AFP, posted on Friday, June 17, 2022 at 10:36
Internet Explorer may have made his day to day difficult, but a South Korean computer engineer has nevertheless decided to build a tombstone, whose photos have already gone viral, in memory of the emblematic web browser of the American giant Microsoft.
Unlike many other countries, South Korea, which has one of the world’s fastest Internet networks on average, has remained strangely tied to Internet Explorer, which Microsoft officially said goodbye to on Wednesday after 27 years of service.
In honor of the navigator’s “death”, 38-year-old engineer Kiyoung Jung has installed a tombstone on the roof of a cafe in the southern city of Gyeongju, South Korea.
On the trail of dark color appears the famous letter “e”, which has long been enthroned on the screen of hundreds of millions of computers, accompanied by an epitaph: “It was a good tool for downloading other browsers.”
On the Internet, images of this monument quickly spread virally, and users of the Reddit social network, for example, approved them tens of thousands of times.
– Compatibility issues –
Upon its release in August 1995, Explorer had rapidly supplanted the first great browser in Internet history, Netscape, to the point of commanding more than 90% of the industry in the early 2000s. But the browser had also come to exasperate to many users, who blamed it for their slowness and recurring problems.
Except that in South Korea it had been made mandatory for online banking and shopping until around 2014, because all of these online activities required sites to use ActiveX, an extension created by Microsoft.
And until recently, it was still the default browser for many Korean government sites, according to local press.
As a software engineer and web developer, Kiyoung Jung constantly “suffered” at work from compatibility issues with Internet Explorer, he told AFP.
“In South Korea, he explains, when you work in web development, you always expect it to work well with Internet Explorer, rather than Chrome,” the browser owned by US giant Google that now commands three-quarters of the global browser market. according to the specialized site Kinsta.
However, sites that work properly in other browsers, such as Safari or Chrome, could have many problems in Explorer, continues Mr. Jung, who was then forced to put in many hours of additional work to ensure the compatibility of the sites in question. .
– Nostalgia and emotion –
Microsoft had announced in 2021 the end of Explorer, which will have known eleven successive versions, then gave the date of June 15, 2022 in the middle of last year.
In practice, it will still be possible to use Explorer, but Microsoft will no longer make any updates or changes to the browser, released in August 1995.
On the one hand, Mr. Jung says he is “delighted” at the announced end of Microsoft’s browser. But on the other hand, he also claims to feel nostalgia and emotion at the idea of Explorer’s disappearance, of which he lived the heyday.
Hence his idea to build a tombstone for the deceased navigator.
“People are often relieved that machines don’t have souls, but we as human beings give them our hearts,” the engineer told AFP, quoting Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki.
Mr. Jung says he is happy today with the enthusiasm his fake tombstone arouses and specifies that he and his brother, who owns the cafe, plan to leave it on the roof of the building indefinitely.
“It was very exciting to make other people laugh,” he explains.