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— a blog about web development and whatnot by Steve Webster

It seems that Microsoft are just as sick of users sticking with IE6 as web developers are, if their latest ie6countdown.com venture is anything to go by. You'd think that web developers – at least the ones who haven't already abandoned support for IE6 – would get behind this movement in their droves, and they may… but at what cost?

You see, Microsoft is asking developers to join in their crusade by adding a standard banner to their site wrapped in conditional comments so that it only shows for users of IE6 and below. The banner looks like this:

Yes, the banner is fugly - and inaccessible, thanks to the missing alt text – but that's not as much of a problem as where the banner links to: the IE homepage on microsoft.com. Given that everyone using IE6 is, at best, running Windows XP, and given that Microsoft have stated that IE9 won't be available for pre-Vista SP2 OSs, the most recent version of Internet Explorer they could ever hope to upgrade to is IE8.

Yes, that's right; a 2-year old browser on the verge of obsolescence, with zero support for HTML5, destined to become the new ball and chain that keeps web development firmly rooted in the past. No thank you!

If you're considering running this banner on your site, please (pretty please) link to Firefox or Chrome or Opera. And while you're at it, find a designer friend to create a banner that wont make your users want to poke their eyes out with a stick.