Are you familiar with an ActiveX control called XmlHttpRequest?
By 2004, even Safari supported it. Why?
Because without it, there is no AJAX. All web pages are essentially static.
A lot of ActiveX components were a horrible mistake, granted. People make mistakes, companies make mistakes. As bad as Java applets? Yeah, probably. Not as bad as Active Desktop but definitely up there with applets. But it's important to remember that we got benefits from it too.
Unless you want to go back to to cgi-bin and Geocities pages.