In the recent hype of web browsers race, the seventh platform preview of the Internet Explorer 9 was announced 2 days ago, including those new JavaScript engine performance and optimizations updates that made IE 9 the fastest browser to pass the Sun Spider test. I’m not writing this post to promote this as a big Microsoft success finally in the browser’s domain. But when comparing today’s results with the previous results of IE8 or the 1st preview of IE 9, it looks like the old, slow buggy browser (as described by Firefox and Chrome fans) is coming back to the top again – at least and till now in the javascript performance.

During the past 3 days, it was everywhere over the web that Microsoft is cheating in the Sun Spider test based on Mozilla developer post, who was not even sure and was analyzing some behaviors. Unfortunately, by default, everybody thinks that IE 9 can’t compete with chrome and Firefox. I don’t want to get into the details, and what’s actually true and how the browser optimizes the dead code since it was clarified in different places, the full story is on ZDNet, and the technical details are on IE blog(Please read carefully).

What I want to share here is my vision and observation of what the IE9 JavaScript engine Chakra shared on twitter in a Q/A style for 2 hours today. I was just monitoring all the streams mentioning #IE9 Hashtag and re-tweeting the questions I liked; most of the questions were about IE 9 in general, not specific to the JavaScript engine. I suspect that when the news and questions speeded over twitter, people just started to ask all questions and criticism in mind.

I noticed that the IE team was not answering all the questions, or they were slow or selective to the questions they answered. Again this is maybe those questions were not related to the Chakra JavaScript engine. Later they stated that they are answering JavaScript engine related questions.

Many tweeps wanted to know how the dead code optimization works in IE 9 and wither it works only on a specific case –when running the Sun Spider test – or it’s an unintentional bug that will be fixed. The IE team assured that the Sun Spider test doesn’t represent a real word problem, and the optimization analysis relied on crowdsourcing real web applications that are currently running and used over the web. They also focused that Chakra’s compiler is adaptive & optimizes based on the code patterns used on a page & the hardware it is running on.

General questions included if the IE 9 support more CSS3 & HTML5 features like Web Sockets, HTML5 forms, FileReaderAPI, WebGL, or Web Workers? The answer to those features was that Microsoft is still evaluating the adoption of those features and is currently investing in adding HTML5 standards that are wildly used by websites.

One of the specific questions was how IE standard development works across browsers. The answer was that the IE team is trying to stamp out any inconsistencies between browsers by submitting +2800 standard tests to the W3C, and the work on development tools is still going with each release. I really liked this question and the answer as well.

Some questions asked about features that were already included in the IE 9 like the notification, so the team just pointed to the suitable resources. While others reported some bugs in the beta version, those were requested to submit these bugs at the http://connect.microsoft.com web site. Also, the team answered that their might be new other platform previews before the RC or the final release, but there was no clear answer.

The IE team also promised that some questions and more details are posted on the IE team blog later today, which I am still waiting for because 140 characters tweets are for sure insufficient.