For years, Microsoft’s abuse of their desktop web browser monopoly has caused no end of headaches for web designers/developers worldwide. Refusal to make MS Internet Explorer adhere to standards and deliberately introducing incompatibilities meant that anyone making a website faced a choice: Do it properly, or do it so that Internet Explorer can still display it.
The FSFE has joined the European Commission’s investigation on Microsoft’s browser abuse. They hope to create a similar situation as in the CIFS/SMB server market, where the Samba team and Microsoft engineers are finally allowed to exchange thoughts again, and where interoperability becomes possible. Previously, management had made it impossible for them to talk to each other and it took the European Commission to order Microsoft to play nice again.
It is possible for browser makers to adhere to the standards, which creates healthy competition. Look at Mozilla, Apple and Opera. Of course Microsoft wouldn’t want any of that, but after this investigation I hope it might be forced upon them.