A little birdie told me today that NASA has given up entirely on Internet Explorer. Now, if you are an employee of NASA, every time you go to a page using IE, you get up to three prompts telling you how risky it is to run scripts. The official line is that the newest IE vulnerability was the proverbial straw, and now NASA’s standard internal browser is Firefox.
That NASA has taken this step isn’t all that surprising – NASA has been odd man out for many years, encouraging innovation instead of pushing for standardization in their IT systems. But this is interesting because I don’t know of another government agency that has recently standardized (internally) on any browser besides IE for…well, it’s been a long time. Years. Time was Mozilla (Netscape) was standard at NCI, but even that holdout has given up the ghost. Maybe this will give them precedent so they can move to a good browser.
Update 9:24 AM 12/5/05: Perhaps this rumor is just that – a rumor. See one of the comments below, from someone with a .ru address but who says they’re coming from NASA.
Update 10:24 AM 12/5/05: And another, below, from (apparently) NASA software contractor.
Update 4:27 PM 12/5/05: And a couple more, below, from more apparent NASA employees.
I think it’s time to put this rumor to rest. There are three options:
- It’s completely false and my NASA employee (aka "little birdie") was flat-out wrong.
- It’s true for his part of NASA.
- It’s true for all of NASA but a bunch of people haven’t heard about the policy shift yet.
The only way to resolve it is for someone to corroborate my birdie’s story, or for the furor to die down…