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Microsoft Launches Internet Explorer 9 Beta

Although, Microsoft officials have not yet shared the release date of the final version of IE 9, the first publicly available beta version is already here, generating a lot of buzz. IE 9 promises many improvements over its predecessors including extensive HTML 5 support, simplified interface and much better download manager but certainly one of the most talked about features is speed. IE 9 utilizes hardware acceleration to render content faster than ever. IE 9 will no doubt grow in popularity next year and web developers should be looking into its new feature list. Here is a quick rundown:

  • Enhanced CSS3 support
    • Rounded corners via the border-radius property
    • CSS3 background and border features
    • The opacity property
    • RGBA, HSL, and HSLA color models
    • CSS3 fonts properties and new web font formats
    • CSS3 media queries
    • CSS3 namespaces
    • CSS3 values and units
    • CSS3 selectors
  • Improved DataURI support
  • Document Object Model (DOM) Improvements
    • Enhanced DOM capabilities
    • Parsing and serializing XML to and from the DOM
    • New DOM Level 2 (L2) and Level 3 (L3) support and updated behaviors
      • DOM Core (L2, L3) and Views (L2)
      • DOM Element Traversal
      • DOM Events (L2, L3)
      • DOM L2 HTML
      • DOM L2 Style
      • DOM L2 Traversal and Range
    • New whitespace handling behavior
  • ECMAScript feature enhancements
  • Added HTML5 support
    • The video and audio elements
    • The canvas element
    • The Selection interface
    • Improved parsing of HTML elements
    • Text selection APIs
  • ICC v2 and v3 color profile support on images
  • New Selectors API Level 2 support for the msMatchesSelector method
  • SVG features
    • Basic shapes: rectangles, circles, ellipses, lines, polylines, and polygons
    • Clipping, masking, and compositing
    • Coordinate systems, transforms, and units
    • Document structure, metadata, and extensibility functionality
    • Gradients and patterns
    • Interactivity
    • Linking and views
    • Painting and color
    • Paths, including full capabilities of the path element and d attribute
    • Text
  • Additional platform versioning capabilities
    • Pinned sites
    • New document mode
    • New user-agent (UA) string
  • Developer Tools additions
    • Performance improvements
    • Console tab
    • Network tab
    • UA switcher tool
    • Real-world performance measurement

If you are interested in learning more about IE 9 or wish to give it a try go visit IE 9 test drive site at http://ie.microsoft.com/testdrive/

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