IE 8 defaults to be “standards mode”
March 4, 2008 by Luba Sirakova Source article

Microsoft announced that IE8 will, by default, interpret web content in the most standards compliant way it can.

"We think that acting in accordance with principles is important, and IE8’s default is a demonstration of the interoperability principles in action," said Dean Hachamovitch, IE General Manager.

Microsoft recently published a set of Interoperability Principles, aimed at increasing the openness of its products and drive greater interoperability, opportunity and choice. Following these principles the company decided to have three rendering modes in IE8: the new standards-compliant mode, the IE7 rendering engine, as well as an option for displaying older Web sites. Because of the default shift, Web sites that want IE8 to use its IE7 engine will have to add a tag to their site's code. 
"Each version of each browser has its own Standards mode, because each version of each browser improves on its web standards support. There’s Safari 3’s Standards mode, Firefox 2’s Standards mode, IE6’s Standards mode, and IE7’s Standards mode, and they’re all different. We want to make IE8’s Standards mode much, much better than IE7’s Standards mode," said Hachamovitch.
The final version of IE8 is not scheduled yet, but a beta version of the browser is due out in the first half of the year.

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