the need for all these different plugins that often can become security vulnerabilities they're. Giving that this way we can support that those those different from
natively with an html and not after her. Of a swiss army knife style web browser where you ve added all these extra features anyway The first version of internet explorer was about bare bones, as you can get and arm Second, one came out November, twenty second, ninety, ninety five. So if you're number. I said the first one came out August, twenty third, ninety, ninety five, I e to comes out November, twenty second, ninety, ninety five that incredibly narrow window for an entire version upgrade doubts. Fast does not really go into it. This one was for windows. Ninety five and windows nt three point five and when does indeed or Bueno. Means within three months you get a full version, upgrade but that was actually kind of typical in the early days, because the browser
we're being we're getting more and more advanced, very quickly. Everyone was really interested in this. This was the days when the media, was starting to take notice of the worldwide web and it was going beyond just the the governments in colleges and research facilities. So with that oak, as you want to really get your browser to to be united. the nation people. Why did go to the people needed this technology? There is another feet that date or people needed in internet explorer to I remember, What's I'm yum yum, delicious cookies? Ah, You know what those are important They they ve been misused, and that is on board they can cause huge problems. They are definitely one of those You gotta worry about if you are concerned about internet privacy. However, That being said, it's also needed to be able to navigate to a website you're in
of doing something you have to shut down and leave when you navigate to that same website. On that same machine. You can pick up right where you left off. That's thanks to cookies, so These are just really short short bits of data, really just short, not short range of bets. If you're gonna get down to it they act as a kind of identifier and placeholder, so that when you the session with a web page the webs. Eight, the web server can keep track of who war, and what you are doing so that if you do leave for some reason and come back, you can pick up where you left off. In retail, for example, if I put something shopping, cart, but I haven't completed the transaction and I leave the website the next time I go back to that website, I might still have that item in the shopping cart, because the cookies tell
the server hey, it's that same dude, who just can't commit to purchasing this squeaky twice or his dog, to be of great example. For me, certain cookies, definitely had their place, but obviously have been. They got a lotta there's, a lot of bad rap about cookies to because of things like the idea of tracking web browsing activity, Anne and sharing things that you might have thought were private otherwise, but they come from a good place. They do and they are useful. Let's be honest, they are very Oh yeah web would not be what the web is now in a bad way. I think you were it not for cookies. They just allowed the internet to be more personal, yeah yeah, exactly you know the idea that the Euro, experience on the web is at least in some part,
fine by and tuned to you so that you have the experience you want, I released if you're working at it, you can have the experience of one. I wish that it were effortless so that just through the use of the web comes the way you want for some people, it becomes the way it is other than the way, they wanted to be because they don't know the tricks to kind of tune it as much as they they would like. but without cookies that would not be possible at all. You would just have the same experience every single time you logged into any webpage. It would be as if you are there day, zero. Like that's the first time you had ever visited it and you would have to go through whatever it is. You know like whether it's logging into a service or adding things into a list whatever that might be. You would have to do that every single time, if it weren't for things like cookies, yeah
The next version of internet explorer number three. If we keep him out wooden, come along until August thirteen nineteen, ninety six, so they went The full year, unthinkable without coming up with a new version the first one to really start to get some traction envy web browser wars, because The other browsers had. First of all, you gotta keep in mind. So a pretty small piece of the overall population pie there weren't that many people online on the web in nineteen. Ninety six and there were there were lots. But if you, compared to the number of people who work, it was a tiny number them. said, there were things like like gum, Netscape and mosaic, and other browsers that were already they already had a good share of the market. So I was just going to pick up by the end of ninety seven. It accounted for about a third of the browser market just under
around thirty percent, and that gives us into the browser wars which are like star wars, but more boring. but in my notes I wrote many boffins died to bring us this information. I am so out of my death to even the stand. Why that it's funny you owe me going, I haven't even seen all the star wars, films It's me to hear that. But then again, my former my my original co host Chris Polet, I don't think even to this day, has seen the movie jaws so he's. Ah, he he, he killed a a small piece of me that day when he revealed that information, but that of course, is a quote, we ve got more to say in this classic episode of text of after these quick messages, windows. Eleven gives people new ways to get more done. Snap assist lets you organ as your open windows at once, with a click multiple desktops
make it easier than ever to switch between work, school and everything else. Plus a screen, you can actually touch means less typing more crew eating. When does eleven, brings you closer to what you love discover more ways more done with windows. Eleven pcs at windows, dot, com, slash brings you closer. This episode of text of has brought to you by royal Caribbean accrue sounds good right now. Doesn't it now is the time to make them? most of your vacation and a royal caribbean cruise gives you the chance to have an experience, unlike any other choose from over two hundred seventy destinations, including Alaska, Europe, the Caribbean and even perfect day, Island Royal Caribbeans, own private getaway in the Bahamas: go on an adventure aboard some of the world's biggest ships boy live, entertainment, world class, dining and amazing activities. Try shipboard skydiving with ice.
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business to break out of anything holding you back, you need business checking as brave as you are. introducing Novo business, checking its powerfully simple, giving you all the features you need an unlikely, traditional banking, I don't know, but has no minimum balances, no transaction limits and no hidden fees instead of a one size fits all approach. Novo is customize to your business, to save you time and free up cash flow with seamless integration to stripe shop, if I click books online and or sign up for Novo for free and joined the community of over one hundred, fifty thousand fearless small businesses who found the customizable business
Decking solution that admires their bravery sign up for your free business, checking account right now at Novo dot C, o slash tech, stuff, plus text of listeners, get access to over five thousand dollars in perks and discounts. Go to n, o v, o dot c, o slash tech stuff to sign up for free, Novo, DOT C, o slash tech, Stuff Novo Platform incorporated is a fintech, not a bank banking services provider. At Middlesex Federal savings. F, a member F D. I c terms and conditions apply. The internet for three was often the first browser that did not use the spyglass source code. There were elements of spyglass technology in there, so that was still listed in the about age on internet explorer. They can. I have a license little bit about how some of the technology was licence
from them, but they had moved away from spyglass to start working on different source code to underlie internet explorer It was the first one to introduce internet mail to internet explorer and news one point: zero. and the windows address book Neither of those things would matter for very long, but they were included in internet explorer three, and they added in the support for lots of the plugins that Netscape could use- and that goes back to what I was talking about earlier- increase the ability or internet exe. Laura to access certain features that otherwise would just be unplayable, get a little red x saying this doesn't work here, and I remember it well, yeah this also by the way, one of the reasons why I love the development of HTML five and the conversion to HTML five. is that I also remember the days of those plans
and leading to lots of opportunities for hackers to create fake alert. Messages saying hey. I know you want to see this, but you can't, unless you first download the plug in or up update your plugin so that you can watch it, but in fact, instead of it actually being a plug in, it was a lie: arrests that you are agreeing to download and install tier machine, so you when those messages saying. Oh, you want to watch this, but you need to update to the latest version of real player, for example, and it Actually a real player, update or or install file. It was an install file for some malware that read that that was rampant. A certain point in the history of the internet, so the the slow migration away from the plug in days, is something that I have been waiting for for a long time. I got tired of answering the questions
The E3 also and support for cascading style sheets, nervous, again, very technical part of it, but it's a basically an easy way to define the style. The appearance of a page one of the things that was a big challenge in the early days of web browsers, making sure that the web page was going to show up the way the web designer intended. It Did you ever have to build a website without the use of all busy wig editor, something where you had to do it in, like a text editor? I taught myself to do it yet I'd I'd, do I do that in tax them? I am my girlfriend. Kate actually still does wow she she she can type responsive web stuff out in by hand. It's quite impressive. That is impressive, but the first web pages I ever built, which I am not I too share, so don't even bother looking for them because they are
awful if they do still exist somewhere out there. I am embarrassed by their presence. But at any rate, I also did that the old school way where you had a text editor, you typed in all the Markup language in the actual content of the web page, You will have to save it then, what app or browser navigate to the the proper address of that page, which probably wasn't even published online. Yet it was just native on your computer. Look See if it was actually showing up properly in the web browser you were using. and then, if anything, wasn't you had to quit out go back into your text, editor change things, and do it all over again. The bat in the early days is that even if you ve got to work properly on whichever web browser you are using, there is no guarantee that someone else's web browser a different web browser was going to show it in that same way. So you might take in two hours to pay instinctively create and craft a web page.
and if any one was using a different web browser, they might get a totally different experience anyway. So that was you don't know how easy you ve got it with your dynamic websites in your responsive designs. Back in those days, we were working out how to write out tables in right back in text. That is all There was this one piece of software that I'm beginning getting for free at some point and it used the html and it was actually was wheezy wig, but it was. It was like drag and drop and all the positions were sort of relative. So you could have object anywhere, and it was brilliant, now with oil was, wait for those of you who don't remember, don't know what that acronym stands for it's. What you see is what you get the idea. being that you have an editor that lets you, edit, with aunt like You were actually seeing what the web page looks like as your building it, so you don't have to do the swap between code and the appearance of the
age, it's all very, like you might be able most of them have an html editor component, seek and switch to html and just see markup, language and and type in that way, if you want to, but a lot of them have it where there are different templates that are built up, their entire business is based on that and some of them do in radically well, I use them in fact, when I'm building web pages these days, because while I remember doing html coding, It was also when there were very few tags. I don't think I could do it today because I we would not like a website from ninety ninety five. If I were to build one today that way and and while that would be committing it would not be very useful thanks for three was also when we got a very important development with I e that is the logo of the lower Casey, so that you get that. I call on the lower Casey that represents internet explore.
Dont know what our world would be like if they had gone with something else, a w the web. maybe the other out there again. I know it's madness, night man. Yes, it's that that would have led to great strife. world and nine days after I e three came out, security experts discovered a backdoor vulnerability that they, while the Princeton word macro virus loophole, so it had a very catchy name. Backdoor vulnerabilities are seriously bad news and no matter what software you're talking about, that, the sort of vulnerability that gives an attacker access to your machine at whatever level you are logged in at so Erica For example, you had Europe windows machine. You are logged in as an admin on that machine, but say that the level of access you habit of business,
your personal computer than yes at the access you have this backdoor. would give people that access is bad news. I mean they could make your. It will do whatever they wanted to that point. Install software that you didn't intend to haven't dolled or direct your computer to attack other other computers Mostly, I would just open. I would just mostly open people's CD draws print things out. messages on their screen. You no fire up. The Simpsons DOS game that kind of stuff- I do Know- I don't know- I have seen that happen. I remember seeing someone who had allow All that and their city drawer that all the Lawlor Drive door was opened and closed over and over there, like, I don't know, what's happening so what's happened, is you ve downloaded something you shouldn't have theirs handed over control to your computer, so we're gonna start in safe mode and will begin from there
we can fix yeah and uninstall bonds. I buddy you our at it yeah yeah man. in all ninety. Ninety six internet explorer would account for about a third of the browser market. Like I was talking about, that's where they really started to get tracks. and in nineteen ninety seven, the the USA stops supporting the development of Mosaic. So the the web browser that really started off? this off in a real way ahead Finally, can I have run out of steam on development side, but the the browser it's still use that basic technology and had continued to develop it. They they kept going like Netscape navigator continued on, although of course they had, they had forked off of the mosaic source code, so it was not the exact same stuff that was mosaic. It had
changed and evolved on it's own, it's kind of like if you look at an evolutionary tree and you see where two different species of fort same sort of thing here, except we're talking about computer programs, ITALY and ninety seven was also Spyglass threaten Microsoft, with a contractual on it because of that quarterly fee royalty arrangement. We talked about early, the fact that they were getting this courtly fee, but not really any royalties had kind of upsets that's because he said well when we agreed to this the creation was that internet explorer or whatever the web browser. was going to be called at that time was gonna, be a separate product. tell me something sold by Microsoft instead of bundled with windows and ended up, prompting Microsoft settle what spyglass, I think beat. The sum I see most frequently is eight million dollars which, is not a small amount of money, but when you compare it to some of the huge d
What's going on seemingly casually in the world of tech, and especially the world of the internet is a pittance hangman and the Microsoft as well yeah we, especially for Microsoft year, eight million dollars David's from what they have in between the cushions of their executive, lounge couch. You just sort through their line of spare eight or nine million dollars on shore I think if you convert into English, currency is approximately fifteen pounds, not entirely sure I'm not good with that sort of thing by Nazi, like the exchange rates old messed up at the moment. All I know is that whenever it is it London, I'm always looking for deals, because I realise that I dont know, I honestly don't know how much money I'm spending right now. export for comes out in ninety ninety seven that is marketed
the slogan the web. The way you want it which I guess is true. If you don't want it to be particularly good, It also handled rich text files and plain text, email in their internet mail and news programme, which was now outlook express for its called out. Express for, but really was the first outlook Express This is where we run into Microsoft, habit of numbering things in a way that probably makes sense to someone in Microsoft and no sense to any one else. I get on what it wise windows, ten windows, ten when it could have been windows. Nine, apart from the fact that calling it windows, nine could have caused some confusion with people who are run legacy systems, still rely on windows. Ninety five, I came in IRAN's in an era Jonathan my friend, where we have the Iphone five S and the Galaxy S five
I think we are in an era where we need to have windows. Ten- and I was ten yeah. Ok I'm fine with that. I guess I Obviously this boy we could just say are letters. A numbers make no difference. A world of the internet, so just just just go with it. we don't have html email, support and in outlook Express, for they just do reach textiles and playing extra email, so you didn't giving the incredibly fun stuff like people sending your pictures in the middle of their emails. Ah, and what, if you detecting some lack lustre enthusiasm in my voice. It's because those jokes only go so far with me. So please don't send me emails with with lots of pictures in them, but first of all, my my outlook immediately blocks them unless I tell it to allow the photos but you're, just wasting bandwidth.
I'm not a huge fan of those but but obviously makes it look better than it would if it were just a rich text file, and they integrate real player as streaming media player within internet explorer. For do. You remember those days Nate where, yes, I do. the beautiful days of real player inside internet explorer, yes, those those Wonderful days, I love those days I'll tell you were interesting, real player fact real player, used to be brilliant right, real. What real did was fantastic action. He made video stream promptly back in the day, while the player itself been clunky mass, the compression they used genuinely some of the most save online technology. In my opinion, the problem is that else about it was awful nuns bundle.
There's: a plugin also made a clunky experience, so it just a just always felt like a poor piece of technology, but actually what he did. was fantastic yeah. There was a time where I mean I just remember so this this held true Harvard way too long, where there were competing, plugins and in order to bring you to be able to watch video online, it meant that I had to have three or four plugins on your browser, because one site would you one format, another site would use and with some would be Flash based someone be, a real player base. You would have all these different competing formats and you didn't have a lot of options of light, in a one player fits all kind of solution, so it ended up, meaning that you had to add all these different plugins. If you wanted to be able to experience all this different media across different sites,
I dont miss those days at all. I mean a Microsoft really held onto it for a long time. Silver light was when those things that when I would encounter it online and I would say today, like all, you need to download several like to see this of her really, but we are we really still there yeah and can we get beyond that, and just have everyone say: okay, I wanted to be the person to, or they entity to define what the standard was. But at some point I have to admit I approach is not what has been considered standard and I'm gonna get on board with what everyone else is doing. it wasn't like that for a very long time fact, you could argue it's still not like that with certain types of media, but it just it it made it no fun really like you would go to a the. I have to add another button which again added that vulnerability. If you had to add in plugin after plugin. Eventually you got, you know, you got conditioned to the point,
We thought, oh, of course, I'm going to need another plugin to see whatever this thing is never mind the fact that it's a plugin that I don't recognize and that I've never you know heard of before I'll, go ahead and install it you make your system vulnerable if all those things that, within a necessity at the time- and I think really what what plugins did is- they just fuelled innovation like a lot of what is plugin. What was a plug it back in the day is now either Bates into the browser or is baked into html itself. You know when you think about HTML five supporting new video formats and like web, am the Google is behind. You got some the back in the day? You would need a you know up a plugin, for you don't need those anymore and it was problem the unnecessary lifecycle. That's true. I me. Without it then web page,
it would be very bland and limited and would not be nearly as important or influential as the web has become over the years. I mean you know. This is also we're. Looking at now we're looking at the late nineties when we're starting to get to a fever pitch of what the web could be, which, of course, culminated in and then collapsed with the dot com bubble, bursting, that whole Arab everyone was starting to see what the web could potentially be. But if we he relied simply upon what html could deliver back in those days. The web would have been a lot more. You know utilitarian and less interesting so. I definitely agree that the bloody where necessary part. It is also just as living through it. It just was also frustrating
I also support a dynamic html for the first time which allowed for more interactive web pages again that rich user experience we were talking about earlier? That was an important element and by bundling internet, explore with windows. Microsoft ends up leveraging itself into a sixty percent market share of all web browsers. This was a huge story. It really turn things around going from an underdog too the major player out of all browsers. So not just you know, Mozilla's or Netscape rather Netscape navigator. Now, if you add in all the different competitors, they paled, but it was, partly because the market share for pcs far outweighed other computer platforms, especially or businesses and casual users you obviously still outlawed Unix machines, brother,
Server software opinion in various research and and are indeed areas things like that. If you're talking about the average person they owned a pc. The MAC was not a competitor really at this time, and that meant that you are going to buy a pc and you had a web browser just bungled and with it sense to go ahead and use it. In fact, for people who were not really savvy with the web, that was there, he was either. A well was the web here in the: U S There was a low wage war on. Anyone to the air, while some of my first web sperience is worth. Where a well do the world garden. Yup happy happy times. Sometimes is the great when you have at times an entity that decides what is and is a web for you. That makes a mixed like so much easier.
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an anti trust suit, saying that the company had practised, predatory strategies to push other companies out of the web browser market and the operating system market, as it turns out saying that cause they had packaged internet explorer with the operating system, because the operating system was really the only game in town for the most part for operating systems, had the majority market share, if your by pc. More often than not, it was going to have windows pre loaded on it. they're essentially saying you- have stacked the deck against any competing company and you're pushing them out, and that's not fair. It's it's. Why we're bringing this antitrust suit against you This was big news and it wasn't the only place where Microsoft was having issues that it was also having problems in Europe. There are European Anti Trust, suits, brought against my thought there were actually looking at more interesting things in a way they were looking at how
oh, there were also allegations that the operating system have been designed so that it worked really well, will internet explorer and didn't work. So well with any other browser almost as if Microsoft had taken pains, to create an operating system that weighed on purpose, decrease the use and utility of competing web browsers, and that was a huge had flag. So you had these these mass of Anti trust lawsuits going up against Microsoft. That wouldn't be resolved for years mean we all know these lawsuits can last ages and in full it wouldn't pan out in the U S until two thousand wine, and there would be this enormous settlement and of originally the ruling tone the Microsoft other department, Justice said: hey you're gonna have to split your company and to companies
you gonna have to have one that is building the opera, the system business and one that's building the software that exists on top of the operating system. But I have the operators to separate entities, because if you pay It's them altogether. You have an unfair advantage over anyone who wants to build software for that operating system, ultimately, that did not happen, I mean, if you You are aware, a Microsoft is a single company as had been split, but that was originally what the ruling was and it was a huge. It was a huge new. Item in the day because anyone who wanted to use any other web browser was already NAD Microsoft for appeal, to make it more difficult to use those web browsers. Oh, I remember those days well too, because already at that point, not if you like, I said I had been using Netscape navigator as my early web browser for years and years,
partly because when I first started using the web, I was a college student, so I got Netscape navigator for Greek as it was a college application? Am I didn't have to purchase it? In fact I was pretty stingy about purchasing one for a long time is like. Why should I pay for this thing that I have had for free for so long and I didn't like the way internet explorer rendered web pages or the user interface or anything. So I was very upset at this time. When I heard about about this. I mean this with the eye internet explorer. This point was actually available on a MAC This was one of the last one such that was available in the MIKE. I e five, I think, was the very last what they made yeah, I assume that could actually you can actually use internet explorer on the Mcintosh at this time, to be fair, though the MAC was not not what it is today in those days this was a. This is that these are also the days where Steve Jobs had been forced out of apple for awhile and was just starting to come back to redefine what
was he had almost almost exactly the time he came back, and this is just before the eye MAC was released, yeah, if not almost, depending on the particular part of the history where whereon almost month. Why is at the moment? This is this is when that happened yeah. So we ve got this. This lawsuit going on hasn't in nineteen o eight starts and ninety ninety nine, I e was the the the. Permanent web browser, which was not helping Microsoft case. was it. I was essentially being pointed out a c if People are complaining about how this browser matches up against other browsers. How who argue that the customer, as faction or thy desire for this particular web browsers. What's driving the dominance in the market, its clearly because its tied so intricately with the operating system, I would be the kind of argument that the Department of Justice would level against microbes,
yeah, but it was, I mean there. This was I E. This point was just so key to Microsoft, yeah It had like a thousand people working on it Jihad, on the browser front from this People of I e one to the one thousand and a hundred million dollars being being invested every quarter. The two are actually every year. At this point into I internet explorer. This is the in the I e five days cause that came out in March nineteen. Ninety nine a couple of pretty versions come out. Ninety eight, but ninety nine was when they officially launched it This was the one that would come with windows. Ninety eight second edition as well as windows. Two thousand, dotcom boom. I mean this is a thousand people working on internet explorer. a hundred million dollars a year. This is this is the fact that these are the month just before the dot com bubble burst
It's also that this is one where, if you were user, you probably wouldn't have noticed a huge difference in the interface between four and five, but a lot of the stuff tat was going on behind the scenes right. The back end of the browser had been upgraded, which, prompted. A pauper ought to write that I e five point. Zero. Is I e four point o done right so, in other words, the the things that were innovative in internet explorer, but we're still kind of clunky were now much more smoothly in the new version so five, was seen as a big step up. and I was really important because we had this huge boom of innovation and dot com world which, we all know, was not sustainable long term anyway, but it was there is, there is no greater moment of focus media upon the internet, then at
This time, I would argue, even today, as instrumental and important as the internet is, as we have all these different ways of accessing it, including applications that And work with the web or separately from the web, things like twitter and Facebook. I would say that in this time than late nineties going. The two thousand. That was when we were at the peak of focus on the internet specifically on the world wide web, and guys it's funny, because if you look at the news reports from a couple of years before this, that was when you had like the the stuff that was caught on camera, but not originally broadcast where you had news anchors kind of talking about what is this web thing? What is that the West, that a symbol for What is a male like? It was them. There come button, exactly
It went from that to everyone now has to have a website. If you're a business, you had to have a website didn't matter if you had anything important to put on there, but you had to have a website, and that was That was the day and then you five was the perfect browser at the perfect time to really tap into that. Which is good. As I e six would be at almost one hundred and eighty degree turn from that, so so before that just one little sad bit of news on March Twenty sixth, two thousand, Spyglass, was bought out by open tv and spyglass became no more and about was, of course, the come. They had licence the mosaic technique. Oh gee from the sea essay and then for her licensed to Microsoft. It no longer existed desert entity of its own. At that point,. that was the story of internet explorer part one. We will contain
you the story next week in the next classic episode. If you have suggestions for topics I should cover in future, episodes of stuff. Please reach out on twitter, then over the show is tat, stuff, H S w I'll talk to you again, policing text up is an Iheart radio production or more pod tasks. From my heart radio visit the Iheart radio up Apple podcast, wherever you listen to your favorite jobs This episode is brought to you by square. What, if your business could say anywhere at any time and open to more customers. All by making one simple choice: Square has
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welcome to Heidi World the hiding place story, a new podcast coming, I hard radio put it this way the poorest Heidi that people talk about in the history of time. No one dared what she did and one year no one, in the ninety nine these allay girl, Heidi Face, became one of the most famous people in the world for tat I also intend to expose alleys deepest secrets: listen the Heidi world on the eye, heart, radio, ad hoc cassis or wherever you get your podcast millions of people have
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Transcript generated on 2022-05-02.