$330 gravestone in Korea goes viral

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A Korean software engineer couldn’t pass up an opportunity to dunk on Microsoft’s now-defunct Internet Explorer web browser.

Microsoft on Wednesday halted support for the once-dominant browser that legions of web surfers loved to hate — and a few still claim to adore.

The 27-year-old application now joins BlackBerry phones, dial-up modems and Palm Pilots in the dustbin of tech history.

Jung Ki-young decided to commemorate Internet Explorer’s demise by spending $330 on a headstone.

He then designed it to include the “e” logo just above the epitaph: “He was a good tool to download other browsers.”

After the memorial went on show at a cafe run by his brother in the southern city of Gyeongju, a photo of the tombstone went viral.

Jung told Reuters that the memorial showed his mixed feelings for the older software, which had played such a big part in his working life.

“It was a pain in the ass, but I would call it a love-hate relationship because Explorer itself once dominated an era,” he told Reuters.

The headstone is on display in the southern Korean city of Gyeongju.
The headstone is on display in the southern Korean city of Gyeongju.
Courtesy of Kiyoung Jung/AFP via

He said he found it took him longer to make sure his websites and online apps worked with Explorer, than with other browsers.

But his customers kept asking him to make sure their websites looked good in Explorer, which remained the default browser in South Korean government offices and many banks for years.

Launched in 1995, Explorer became the world’s leading browser for more than a decade as it was bundled with Microsoft’s Windows operating system that came pre-installed in billions of computers.

Internet Explorer was overtaken by Google's rival web browser Chrome in the late 2000s.
Internet Explorer was overtaken by Google’s rival web browser Chrome in the late 2000s.
Bloomberg via Getty Images

But it started losing out to Google’s Chrome in the late 2000s and became a subject of countless internet memes, with some developers suggesting it was sluggish compared with its rivals.

Jung said he had meant to give people a laugh with the gravestone, but was still surprised about how far the joke went online.

“That’s another reason for me to thank the Explorer, it has now allowed me to make a world-class joke,” he said.

“I regret that it’s gone, but won’t miss it. So its retirement, to me, is a good death.”

With Post wires

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