Windows Internet Explorer (formerly Microsoft Internet Explorer abbreviated MSIE), commonly abbreviated to IE, is a series of graphical web browsers developed by Microsoft and included as part of the Microsoft Windows line of operating systems starting in 1995. It has been the most widely used web browser since 1999. The project was started by Thomas Reardom and subsequently led by Benjamin Slivka. “It has been designed to view the broadest range of web pages and to provide certain features within the operating system, including Microsoft Update. During the heyday of the historic browser wars, Internet Explorer superseded Netscape by supporting many of the progressive features of the time” The adoption rate of Internet Explorer seems to be closely related to that of Microsoft Windows, as it is the default web browser that comes with Windows. Since the integration of Internet Explorer 2.0 with Windows 95 OSR 1 in 1996, and especially after version 4.0’s release, the adoption was greatly accelerated: from below 20% in 1996 to about 40% in 1998 and over 80% in 2000.
Mozilla Firefox is a web browser, gopher client and FTP client project descended from the Mozilla Application Suite, managed by the Mozilla Corporation. Firefox had 16.80% of the recorded market share in Web browsers as of December 2007, making it the second-most-popular browser in current use worldwide after Internet Explorer. It uses the open-source Gecko layout engine, which implements some current Web standards plus a few features which are intended to anticipate likely additions to the standards.Firefox includes tabbed browsing, a spell checker, incremental find, live bookmarking, a download manager, and a search system that uses Google. Functions can be added through more than 2,000 add-ons created by third party developers. It runs on various versions of Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, and many other Unix-like operating systems. Its current stable release is version 220.127.116.11, released on February 7, 2008. Firefox’s source code is under the terms of the Mozilla tri-license as free and open source software.
Safari is a web browser developed by Apple Inc. and included in Mac OS X. It was first released as a public beta on January 7, 2003, and is the default browser in Mac OS X v10.3 and later. A beta version for Microsoft Windows was released for the first time on June 11, 2007 with support for Windows XP and Windows Vista, although it was also functional, albeit unofficially, on Windows 2000. Safari has also been run unofficially on Linux under Wine, but the graphical user interface (GUI) and web graphics do not render properly. It has a bookmark management scheme that functions like the iTunes jukebox software, integrates Apple’s QuickTime multimedia technology, and features a tabbed-browsing interface. A web search box is a standard component of the Safari interface, as are software services that automatically fill out web forms, manage passwords via Keychain and spell check entries into web page text fields. The browser also includes an integrated pop-up ad blocker. Also from Apple is the Web Inspector — a DOM Inspector-like utility that lets users and developers browse the Document Object Model of a web page.
Opera is a web browser and Internet suite developed by the Opera Software company. Opera handles common Internet-related tasks such as displaying web sites, sending and receiving e-mail messages, managing contacts, IRC online chatting, downloading files via BitTorrent, and reading web feeds. Opera is offered free of charge for personal computers and mobile phones, but for other devices it must be paid for. Features of Opera include high performance, tabbed browsing, page zooming, mouse gestures, and an integrated download manager. Its security features include built-in phishing protection, strong encryption when browsing secure web sites, and the ability to delete private data such as cookies and browsing history by clicking a button. It is currently the fourth most widely used web browser for personal computers. Opera has a stronger market share, however, on mobile devices such as mobile phones, smartphones, and personal digital assistants.
- Internet Explorer, Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_Explorer
- Features of Internet Explorer, Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Features_of_Internet_Explorer
- Mozilla Firefox, Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mozilla_Firefox
- Safari, Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Safari_%28web_browser%29
- Opera, Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opera_%28web_browser%29