I am looking to construct a web based application possibly using PHP and MySQL. Given IE's well publicized security issues would oyu suggest using i different browser to run the application on? Wich one ? As I am not really familiar with PHP does it functio9n well on other browsers ? I ask as I am still searching for the best vehicle to accomplish my goals.
Is this site just for your use, if so choose any browser you prefer. However if this application is for general use then you should target any and ALL browsers (within reason that is) that you think visitors to your site / application will use. If its running on a corporate intranet then you may be able to dictate the browser but again its doubtful (especially if the company has a mix of computers (eg age or make). You cannot rely on testing on just one browser, there are differences between the same browser on different platforms (OS's)
If its a retail 'traditional' web application then you are reliant on what they, your visitors have or want. Bear in mind some visitors don't want or like graphics, some may access your site from devices other than a conventional PC (eg a PDA, mobile phone - maybe even web TV). To a large extent the choice of browser is dictated by the user, unless you have such fantastic site content that you can coerce you users to use only the specified browser type.
In practice howver the vast majority of 'normal' (IE non technical) users use IE, yes Firefox is gaining ground but it is still a long way behind IE. You also need to consider versions of browsers ie IE 3,4,5,6 & 6.1 etc.....
I recommend that you should pretty-much assume everything opposite from the way that Microsoft encourages people to think:
The user probably isn't running Internet Explorer.
The user probably isn't running the latest version of anything.
The user might not run Flash, or any other cool and sexy plugin, and believe it or not there is still a preponderance of dial-up connections.
If your web-site doesn't work with their configuration, whatever it is, they will take their business, and their money, elsewhere within about fifteen seconds, max. Never to return. The burden of "making it work" rests entirely with you, not them.
Unless you have a truly incredible website that coerces people to use the browser of your choice,
or you are able to control the browser (by virtue of being on an intranet and/or a standard platform)
or you are preapred for some people to ignore your site
or you are well enough funded to devlop multiple versions of your site dependent on what browser they use then to a certain extent you are playing a numbers game. What is the trade off between "whizzy features" and functionality then you must design for the lowest common denominators.
I like the look of XML / XSL, but not all the visitors onthe site I support are XML capable. The customers budgets don't permit multiple sites so the reality they get basic functionality
In essence 'yer pays yer money, yer takes yer choice'