Internet Explorer 8 is a fairly fast tabbed webbrowser which sports unique features such as a website suggestion service (based on what other sites you’ve visited) and “web accelerators”, glorified shortcuts for common tasks such as blogging or finding maps.
Compared to both Internet Explorer 6 and 7, 8 is an improvement. It is indeed faster, and it feels more stable. The only problem is, there are so many superior alternatives out there. Microsoft is playing catch-up with Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Apple Safari and Opera, and Microsoft is losing. Internet Explorer 8, feature-wise, is nearly as fast and stable as the alternatives; that earns you a 4 hearts rating. Unfortunately, web standards and CSS compatability is still in the drains, which is inexcusable in this second attempt at getting with the program. That earns you a 3 hearts penalty, a penalty which any web-designer is authorized to give. As such, Internet Explorer 8 is at best wasted effort, and holding the web back at worst.