Firefox 2

26 October 2006

So I finally sorted out installing Firefox 2 on my computer. And very nice it is too, it seems to run a little faster and more smoothly, and there’s some nice features, such as remembering past session states after a crash or restart – although I can see this leading to all kinds of embarrassing or downright awful situations – think of all the people who are going to suddenly start up without remembering the last session they were browsing with, you know the 25+ tabs of exotic ostrich porn they were looking at the previous night, when firing up Firefox in front of their partner/mother/boss. Expect a comedy bug report to be filed in the next few days.

Oh, and the RSS integration with Bloglines/Google Reader is an absolute godsend, and works like a charm. And the spell checker is a lovely idea, automatically highlighting what it thinks are errors in any text area with a dotted red underline. I don’t seem to have had the problems with wrong versions of English as doctorvee has had, as I picked the UK English dictionary to use. However, I did notice one glaring omission when trying to spell check this very blog post:

Firefox's UK English dictionary does not have the word 'Firefox' in it

Yes, that’s right. The UK English dictionary for Firefox doesn’t, er, have the word “Firefox” in it.

Now the bad news. The new theme is ass-ugly – having gradient fills in the UI is a really bad idea, the glossy icons look too Microsofty and afunctional, and there are too many engraved lines all over the place, it makes for a very crowded look. I’ve downgraded the theme to the old Firefox 1.5 one which is IMHO a much nicer and simpler one. Oh, and the exit buttons on every tab – how annoying. They clutter up the tab bar and mean accidental tab-closing is much more likely. And as I’m a laptop person I use Ctrl-W much more. Luckily, there’s a solution at hand. First go to about:config and you can:

…revert to the Firefox 1.5 behavior by changing the browser.tabs.closeButtons value to 3. This will not display close tabs on individual tabs, and turn on a single close tab button at the right end of the tab bar.

From a very useful set of hints & tips from Lifehacker.

Anyway, overall, thumbs up overall – it’s a really nice piece of work, and what issues it has are easily fixed. With Microsoft’s IE7 out recently as well it’s good to see Firefox (mostly) keeping one step ahead of the competition. Oh, speaking of which… Hahahahaha (via Tom)


7 Responses

remembering past session states after a crash or restart

That’ll be the SessionSaver extension. Handy. And it sounds like they’ve integrated Performancing (or something similar) for blogging. But I can get extensions any time, and you’re not really selling the rest of the differences between 1.x and 2.0.

Well there’s plenty of differences I suppose, but I only talked about the ones I liked (and disliked) the most. True, most of the new functionality can be implemented in 1.5 by extensions, but managing loads of extensions is a *pain*, and having them integrated into the browser prevents possible incompatibilities (probably) improves their performance, and saves all the brouhaha of keeping them up to date.

Glad you’ve finally installed it – have been using it since its earliest public beta and love it. I use the Noia theme, which is pretty cool and less shiny than the default (but don’t mind that too much).

I’ve seen some reports that it clears form fields when you use the back button — is this true?

I thought I was the only one with an exotic ostrich porn addiction!

You will, of course, be delighted to know that you’re already the number one Google result for exotic ostrich porn. So we know what one the content of those 25+ tabs will be…

I’m downloading it now – this, on a Cornish dial-up, is a lengthy and rather tenuous process, but it’s got to be better than Safari, which is really starting to annoy me. Google Talk doesn’t work in it, and the Mac-window size means that I’m typing over your linklog here. Or so it appears to me.

At least with Firefox, you can actually view the exotic ostrich porn basically as it should be.