Former Chrome Team Member Examines Difficulties Behind Creating Internet Explorer

What started out as a compliment to Microsoft by a former employee is now being criticized for being a “glorification of a toxic work culture.” The episode is quickly turning into a debate about work ethic but also corporate superiority. Hadi Partovi, now the CEO of nonprofit education organization Code.org, on Monday shared how the development of Internet Explorer was a “sprint” for the team and how they worked hard to make the project a success, but what led to divorces and broken marriages. Aaron Boodman, technical lead on the Google Chrome browser, criticized Partovi that the working culture of the Google Chrome project was nothing special and that everyone kept to their eight-hour schedule.

Boodman’s answer to Partovi seems to point to the fact that a company’s output depends not only on the hard work of its employees, but also on intelligence. Boodman, who said working on the Chrome project was one of the most formative experiences of his career, added, “Chrome was delivered without any sprints” and there was no drama, no broken marriages and broken families.

Partovi’s Twitter thread described how Microsoft was trying to compete with Netscape Navigator, which held 95% of the market in 1995. The Explorer team had only nine people and was “desperately trying to grow as fast as possible”. Partovi also said the Explorer team was the “hardest working team” he’s ever worked with.

But some of his tweets weren’t well received.

Boodman, on the other hand, said managing the Chrome team “to deliver high-quality software without deadly gears” was a “miracle” and explained how it happened.

In his next tweet, he described what he meant by “senior” and pointed out how common it is for older members to “get old for management and leave typing to the kids.”

“Having strong technical leadership has many advantages, but one of them is that it naturally leads to a healthier cadence. These people usually need to be home for dinner and are old enough to know that death marches don’t work,” he added.

On the topic, Boodman also advised people working on software projects how they should build their businesses, employing experienced engineers to lead their teams.


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