5 Things We Learned From the Team Behind Microsoft Internet Explorer

Microsoft team participates in Reddit "Ask Me Anything."

August 15, 2014, 11:12 AM
PHOTO: The Internet Explorer Developer Relations team posted this photo to twitter as proof of the engineering department's Reddit "Ask Me Anything" on Aug. 14, 2014.
The Internet Explorer Developer Relations team posted this photo to twitter as proof of the engineering department's Reddit "Ask Me Anything" on Aug. 14, 2014.

— -- Microsoft's Internet Explorer has long been the browser that people love to hate.

The team behind the browser participated in a Reddit "Ask Me Anything" where they were both hilarious and candid about their desire to change the perception of Internet Explorer.

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Here are five revelations from the online chat:

They Considered Re-Branding

With sleeker competitors, including Google's Chrome and Mozilla's Firefox, the team revealed it had been discussed internally whether Internet Explorer should be re-branded.

"I remember a particularly long email thread where numerous people were passionately debating it. Plenty of ideas get kicked around about how we can separate ourselves from negative perceptions that no longer reflect our product today," Jonathan Sampson, an engineer, wrote.

In 2012, Microsoft released advertising showing a guy complaining about Internet Explorer but coming to the conclusion that "IE sucks ... less."

Let Them Eat Cake

They're not opposed to a little friendly competition. The Internet Explorer team and Mozilla have sent cakes to one another to celebrate various achievements.

The last cake that the Internet Explorer team received was to celebrate the shipping of IE 10.

"We started this tradition when we sent them a cake for Firefox 2. It was probably the best damn cake I've eaten," Jacob Rossi, an engineer, said of the marble chocolate vanilla confection.

They Can Bust a Move

Well, at least one member of their team can.

Rey Bango recently rejoined Microsoft, and a user asked what it was about the developer that attracted the team. Was it perhaps this video of him dancing?

"Clearly, Rey's stellar dance moves served as huge motivator for us," the Internet Explorer team wrote. "Thankfully, he's able to complement them with a good understanding of IE and web development but the primary impetus was to build up our IE dance crew to compete on So You Think You Can Dance."

A follow-up comment added:

"In case you were wondering, that was Rey answering that question. The rest of us would prefer not to see him dance."

What They Want People to Know

They just want you to give Internet Explorer another chance.

"I don't think it's a matter of selling you on IE as much as ensuring that you're familiar with the changes that have come to the browser," Bango wrote. "Many developers still view IE as old IE but when they take the time to actually use it, leverage the features and see the improvements, in many cases they change their perception of the browser."

They Just Want to Be Loved

Don't we all?

The team behind Internet Explorer just want their product to be loved -- and they believe they'll get there one day.

"It's okay to love us -- the IE we work on is probably not the IE you remember," Sampson said.

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