Dear Microsoft,

Last week I was having a “I fucking hate Microsoft” day. To be precise, that was the day I learned of your Ten grand is burried here website. Calling competing browsers “old,” “tarnished,” “boring” or just “that browser,” and then telling their users to get rid of it, or get lost. I thought that was pretty demented coming from a company that did nothing but hold back the web with Internet Explorer 6.

And while IE8 is a pretty solid browser, it isn’t doing any groundbreaking work. You might think it does, after looking at your myth busting and browser comparison pages, but I actually wonder if whoever wrote that has actually ever used any browser other that IE for more than 5 minutes. In popular webspeak: fail.

To put it this way: if it wasn’t for IE’s position, IE8 would be totally irrelevant. It does nothing other browsers can’t do, and 99% of the time, those other browsers do it better.

That same day, I spent quite some time damning Outlook 2007 straight to some very unpleasant place. Two and a half years ago, when you announced your plan to set back email design 5 years by switching to Word for HTML rendering in Outlook, I wasn’t happy. To put it mildly. Even when compared to IE6, Word’s treatment of HTML is completely inadequate. It meant going back to tables and inline styles for email newsletters. Wooptifreakingdoo.

Fast forward to today, when I learned that Outlook 2010 will use Word to render HTML, just like Outlook 2007 does. Even when you have IE8’s vastly superior rendering engine at your disposal, you insist on using Word, which produces the most awful HTML ever. Even Frontpage wasn’t that bad.

So you say you want to offer Outlook users a way to write professional looking and visually stunning messages. Well, that’s quite possible with web standards. Rip out Word’s HTML rendering engine, and put in something that knows how to handle HTML and CSS in a modern, web standards-compliant way.

Stop holding back the internet, already. Get relevant, or crawl into some corner and die.