modern.IE is a dev center – free tools & resources – built so you can spend less time testing for the various versions of Internet Explorer and more time building what matters to you on the modern web.
We recognize that there are still a lot of users that browse with older versions of Internet Explorer. And while modern web standards and automatic updates with platform previews might be steps in the right direction, we know that the range of devices and browser versions still present a real challenge for your testing matrix. modern.IE is a way we can help move the web forward by making it easier to build innovative experiences with web standards like HTML5 & CSS3 while supporting older versions of IE.
modern.IE is an evolving project in BETA, built by a small group of passionate engineers and technical evangelists in Microsoft. We’ve spent a lot of time listening a lot to what you had to say about how you build for the web and specifically for Internet Explorer – in tweets, at conferences, on blogs.
Share your thoughts on how we can improve modern.IE for you.
About the code detection wizard
The idea of scanning for code is not a new thing on the web. What makes modern.IE different is that it specifically addresses common coding problems that may result from supporting older versions of IE. Since modern versions of Internet Explorer 9 and 10 support HTML5 web standards and older versions of IE do not, writing code for both can be harder than it should be. So modern.IE scans your code (a static web crawl – without executing the code itself) and reports the webpage results in three categories:
Address common problems that result from supporting older versions of IE.
Since modern versions of IE9 and 10 support HTML5 web standards and older versions of IE do not, developers typically need to write code for both. This can make it harder to test for the various versions of IE – like finding unsupported features that render a site in Compatibility Mode, a docmode that tells the browser to recognize web standards, an older version of a web framework like jQuery. When there are compatibility issues that might prevent a site from rendering in the latest version or pre-release of IE, modern.IE informs you so it’s easier to plan for and address differences from version to version. For security and privacy reasons, we don’t disclose these technical details on the site. Instead, you can easily contact us, receive this info, and get engineering team support at no cost.
Help the site work well across browsers, across devices.
This includes a set of emerging best practices on the web that apply to the growing range of form-factors – mobile, desktop, tablets, even large-screen TVs. Implementing feature detection, coding with CSS prefix best practices, building plug-in free, and using responsive web design can each save testing time across new browsers and devices, and provide a more consistent user experience in each of them.
Consider building with some new features in Windows 8.
This includes suggestions for touch-enabled browsing and Start Screen site tile. These are ways you can take advantage of Windows to deliver a more personalized browsing experience for their users.
We plan to continually improve the code detection wizard with support from the developer community and you. Among our ideas:
More focus on the specific code practices needed for mobile, tablet, and large-screen form-factors
More advanced detection of responsive web design including experiences that have been built for specific devices (like t.msn.com)
Suggestions on how to optimize your site for performance and take advantage of hardware acceleration
Secure log-in like the Bing Webmaster tools so you can get your known issues with how your site renders in IE without contacting Microsoft first
Enhanced web crawler that can execute code in multiple OS/browser combinations for better detection accuracy
About the BrowserStack offer
modern.IE includes special – free - access to BrowserStack, a leading virtual browser testing site that lets developers test their site on any browser available on Windows – regardless of what test machine is running. This offer is available for three months of free service to be activated before 31-Jan 2014.
Services like BrowserStack mean you won’t need to worry about maintaining your own test machines and that the browsers on the service are maintained in the cloud. modern.IE also includes add-ins for Chrome or Firefox, which give you single click access to the BrowserStack virtual testing service right from your browser of choice.
If you prefer local virtual images, these are available on modern.IE to download and run local versions of Internet Explorer with Windows for testing – even on Mac, Linux, or PC.
About the 20 best practices for coding
We have compiled the top twenty tech tips that, when followed, will address most of the compatibility issues you have coding for the web - and IE – today. While this list of tech tips doesn’t include every insight shared by the developer community, it represents some of the most common patterns and practices to make coding for the web easier. The list has also been moderated by two coding experts we trust to help: Dave Methvin, President of the jQuery foundation, and Rey Bango, our own Technical Evangelist and former member of the jQuery Project.