Sunday, April 21, 2013

jQuery facepunches old IE versions

The jQuery team announced that they dropped support for Internet Explorer 6, 7 and 8 on the v2.0.0 of the library. That’s one huge and important move. First, because jQuery is widely used worldwide, and even endorsed by some big companies like Microsoft and Google. Second, because these versions of Internet Explorer still have a considerable percentage of the market share as of today. The jQuery guys announced that v1.9.x will still support these old IE versions, but who knows for how long.

This made me think the primary reason that jQuery was conceived for: a thin layer of cross-browser compatibility. If the library is not so widely compatible anymore, isn’t it losing its main reason to exist? Or maybe it’s heading towards becoming a framework like many others, just providing some useful and funny tricks.

I’m not against this decision, but given the wide adoption of jQuery in the wild, maybe it’s too early to force the migration to the latest IE version. Although when I think of the real pain that is to develop to those terrible browsers, I just raise my hands and scream hallelujah, they finally did it!