Microsoft teaming up with the Gorillaz to launch Internet Explorer 9

Microsoft is teaming up with the virtual animated band, Gorillaz, for the launch of Internet Explorer 9 beta.

In an invite sent to the media, Microsoft hinted at the collaboration with the Gorillaz. "Join us for the unveiling and celebration of Internet Explorer 9 beta where one of the world's most innovative animated bands will be showcasing Internet Explorer 9." The background image used for the invite is identical to the Gorillaz's latest album cover, Plastic Beach. The event is due to be held in London next Wednesday at the same time Microsoft holds a press meeting in San Francisco to unveil Internet Explorer 9 beta to the world.

It's not yet clear whether the Gorillaz will be performing live at the event or if they have prepared a specially crafted cartoon for Microsoft. The band have struggled to hold live performances in the past. According to band member Murdoc Niccals, the group have gone through a number of different incarnations on the live stage. "At one point we appeared as holograms, but that didn’t really work," he told The Irish Examiner last month.

An early screenshot of the Internet Explorer 9 UI leaked out last month when Microsoft's Russian PR team accidently published it on a blog. Microsoft originally unveiled Internet Explorer 9 at PDC 2009. IE 9 will take advantage of the power of the GPU for all page rendering and developers can exploit this using CSS, DHTML and javascript. A new JS engine (codenamed Chakra) will also be built into Internet Explorer 9 with greater interoperability and standards support all round. Features such as rounded corner CSS support will be built in. In January, Neowin revealed that Microsoft is planning to enhance tabbed browsing in IE9. According to a software patent, the Quick Tabs feature in Internet Explorer is likely to be enhanced with better functionality and greater tab management options.

Microsoft is also planning broader support for HTML5 in Internet Explorer 9 through its new script engine. Microsoft recently performed W3C Web Standards tests on IE9, including HTML5, SVG 1.1 2nd edition, CSS3 media queries, CSS3 borders & backgrounds, CSS3 selectors, DOM level 3 core, DOM level 3 events and DOM level 2 style. Microsoft, with the help of W3C, performed a total of 2,138 tests on a variety of browsers. Internet Explorer 9 scored above 90% in average across all tests, while every other browser, except Safari 5 and Chrome 5 didn't come close to scoring 90% or above in any of the test categories.

Microsoft will hold the Gorillaz themed event on Wednesday at 18:30 GMT in London, UK.

UPDATE: Quotes from Gorillaz band member Murdoc Niccals have also appeared in online IE9 adverts, see below.

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Cannot wait until IE9 Landed. 2 more days..... IE9 is the true hardware accelerated browser unlike other browsers that only have partial hardware acceleration

GP007 said,
Lol, are you serious? Man some people have strong hate it seems.
It's just the fact they are promoting Internet Explorer that makes me sad.

I love Gorillaz but i tested ie9 and it is still Internet Explorer. May be it will looks modern but it feel rusty.

Magallanes said,
I love Gorillaz but i tested ie9 and it is still Internet Explorer. May be it will looks modern but it feel rusty.

Strange reply when its looking like the best browser out there.

Magallanes said,
I love Gorillaz but i tested ie9 and it is still Internet Explorer. May be it will looks modern but it feel rusty.

Did you test the same thing I tested? It sounds like you didn't.

GP007 said,

Did you test the same thing I tested? It sounds like you didn't.

Address bar integration, history integration, bookmark (favorites) integration, remember states per page, remember password and so on.

I hope that IE9 download manager will have independent taskbar icon. Because curently if i download something i cannot open new IE window, only un/minimize IE downloads. A that is IMO very annoying..

6205 said,
I hope that IE9 download manager will have independent taskbar icon. Because curently if i download something i cannot open new IE window, only un/minimize IE downloads. A that is IMO very annoying..

+1 plus, when will they make it a proper download manager with pause resume functions, etc.?

6205 said,
I hope that IE9 download manager will have independent taskbar icon. Because curently if i download something i cannot open new IE window, only un/minimize IE downloads. A that is IMO very annoying..

Shift-click ? Middle-mouse click (my personal favorite) ? Come on -- try some new buttons

I hope it's much better than the leaked screenshot we saw. I am expecting something really unique from Microsoft. Windows 7, Office 2010, Windows Phone 7, Bing...and now IE9. This better be good!
I like that everything is in one bar but I really hope they don't waste that space above and below the bar.

FMH said,
I hope it's much better than the leaked screenshot we saw. I am expecting something really unique from Microsoft. Windows 7, Office 2010, Windows Phone 7, Bing...and now IE9. This better be good!
I like that everything is in one bar but I really hope they don't waste that space above and below the bar.

Though I think it'll be close, as far as overall placement of objects, to the leak screenshot I also think it'll be different and fit better than that shot we got which was of a pretty old (probably alpha) UI build at the time.

I think they're going to make the jump, instead of just following Opera, Chrome and FF with merging the address bar and tabs together instead of just doing TOT or TOB like the others. If it's done like I think then it should be something great in the end. We'll know for sure in 3 days, gah too long!

KSib said,
I wonder if this will have some equivalent of NoScript? Hm..

No, of course it wont. That kind of thing belongs in a plug-in/addon.

I guess you guys have never heard of IE7PRO? It has been around since IE7 and include adblock and noscript functions forever. Although I never bother to use anything else because abp, greasemonkey, and stylish on ff is top notch.

vice le von said,
I guess you guys have never heard of IE7PRO? It has been around since IE7 and include adblock and noscript functions forever. Although I never bother to use anything else because abp, greasemonkey, and stylish on ff is top notch.

IE7Pro is dead as a doornail, though, and it doesn't work properly with IE8.

Is the grammar correct? Microsoft invite you? shouldn't that be inviteS? would ms do a major fault like that?

GeeQ said,
Is the grammar correct? Microsoft invite you? shouldn't that be inviteS? would ms do a major fault like that?

Microsoft is treating itself as a collection rather then a single entity so as they intended it it was correct, but it can be read ambiguously.

GeeQ said,
Is the grammar correct? Microsoft invite you? shouldn't that be inviteS? would ms do a major fault like that?

I may be totally off here (since I really have no formal knowledge on the subject), but it's my understanding that in the UK (where the event is taking place) it is common to treat a company name as a plural noun, where here in the US we typically treat them as singular nouns. So, yes, in the UK it's correct.

JonathanMarston said,

I may be totally off here (since I really have no formal knowledge on the subject), but it's my understanding that in the UK (where the event is taking place) it is common to treat a company name as a plural noun, where here in the US we typically treat them as singular nouns. So, yes, in the UK it's correct.

This sounds pretty much spot on to me, MS isn't one thing, it's a collection of different parts under one name. It really works either way if you think about it, you can think of them as one big thing or many things that share one name.

GeeQ said,
Is the grammar correct? Microsoft invite you? shouldn't that be inviteS? would ms do a major fault like that?

A company is singular. This is in every grammar book.

It's the same reason people call a company "they", but correct grammar would be "it".

day2die said,

A company is singular. This is in every grammar book.

It's the same reason people call a company "they", but correct grammar would be "it".

Grammatically speaking both ways are correct. It is my opinion that using it sounds better, as the noun is singular, but what we are talking about here is called "ad sensum" agreement, that is, instead of matching the word with its purely grammatic form, people match it with its signification.

it's a shame that events like this are kept as media only, if it was available to the public and held in a large venue perhaps with live streaming online it could create a great addition to the buzz around the launch

Awesome! I'm heading there to dance my ass off to the sounds of Gorillaz, and dance my way home with my vodka on the rocks and IE 9! Or maybe not, haha.

FlintyV said,
Ah Microsoft. Just release a decent browser. I don't think there is really any need for all this.

Other browsers don't need this kind of fan fare because of res ipsa loquitur, IE on the other hand needs gimmicks like this to try and convince people to use it.

LoveThePenguin said,
Other browsers don't need this kind of fan fare

I remember Mozilla doing stuff like this for some of their releases. But of course, if MS does it it's a baaaad sign.

LoveThePenguin said,

Other browsers don't need this kind of fan fare because of res ipsa loquitur, IE on the other hand needs gimmicks like this to try and convince people to use it.

Uh, remember when we had Chrome ads plastered everywhere.

LoveThePenguin said,

Other browsers don't need this kind of fan fare because of res ipsa loquitur, IE on the other hand needs gimmicks like this to try and convince people to use it.

I use IE because it works and doesn't have memory leaks. In fact, the only people I know that use Firefox only use it because of Adblock. AFAIC using Javascript for extensibility is just asking for trouble.

One thing that strikes me here:

Chrome and Firefox are working on Windows XP, IE9 wont?

Are MS mad? People are not going to upgrade to 7 for Internet Explorer, it will only cause the huge amount of XP users that are also long term IE 6,7 and 8 users to move to Chrome or Firefox to get web pages working properly in the future.

Why would MS do this to themselves?

Orange Battery said,
One thing that strikes me here:

Chrome and Firefox are working on Windows XP, IE9 wont?

Are MS mad? People are not going to upgrade to 7 for Internet Explorer, it will only cause the huge amount of XP users that are also long term IE 6,7 and 8 users to move to Chrome or Firefox to get web pages working properly in the future.

Why would MS do this to themselves?


Actually NO. People running Windows XP are still rocking Internet Explorer 6. What motive would Internet Explorer 9 give them to upgrade even if it is available to them.

day2die said,

Actually NO. People running Windows XP are still rocking Internet Explorer 6. What motive would Internet Explorer 9 give them to upgrade even if it is available to them.

A lot of popular sites will begin moving away from IE6 and advising users they need to upgrade, at that time all the XP users will have is Chrome and Firefox as the IE9 link wont work.

Orange Battery said,

A lot of popular sites will begin moving away from IE6 and advising users they need to upgrade, at that time all the XP users will have is Chrome and Firefox as the IE9 link wont work.


If they're sticking to XP they aren't going to care about not being able to use Facebook or Youtube. It's mostly businesses who won't switch at this point, because of web-driven databases that only work on IE6 right now.

Orange Battery said,

A lot of popular sites will begin moving away from IE6 and advising users they need to upgrade, at that time all the XP users will have is Chrome and Firefox as the IE9 link wont work.


A great move. IE6 and XP need to die.

TCLN Ryster said,

A great move. IE6 and XP need to die.

lol But what Im saying is they wont die. If Facebook or Youtube stops working for the average XP users (that only needs their PC for that type of thing) then they are going to download whatever the website tells them they need. So they will begin using Chrome or FF.

Orange Battery said,
Chrome and Firefox are working on Windows XP, IE9 wont?

IE9 will not work at all on XP, because it does not support DirectWrite and Direct2D (required for the hardware accelerated rendering of webpages).

If this enables Microsoft to create a much better and/or faster browser, that is definitely a good thing.

Orange Battery said,
One thing that strikes me here:

Chrome and Firefox are working on Windows XP, IE9 wont?

Are MS mad? People are not going to upgrade to 7 for Internet Explorer, it will only cause the huge amount of XP users that are also long term IE 6,7 and 8 users to move to Chrome or Firefox to get web pages working properly in the future.

Why would MS do this to themselves?

To stop people from downgrading to XP from 7 when they get new machines?

omnicoder said,

If they're sticking to XP they aren't going to care about not being able to use Facebook or Youtube. It's mostly businesses who won't switch at this point, because of web-driven databases that only work on IE6 right now.

LOL. 70% of residential customers are on XP and only use their PCs for youtube and facebook.

Tech Greek said,
All it took was for Apple to come along and start stealing market share away. Competition is great! I'll be making the switch!

I agree. Great competition is the reason we have seen Microsoft improve tremendously in regard to Windows, Windows Live, Windows Phone, Office, Expression, Visual Studio (and the .NET Framework), Zune, Xbox (Kinect), Bing and now possibly even Internet Explorer (something I had lost hope for). I'm very excited to try out Internet Explorer 9 and I hope both Microsoft and the competition keep it up

Tech Greek said,
All it took was for Apple to come along and start stealing market share away. Competition is great! I'll be making the switch!

What market share did Apple start taking...?

Firefox and Chrome took market share.

andrewbares said,

What market share did Apple start taking...?

Firefox and Chrome took market share.


Lol yea, was wondering the same thing. What have Apple got to do with this? Safari has a minute market share that doesn't show any signs of radical upwards movement any time soon. Besides the only reason they have any market share at all on Windows is because their bloody iTunes updater sneaks Safari onto you're computer unless you happen to notice it and uncheck the option before clicking the Update button.

TCLN Ryster said,

Lol yea, was wondering the same thing. What have Apple got to do with this? Safari has a minute market share that doesn't show any signs of radical upwards movement any time soon. Besides the only reason they have any market share at all on Windows is because their bloody iTunes updater sneaks Safari onto you're computer unless you happen to notice it and uncheck the option before clicking the Update button.

You could say webkit counts?

Tech Greek said,
All it took was for Apple to come along and start stealing market share away. Competition is great! I'll be making the switch!

I don't think Apple is what MS sees as a threat. If I would say any company can threaten MS it is Google...

I'll tell you what is brilliant here, the fact that MS is now releasing software as BETA, that previously was released as the final product. Releasing them from any real criticism. It's a brilliant move. Should have called Vista a beta, cuz that's exactly what it was.

jimmyfal said,
I'll tell you what is brilliant here, the fact that MS is now releasing software as BETA, that previously was released as the final product. Releasing them from any real criticism. It's a brilliant move. Should have called Vista a beta, cuz that's exactly what it was.

No they aren't... Sigh. This isn't the real deal here, an RTM of IE9 will be coming. It might be a longer beta than IE8 and IE7 had since it has to keep up with HTML5. But I'm sure updates will be released on a regular basis after IE9 has RTMed.

jimmyfal said,
I'll tell you what is brilliant here, the fact that MS is now releasing software as BETA, that previously was released as the final product. Releasing them from any real criticism. It's a brilliant move. Should have called Vista a beta, cuz that's exactly what it was.

Guess you haven't noticed all the past open betas MS has done huh?

Does anyone have this picture in high res in blue and orange (sunset)?

Possibly without the Gorillaz logo? It makes kick ass wallpaper but would even be better wall paper with no text.

Thanks

This is just a simple picture from Gorillaz Plastic Beach album with some text and an IE9 icon, but I hope this event will be great.

mmyon said,
This is just a simple picture from Gorillaz Plastic Beach album with some text and an IE9 icon, but I hope this event will be great.

What shocks me is that Microsoft has been talking about the "beauty of the web" for weeks and they select some of the most unattractive animation to somehow be tied in with it. Gorillaz? Yuck. Those are some ugly characters.

I like the poster as well. From a personal perspective, I have no real interest in IE9 (yet). This could change, though. Right now I seem to be favoring Google Chrome and Firefox.

What I did find interest, however, was when I was over at my parents place helping with some computer related issues I found out my mother was actually very excited about the IE9 public beta. This I found somewhat surprising. Go figure. She usually not that up on tech stuff anymore.

It might have something to do with her utter disdain for Firefox.

Drunken Beard said,
You found your MOTHER excited about the IE9 public beta ? Kudos to her !

Yeah! lmao, I wish my mom got excited about this kind of stuff!

Electric Jolt said,

Yeah! lmao, I wish my mom got excited about this kind of stuff!

actually I got your mom pretty excited the other night HAHA

GP007 said,

Everyone knew this was coming at some point.

Except me... Oh well if you like banging 54 year olds (eww yuck!) then umm whatever, I already have a stepdad I hate.

IE9 is a big step up though the GUI needs to appeal to people who aren't tech savvy and easily be modified so that tech savvy people can enjoy using only what they need. In example rumors abound about a download manager for IE9 so there should be a nice friendly icon with a text label that says downloads for non-technical people and of course the ability to remove it for those who scream minimalism to the point that all matter and energy are removed from existence. :-D

JAB Creations said,
IE9 is a big step up though the GUI needs to appeal to people who aren't tech savvy and easily be modified so that tech savvy people can enjoy using only what they need. In example rumors abound about a download manager for IE9 so there should be a nice friendly icon with a text label that says downloads for non-technical people and of course the ability to remove it for those who scream minimalism to the point that all matter and energy are removed from existence. :-D

Well as far as we've seen this far the address field and the tabs or on the same bar with that UI flaw i wont even bother myself with beta testing...

Leonick said,

Well as far as we've seen this far the address field and the tabs or on the same bar with that UI flaw i wont even bother myself with beta testing...

Despite the possibility you can probably move the tab bar below the address bar...?

Calum said,

Despite the possibility you can probably move the tab bar below the address bar...?

Well now that you say it, it might be possible ^^ didnt think about that

Still, hope there is a lot more to the UI than what we've seen so far

Leonick, you can't dismiss an entire application with lots of UX research backing it because of a screenshot ... Everyone has seen the tabs/url in the same bar thingy, but I like to think that it's some totally new way to organize the browser that we'll learn about when the Beta is released.

I think the screen shot is just a publicity stunt for the sites that release it...though it would not surprise me to see Microsoft release yet another crappy GUI. They really need to concentrate on making a GUI that is easy for non-technical people to work with that have friendly icons and text labels while also making it easy to slim the GUI down. I don't see this happening, M$ has been killing the GUI off starting with Vista and it's only gotten worse. The Bing team has done a good job at making things that required a click a mouseover...hopefully the IE team stopped guessing and started listening to people who know what they're talking about...hopefully.

JAB Creations said,
I think the screen shot is just a publicity stunt for the sites that release it...though it would not surprise me to see Microsoft release yet another crappy GUI. They really need to concentrate on making a GUI that is easy for non-technical people to work with that have friendly icons and text labels while also making it easy to slim the GUI down. I don't see this happening, M$ has been killing the GUI off starting with Vista and it's only gotten worse. The Bing team has done a good job at making things that required a click a mouseover...hopefully the IE team stopped guessing and started listening to people who know what they're talking about...hopefully.

When the Wright brothers took to the sky, the expert all agree that people are too big to fly. If Microsoft listen to the "expert" advice, it might as well go bankrupt.

After all, Apple make what Steve want and not what the public want and see how popular it is.

Calum said,

Despite the possibility you can probably move the tab bar below the address bar...?
Why not on the blank title bar above the address bar, which is currently wasting screen real estate? What is the obsession with having the tabs below or on the side of the address bar? Just because Google did it first, doesn't mean MS shouldn't do it.

With IE6 on XP, I used to rearrange my browser controls on a single bar - Menu, Back, Forward, Stop, Refresh, Address Bar, Go. All that I missed and MS missed was the Tabs, and all they had to do was put tabs on top instead of the Title of the web page. Instead they completely overhauled the UI with IE7 which is still sluggish with IE8. This is just terrible from MS.

day2die said,

After all, Apple make what Steve want and not what the public want and see how popular it is.
In spite of that, he's the best thing that ever happened to Apple. Steve really has great ideas and he is very intelligent. I've seen how sharp his eye with respect to UX in several videos. There was one about how obsessed he is with little details such as placement of text and size of font on http://www.apple.com .

Because of this he satisfies more than 80% of his customers, which has created a great following for Apple. Most of the people who use Apple products will continue to buy Apple products, which is why Apple is dealing in a whole different world compared to Microsoft or Google. People would look towards Apple if Google or MS screw up anything even by a little bit and coming back from the Apple world is a difficult thing for most Apple customers.

Edited by Jebadiah, Sep 12 2010, 5:26am :

iAltair said,
3 more days.

How could it be 3 more days on September 11th, 2010. It was 4 more days.

Annnnd! Now it is only 2 days until IE9 launch! Because today is September 13th, 2010!

Electric Jolt said,

How could it be 3 more days on September 11th, 2010. It was 4 more days.

Annnnd! Now it is only 2 days until IE9 launch! Because today is September 13th, 2010!

Sorry, timezone problem. I'm in Singapore.