So, what to do next? Should I start tearing my hair out trying to figure out some new clever way of tricking Internet Explorer?
After some deliberation, I’ve decided that the answer is a resounding "no".
The Eolas patent that sparked the browser revision is completely without merit. Why should I have to change my perfectly valid XHTML documents just because the US Patent Office is too idiotic to recognise prior art?
It might not come to that, though. Tim Berners-Lee has jumped into the fray with an impassioned plea for sanity as well as putting forward to the indisputable case for the existence of prior art. The US Patent Office are actually responding so there may well be a happy ending to all this.
One positive thing has come out of this debacle already. The beta release of the crippled Internet Explorer led an enterprising web developer into figuring out how to install multiple versions of IE on Windows, something previously thought to be impossible.
This doesn’t affect me directly as I use Virtual PC on the Mac to achieve the same result but it’s certainly great, great news for Windows-based web developers. They can now check their designs across a wide range of browsers without resorting to a separate partition, or even a separate computer, for each version of IE.