Speedier IE 9 Platform Preview 7 Released by Microsoft
Microsoft today released the seventh "platform preview" of Internet Explorer 9.
This release is mainly targeted toward Web developers, allowing them to contribute feedback about Microsoft's latest IE 9 engineering efforts. The platform preview lets users compare browser performances based on Microsoft's tests, but it's not a complete browser. Microsoft already released a fully functional IE 9 version when it released the beta back in September.
There are three new tests included with platform preview 7, all of which test for speed. The Galactic test shows the performance of a three-dimensional planetary map. The Sudoku test demonstrates how quickly puzzles get solved. A tag cloud test shows how fast a matrix of word can be formed from a Shakespeare play.
An article published by Digitizor contends that Microsoft may have "cheated" on its latest SunSpider benchmark results. The article cites Mozilla engineer Rob Sayre, who got losing results for IE 9 on the SunSpider benchmark tests after slightly tweaking the code, according to the article.
The platform preview releases represent a new approach by Microsoft in getting feedback. While they were originally expected to be released every eight weeks, version 7 arrived after about two-and-a-half weeks after the release of platform preview 6. Hachamovich commented in Microsoft's blog that the platform previews will arrive each time Microsoft's team feels that "meaningful progress" is represented by the build.
Platform preview 7 of IE 9 can be downloaded here (16.2 MB download). The platform preview is designed to run alongside other Internet Explorer versions without conflict.
Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.