@Doc. IE8 isn't thaaat slow now, in terms of program load I find it faster then Firefox (slower then everything else though) and in terms of page load speed it seems to keep up with firefox.
They both take a similar amount of time to load for me. The only difference is that when Firefox shows up, you can use it from the get-go, whereas it takes a shorter time for the IE window to appear, but you still have to wait a while as the tab loads (this is one of the major disadvantages of IE, I reckon. All the other browsers handle extra tabs really well; only IE takes a horrendous amount of time to ready each tab). Both take similar amounts of time from clicking the icon to having a browser you can actually use.