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Devs get access to Internet Explorer 10 Preview 2

Developers will be busy this weekend as Microsoft have released the second preview of Internet Explorer 10. The IE10 preview launches help support developers to get access to the new features and behind the scenes interface for software development.

Dean Hachamovitch from Microsoft said that developers will be able to start working with several HTML 5 technologies to create ‘beautiful, interactive web applications with great performance and security’. The latest preview build of IE10 uses the same HTML 5 engine which has been seen in Windows 8 demo videos. Microsoft are gearing up to fully accept the new HTML 5 standard and want to get their developer base aware of the new updates as soon as possible.

There are also new parsing improvements from the W3C HTML 5 specifications meaning that developers can experience the same behaviour in all compliant browsers, even when presented with invalid or poorly executed markup.

One of the big talking points with the latest preview releases is the support for ‘web workers’, a new technology that allow web applications to run complex JavaScripts in the background. This means that Microsoft are trying to get away from the traditional single threaded browser platform, allowing scripts to be run in multiple UI threads simultaneously. So far developers have had to use the Document Object Model events and setTimeout API to give the appearance of running several tasks at the same time.

IE10 also has improved support for Drag n Drop functionality, positioning of page elements and form validation. The new drag n drop system, when a user drags a draggable item, a ghost image of the item will move with the cursor as it is dragged. One or more files can also be dragged from the desktop to a webpage.

IE10 has added support for CSS3 positioned floats to enable text flows around figures on a page, normally similar functionality has been reserved for DTP programs such as QuarkXpress in the past. This has been enhanced since Preview 1 which already had CSS3 grid, flexbox and multi column. IE10 also increases previous limitations of style sheets, giving unlimited times that a coder can nest import rules inside style sheets. IE9 was limited to 31 style sheets per webpage.

One of the most important new features is Sandbox functionality, which offers HTML5 Sandbox and iframe isolation, enhancing the browser security. This can enable security restrictions for iframe elements which contain untrusted content, protecting a user against malicious behaviour. Sandboxed content can not open pop up windows or new browser windows for instance. Links cannot be opened in new windows and plugins are limited to user interaction in specific instances. These features can be customised now.

Kitguru says: Microsoft have already said they will support IE10 for 10 years after its release.

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