Most web devs today code to W3C web standards in XHTML+CSS which offers reduced bandwidth costs, greater interoperability, greater accessibility, easier maintenance and much greater freedom for design compared to a "traditional" HTML 4 only design that uses tables extensively. IE is by far the most problematic web browser out there if you are coding using XHTML+CSS since its implementation of CSS is p***-poor at best.
IE is quite long in the tooth (over 5 years old) and many of the issues are promised to be fixed in the upcoming v7 thanks to a bit of strong competition from FF. I never said IE can't be coded for. I simply said IE is simply a PIA to code for.
Calling IE more refined and less clunky is a matter of opinion which you are entitled to. I use FF since I find it more refined than IE for a multitude of reasons including stability. The current version of FF is far far less likely to have problems connecting to sites than IE and when WinExplorer crashes I don't loose every friggin web page I have open. That's my experience anyway in using FF since its 0.6 release.
FF isn't a Mac thing, it's a WinPC thing. The UI doesn't fit in the Mac environment. That's why they made Camino which is FF built from the ground up for Macs.
Security: Firewalls and routers don't matter since IE is given permission to access the internet it bypasses those items. If you have not run into any issues, that's good but the issue remains. I would recommend installing SpywareBlaster
at the very least just in case.
Most corporations use IE because that's what comes with the computer. To use a different browser would require the IT department to perform extensive testing to ensure stability/compatability with the companies hardware/software/security setup. Then there is the time needed to install it on every computer. Many corporations do use FF but many more don't since they don't want to invest the time to do so. Basically, the larger the company, the less likely you'll see FF due to the cost of implementing it. This isn't saying FF is not good, it is just generally the procedure for any software that is used.
Anyhow I don't really care what browser you use. I'm not telling you you are wrong and I'm right. It's entirely up to you and your tastes. Browsers, like cameras are tools and each one has it's on set of benefits and minuses. Use the one you like best; I personally switch around between four of them for various tasks. There are tons to choose from (IE, FF, Opera, Mozilla, Camino, Safari, Camino, OmniWeb, and many IE spin-offs such as Avant) but IE is the only one that I tell people to be cautious about due to it's security issues.
There are three areas for possible improvement of the font on this Forum: it isn't black enough, the letters are too thin and they are a bit sandwiched together. According to my Word program it is Tahoma 7.5. Converting it to something that everyone has and is very readable - such as Times New Roman 12 - would be considerably easier on the eyes.
Times is not a good web font. Serifs are usually best for titles only. ArsTech is a good example
as it lets you switch between serif and non-serif body fonts. A non-serif font family starting with Veranda would be much more legible and is a common font on any computer. The Mac doesn't have Tahoma and so I'm currently viewing this with Veranda and it's much easier on the eyes than it is on my PC using Tahoma.
Adjusting the kerning of the fonts may help too (CSS property "letter-spacing").