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After hearing about it on Morning Edition this morning, I have just installed a new web browser called Firefox.

Get it here: http://www.mozilla.org/

When you install it, it will give you the option of importing all of your favorites, cookies, settings, and history from Internet Explorer.

My first impression is quite favorable. It is noticably faster than IE, and supposedly more secure. The download is free. It doesn't supprise me now that Firefox is taking 1% per month from Microsoft in a new browser war.


( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 6th, 2005 04:08 pm (UTC)
Be very selective of the plug-ins that you download for it.

Some of the packs - like the tab-save - will bog down your browser significantly.

Firefox is probably the most powerful browser available.

Most web-developers swear by it.

Jan. 6th, 2005 05:48 pm (UTC)
Heh... I just downloaded it the other day and LJ'd about it. I'm pleased so far, though it does seem to take just a little longer to load pages for me. Doesn't seem to crash as much, and I love the tabbed browsing.
Jan. 6th, 2005 06:51 pm (UTC)

I've been pretty much off of IE on the primary since the advent of NS6.

When you're a bit more comfortable, take a look at bookmarklets. They generally are too large for IE ;)
Jan. 6th, 2005 07:17 pm (UTC)
i try not to touch IE too much-- icky!-- i usually use opera. i know that absolutely no one designs for opera, but i don't care-- it has funky features i like, like its zoom function & mouse gestures & a very intuitive email program.

i find the browser wars really tiresome. i'd like to see the net move past html-- it's just one specialized tool that's gotten way overused-- html news articles, html blogs, html discussion groups, html chats-- it's silliness.
Jan. 7th, 2005 01:58 am (UTC)
There are plug-ins for Firefox that enhance the browser with zoom and mouse gestures. But I'm not sure what in the hell you'd need an "email program" integrated into your browser for.

I enjoyed Opera through v. 5.6, but after that it got a bit buggy and laggy.

And you can clearly compare how bloated it is when you strip it down to the code.

Jan. 7th, 2005 08:00 am (UTC)
actually i found those plug-ins for firefox right after i posted that, & i think i've been converted. firefox is a damn good program.

of course one doesn't need an email program integrated into a browser, but one doesn't need half the other things browsers do these days either: PDFs, flash, bottle openers, whatever. sometimes it does feel more convenient to group things together.

it's all very very subjective & murky. our digital egos.

Jan. 7th, 2005 09:20 am (UTC)
pdf files are "made" for OS X, so I don't have any issues with them, but I can see how it would be appealing for PC users to not have to bother with extra Adobe software.

I missed Opera's resurrect feature for the longest time. Flipping back and forth between Safari and Firefox, I've gotten used to not having it. It'll eventually make a come-back.

Jan. 6th, 2005 08:44 pm (UTC)
Plus, individual settings can be tweaked to work better over DSL or cable:

1.Type "about:config" into the address bar and hit return. Scroll down and look for the following entries:

network.http.pipelining network.http.proxy.pipelining network.http.pipelining.maxrequests

Normally the browser will make one request to a web page at a time. When you enable pipelining it will make several at once, which really speeds up page loading.

2. Alter the entries as follows:

Set "network.http.pipelining" to "true"

Set "network.http.proxy.pipelining" to "true"

Set "network.http.pipelining.maxrequests" to some number like 30. This means it can make up to 30 requests at once.

3. Lastly right-click anywhere and select New-> Integer. Name it "nglayout.initialpaint.delay" and set its value to "0". This value is the amount of time the browser waits before it acts on information it receives.
Jan. 7th, 2005 04:52 am (UTC)
I have made the changes you suggested
I went to CNN.com to test it. The page has lots of info and graphics packed onto it, and it did load pretty quickly.

Where can I really see the effect of the configuration changes you suggested?

Thanks, BTW.
Jan. 7th, 2005 12:42 pm (UTC)
Re: I have made the changes you suggested
dang. that's a really good question. I began looking for the config changes on the usenet when my livejournal friends page took a while to load, and my performance is better after the changes, so i know they work well with say, making an image heavy page load more quickly... But as for a site that says "you loaded this page in x seconds, in y pipelines, with a page refresh rate of n, etc" I don't know of such a resource. (But I'd love to find out about one.) I know there was one at Amazon.com on the intranet.

I'll have to keep looking.
Jan. 7th, 2005 04:49 pm (UTC)
Re: I have made the changes you suggested
image loading
self test: page loads etc, require your own calculations http://www.adindex.co.uk/wwwtest/index.htm
Mozilla page tests: More self-testing required
Lots of free, open source tools for web load testing
Jan. 6th, 2005 10:17 pm (UTC)
I love it.
Jan. 7th, 2005 01:34 am (UTC)
Well I seem to be in an ever-dwindling minority here, but let me just go on record as saying that I think Firefox sucks. This is not due to any particular fondness for Microsoft, or IE—but the fact is that neither Firefox nor Netscape nor any Mozilla-associated browser has interpreted HTML correctly for some years, since the advent of CSS. Perhaps Firefox is a better program on some conceptual level, I don't know, but the bottom line is that it just doesn't format HTML properly. At all. It does it wrong. And if you read the Mozilla documentation on such things, it says essentially "yes, we know that such-and-such functions don't work, and they really should, but fuck it we don't care." This strikes me as irresponsible and disrespectful, particularly of us HTML-making folk who invested quite a bit of time and energy in learning how to write good HTML, only to have these beatnik upstarts show up and negate everything we have learned, and everything this industry had previously agreed upon. It is arrogance I tell you—unbridled arrogance. And vile hypocrisy!
Jan. 7th, 2005 02:07 am (UTC)
Arrogance is also expecting things to be the way you want them to be.

I haven't had a page with "shifted" HTML since Firefox came out (Mozilla would wig out every now and again). I'm sure there are sites out there that are effected, but they're not part of my browsing.

I know plenty of code monkeys who love Firefox, and deal with the challenges in good spirit, without resorting to slanders (e.g. "beatnik upstarts", "vile hypocrisy", etc). I find precious few experiences worthy of inspiring such antagonism - and a browser certainly isn't one of them.

Save your beligerence for the GOP.

Jan. 7th, 2005 03:48 am (UTC)
are you calling me arrogant?
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )

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