I am always amused by the revisionist view of history when it comes to browsers. When web apps were first being developed there was really only a choice of Netscape or IE and bloody few standards. At the time Microsoft's browser worked better for most things, which is why so many apps were written for IE 5, 5.5 and 6. The fact that the standards bodies chose not to adopt MS extensions but go another way is really a large cause of the problems we have now. And yes it was a deliberate decision to spite MS because of how MS had beaten Netscape into dust. Go research the archives if you really want to know what happened.
Yes I know there were a few minor browsers around in the late nineties like Opera but they had little market share (<2%). Only Netscape and IE mattered. Safari didn't arrive until 2002 and Chrome only in 2008. Firefox was originally a Netscape fork and only got market share much later.
BTW, how about using a correct image to lead articles about Spartan. They should feature Master Chief not 300. This is MS after all.