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Firefox's Effect On Other Browsers

Soulskill posted more than 6 years ago | from the driving-the-market dept.

Mozilla 475

An anonymous reader points out an interview with Mozilla's "evangelist," Christopher Blizzard, regarding the future of Firefox and how it affects other browsers. It's an Austrian site, so forgive the comma abuse. From derStandard: "It's sort of interesting though, part of our strategy is to make sure, that we continue making change and the indirect effect of this is that Microsoft continues to have to do releases, because if we get so far ahead that we're able to drive the platform they are not able to keep up and keep their users. I mean, we have this joke which says 'Internet Explorer 7 is the best release we ever did,' because they would not have done it, if we would have not built Firefox. And the same is true for Apple, they are doing a lot to keep up with us. Safari 3.1 is a good example, as far as we see it, the only reason they did this release was that Firefox 3 would come out and have Javascript speed which would be twice as fast as theirs, cause that's how it was before. So by pushing other people to make releases we can go on our mission to make sure the web stays healthy."

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fp (-1)

gearloos (816828) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283393)

yaya

Re:fp (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283403)

Erste Post du Dummkopf!

Re:fp (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283797)

I mean, we have this joke which says "Internet Explorer 7 is the best release we ever did", because they would not have done it, if we would have not built Firefox.

Bad grammar makes head asplode.

What astonishes me... (5, Insightful)

TomRK1089 (1270906) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283401)

What astonishes me is more that this latest release has gotten even my totally non-tech-savvy friends to download it and acknowledge its superiority to Internet Explorer 7. The Firefox team has not only improved the browser for those of us who already used it, but managed to convert another large segment of the market. It's sort of like the Nintendo Wii effect -- they realized it made more sense not to enlarge their slice of the tech-savvy pie, but to expand the pie to include casual users as well. Or at least that's how I see it, feel free to correct me with your own interpretation.

Re:What astonishes me... (5, Insightful)

liquidpele (663430) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283467)

It's gotten a lot better for non-techie users due to more websites testing against them though. I remember using Firebird 0.7 and about 1 out of every 20 sites would not render very well. For non-techie users, having to then start IE for more than 2 sites is a reason to not even try anything but IE.

Re:What astonishes me... (5, Informative)

ben2umbc (1090351) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283817)

It's gotten a lot better for non-techie users due to more websites testing against them though. I remember using Firebird 0.7 and about 1 out of every 20 sites would not render very well. For non-techie users, having to then start IE for more than 2 sites is a reason to not even try anything but IE.

That's absolutely true. About a year and a half ago I started using my mac exclusively, and with that I lost the IE Tab extension for Firefox. Initially I missed it every day, having to use Safari to try to render pages correctly. Now it is a complete non-issue.

Re:What astonishes me... (1, Flamebait)

Hal_Porter (817932) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283995)

If everything you use renders ok in IE, why not just use IE? Especially as it now has tabs, which was the main feature where Firefox was beating it.

Re:What astonishes me... (5, Insightful)

ben2umbc (1090351) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284089)

Security, Add Ons, Speed, Reliability, Open Source, and -10 Microsoft points, I can go on... Seriously, are you still drinking the IE 6 Kool Aid?

Re:What astonishes me... (5, Insightful)

EdelFactor19 (732765) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284091)

probably because A> IE is a gaping security hole. B> it still sucks and has minimal useful plugins. C> you might be using linux D> choice

tabs were not the main feature; the main feature was the security, lack of popups, lack of exploits and etc.

Re:What astonishes me... (1)

k1t10 (940115) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284125)

If i switched to ie i'd really miss the plugins i have like session manager, for example.

Re:What astonishes me... (5, Insightful)

Onyma (1018104) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283523)

I can sum much of this up with one example.

My mother is a typical late 60's web user... she has a handful of site she likes to visit and not much more. She has memorized the basic functions I taught her years ago and she's happy with that.

Recently I upgraded her FF2 to FF3 and taught her how to use the new address bar and bookmarking / search functionality. She nailed it in 2-3 minutes and was looking up sites in her history with ease. I was back there a couple days ago and sure enough she has already bookmarked a dozen new sites and raves about how much easier she finds the internet now. (you'd think they had redesigned the entire internet... which in essence is what a browser upgrade can do for you)

To me that right there outlines one of the reasons FF3 is going to produce another large spike in new users. Get what you want easily and with less hassle.

Piling on... (2, Insightful)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283775)

The SQLite manager add-on is incredible.
I'm looking forward to canned index databases for interesting site(s).
The whole idea of exposing data to the user is going to lead to some interesting long-term effects.
If nothing else, one hopes that it will help usher the demise of that ugly data Bastille called the Windows Registry.

Re:What astonishes me... (5, Funny)

ben2umbc (1090351) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283833)

Can you please come over and teach my mom. And while you're at it can you work on getting rid of AOL? I feel like she's stuck in the 90s.

Re:What astonishes me... (1)

aliquis (678370) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283627)

Well, Apple still got things to learn.

I use to complain about how much RAM Safari leaks, how it always fucks up in the end and how it doesn't help if I close all my tabs because the browser will still use a bunch of ram.

Here is a screenshot of my Safari 3.1.1 in OS X:
http://img224.imageshack.us/my.php?image=bild198rz4.png [imageshack.us]

Sure, I admit I have multiple windows open, 6-7 maybe? And quite a few tabs in them, maybe 50? And this time it has even been running for multiple days! (Thought I have been at my moms place without Internet for 2-3 days so that's probably why it haven't crashed already, I mean, those day put no additional load on it.)

And yes, Adobes flash bullshit may be one of the reason it crashes, but I don't care, Apple don't give me an option to not have that bullshit and all webpages have a ridiculous amount of flash bullshit banners on them.

And what annoys me the most is that WHEN Safari crashes (which are within a day more often, ranging from an hour to 2 days.) all my tabs are lost for all eternity with all the information I was waiting to look at.

So how does Firefox 3 do? Well, I admit my current Firefox 3 feels a little sluggish, and it takes a while for it to react as it should.. But look what happened when I accidently started to close it down a couple of days ago:

http://img501.imageshack.us/my.php?image=bild194nq1.png [imageshack.us]

Well, beat that ... Firefox 3 is apologized for somewhat sluggish performance.

Pithelmet for Safari are decent but you are supposed to pay for it and it's more often not updated for the latest version of Safari. Adblock plus and flashblock are free. Though I'd prefer to remove flash at all if only youtube and dsfanboy / gametrailers let me watch videos as VIDEOS.

Re:What astonishes me... (2, Funny)

aliquis (678370) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283655)

Was 4 windows and 40 tabs it seems, but no-one cares anyway :D

Re:What astonishes me... (5, Informative)

bdash (598142) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283985)

And what annoys me the most is that WHEN Safari crashes (which are within a day more often, ranging from an hour to 2 days.) all my tabs are lost for all eternity with all the information I was waiting to look at.

Select History -> Reopen All Windows From Last Session after relaunching Safari. If you'd like to see that mechanism improved, head over to http://bugreport.apple.com/ [apple.com] and provide your feedback.

Re:What astonishes me... (4, Insightful)

zappepcs (820751) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283735)

One of the great things that FF team did was to allow huge volumes of customization. It can be both a blessing and a curse, but allowing the add-ons and creating an environment where they could be created made FF much more than a web browser. For that, other browsers will constantly have to keep up. FF took bleeding edge and made it cool and functional. It takes a big stick to beat that. Being able to bolt on functions like ABP, foxmarks, FireFTP mean that much of my work is browser based now, and I'd not switch from FF without a great deal of effort by other broswers. I can switch back and forth from Linux to Windows and not really notice any difference in how I'm working.

Better than that, FF makes is so that joe public can experience the same functionality, and with little effort, realize that Ubuntu, CentOS, Fedora et al can be just as useful, if not more so, than MS products and OS. Most of the computer user's experience is a web browser these days. If that part works right, most people don't give a damn what OS is working underneath it. I've converted quite a few people, FF first, then OS, like falling dominos.

From my vantage point, FF has done far more than they are taking credit for. FAR MORE.

Re:What astonishes me... (0)

pha7boy (1242512) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283743)

honestly, since FF3 came out, I switched back to IE7. For whatever reason, FF3 crashes on me at least 3-4 times a day, so why use it. Too bad too, I really liked FF2.

Re:What astonishes me...FF 3-4 times/day crash? (2, Interesting)

JavaManJim (946878) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283827)

My FF 3.1 never crashes on XP SP2.
Could you provide specific sites that break?
I wonder about your break problems. Is there anything specific that goes wrong?
Is your virus scan up to date?
What is your OS?
Are you Bill Gates perhaps? (sorry for the thought)

Thanks and I hope FF goes better for you,
Jim

Re:What astonishes me...FF 3-4 times/day crash? (2, Interesting)

QuantumRiff (120817) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284065)

In Ubuntu 8.04, firefox will crash randomly on pages that have flash video with sound. There is a bug apparently between flash and pulseaudio. There have been a few patches that have been released, and it is better, but still sometimes crashes.

Re:What astonishes me...FF 3-4 times/day crash? (0, Offtopic)

JavaManJim (946878) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284113)

In reverse Polish,

Great Al Bundy quote. My life indeed. However in very high percentage of males in Dallas, I made a charming find last Sat. West Village is where they all gather.

Apologies but I think the issue is your nice Ubuntu 8.04 OS. Maybe FF 3.1 was not tested enough on that platform. PS I am green with envy, not because of today's jalapenos, but by your great OS.

Good luck,
Jim

Re:What astonishes me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283989)

FF 2.0.0.x is still supported until the end of the year, there's no reason you can't run that for now. By the time it is EOL'd there's a halfway decent chance your bug will have been fixed... and if not, there's always Opera.

Re:What astonishes me... (2, Interesting)

John Anonymous (73428) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284135)

Too bad too, I really liked FF2.

Awesome! If you really liked it there may be value in continuing to use Firefox. We urge you to try making a fresh FF3 profile; if no crashes are occur you can import your FF2 bookmarks, certificates, and so on, and your browsing experience will be better than ever!

If it still crashes with a fresh profile, you can either investigate further, or go back to Firefox 2. FF2 is much better than IE7, or else you wouldn't have been using FF2 instead of IE7 anyway, right?

It's funny... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283405)

I hated every alternative to IE I tried... until I tried Firefox.

Way to go FF! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283421)

Good work on forcing Apple to make their browser faster and more standards compliant than yours!

I can't wait to see what you do to make them continue to make browsers better than yours in the future, especially on mobile devices!

Re:Way to go FF! (0, Flamebait)

lowlymarine (1172723) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283489)

I assume you're talking about the Safari 4 Dev Preview? Because Safari 3.0.4 is neither faster than FF nor does it outscore FF 3.0.1 on ACID3. And while Safari 4 is indeed superior to FF3 in some ways, it's lack of important basic UI elements (middle-click-to-close on tabs comes to mind) still hampers it. Not to mention that, like OSX and Apple computers themselves, Apple does very little of the core work for Safari. They just take the open-source WebKit engine and slap their own UI over it, much as they just slap their own UI over BSD and their logos on Quanta and ASUSTek laptops and call them "the world's best operating system" and "the world's best computers" as if Apple deserves any of the credit.

Re:Way to go FF! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283545)

Yeah, you're right, because I can't tell the difference at all between a MacBook Pro with OS X and an ASUS laptop with Linux and KDE.

And here I thought that one of the points of open source software was to make solved problems (like core web browser libraries) share-able and reduce duplicated effort. I guess in fact its just so that when someone does use your work, other people can post on Slashdot about how thats stealing credit.

Re:Way to go FF! (2, Informative)

rauno (642994) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283583)

Are you sure that apple just slap their own GUI on WebKit?
http://trac.webkit.org/ [webkit.org]

Re:Way to go FF! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24284055)

If only there were a +1, "oh, snap!" mod.

Re:Way to go FF! (5, Funny)

beav007 (746004) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283597)

middle-click-to-close on tabs comes to mind

It's hard to tell between a left-click, middle-click, and right-click on a one button mouse...

Re:Way to go FF! (1)

aliquis (678370) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283721)

I don't see why one would want to use a mouse for such a task at all either. I mean, I have a perfectly good keyboard, it's got a good hundred or so of "buttons" and one can even press multiple of them at the same time to get even more combinations! Such as command-w.

Re:Way to go FF! (1)

strabes (1075839) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283763)

Wake up sonny, it's 2008!

Re:Way to go FF! (1)

beav007 (746004) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284023)

Macbooks still only ship with a 1 button trackpad.

Re:Way to go FF! (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24284109)

Macbooks still only ship with a 1 button trackpad.

Who needs 2 buttons?

Two fingers and a click gives you the secondary mouse button and dragging 2 fingers around the trackpad gives you scrolling (horizontal and vertical). 3 finger swipes gives you back and forward navigation as well.

2 button trackpads are so last year.

Re:Way to go FF! (4, Informative)

bdash (598142) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283947)

Apple does very little of the core work for Safari. They just take the open-source WebKit engine and slap their own UI over it

You are incredibly misinformed. A quick glance at recent WebKit changes [webkit.org] readily shows how blatantly false your claim is.

So.... (2, Interesting)

liquidpele (663430) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283425)

What he's saying is that competition feeds innovation. While not exactly a new idea, I'm glad that Firefox has been able to create competition in the once stagnant browser market though.

Re:So.... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283535)

It is fascinating the way browsers have evolved. From little free apps, to the dominance to Netscape, to the crushing anticompetitive dominance of IE to the reemergence of the firebird from the ashes of Netscape... coming back to put down the bloated, lagging malware known as IE.

Oh yeah. Then there's Apple and Konqueror doin' their own little thing. Along with Opera and iCab and Omni and all those folks who seem to never go away.

And what he's not saying... (4, Interesting)

msauve (701917) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283669)

is that Firefox has been driven (to a large extent) by Opera [opera.com] .

Credit where credit is due, please.

Re:And what he's not saying... (4, Informative)

roca (43122) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283921)

Opera, although it is excellent, has never had enough market share to look like a threat. Competition from Safari, and of course IE, is the major competitive driver for us.

Re:And what he's not saying... (0, Flamebait)

KillerBob (217953) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284067)

I was wondering when the Opera trolls would show up....

As with most things in computing, it's impossible to really say who came up with which idea. Take OS/X's core UI. Looks an awful lot like XFCE, to the point that a previous girlfriend thought that my XFCE-based desktop *was* OS/X until she looked closer. But then... they were both stealing some core elements from the CDE, which was originally developped by a coalition of Unix vendors including Sun, HP, and IBM. The thing is... elements of CDE were outright stolen from Microsoft Windows, which arguably was stolen from... MacOS. (I say "arguably", because none other than Bill Gates himself was part of the original development of System 1.0, back in 1982.) The thing being, of course, that they were both stealing from Xerox and the PARC, which in turn was stealing from IBM.

It's convoluted. There's not really *any* way to say who came up with which idea first. Opera is certainly a good product. I use their browser in place of Symbian on my cell phone. But at the same time, since it's so difficult to really pin down who came up with which innovations first, focus instead on who has the best product now. Besides... I seem to recall tabbed browsing addons for IE before Opera was even on the radar, for example... and tabbed browsing of things like filesystems and word processing documents is something that's been in computing since before there even was a WWW. So no. The folks at Opera didn't come up with the idea.

Re:And what he's not saying... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24284119)

Right... I'm sure he loses sleep every night worrying about what Opera and their chronically sub-1% market share are up to next.

They've been around more than twice as long as Firefox and have consistently failed to captivate (they had SIX YEARS in which to show the web and IE users that they were an answer to reigniting innovation, creativity and usability on the web, ffs) all but a few oddballs who have nothing better to do than bitch and moan about how unfair it is that the big guys don't even give them the time of day.

Perhaps if Opera and their community could put just half the effort they spend complaining and sniping into marketing and user experience initiatives, maybe they wouldn't be in the position they are.
Although I bet even that's doomed to mediocrity, most of those who would commit to such an undertaking have likely already abandoned Opera for more open, less "bash the other guys because we're bitter that they've surpassed us" communities like those surrounding WebKit and Firefox.

Opera had more than enough time; they failed, still fail and will likely continue to fail until it results in their death. So don't even bother with the "waah, Opera did it first" crap because the web simply didn't care then, doesn't care now and is moving on without you.

Re:So.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283733)

well something that isnt said is that if you kill off safari, IE and other things, there isnt the competition for firefox to stay number one. As long as there is competition *everyone* is trying to be #1 and they all innovate, as soon as there is only one real choice that innovation will die down, which is likely to cause a new competitor (or several dozen) to join the fray.

This is true for more than just browsers, and as pointed out, its not a new idea, but this aspect of it is one that many forget. Wishing complete destruction upon competition is only a good thing if you plan on releasing no further updates or if you are a consumer who wants no new features in whatever it is that you are using.

country of origin (1, Informative)

MechEMark (1328023) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283437)

Nothing of substance here, but, for the record, it's an Austrian site

Safari 3.1 (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283441)

Or maybe they did it because they were pushing javascript apps for the iPhone, and working on the javascript-based SproutCore frameworks and the associated MobileMe apps.

Not everything revolves around Firefox.

Re:Safari 3.1 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283659)

Shh, let him feel important. If he was interested in facts, he might have mentioned that mozilla was a bloated turd and firefox, the stripped down version they didn't approve of, prevented them from being an also ran.

I do like their functional enhancements (Array.forEach, etc) though.

Re:Safari 3.1 (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283771)

Nor does does everything revolve around the iPhone.

wow; Big pair on him. (5, Insightful)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283457)

Apple did not release Safari because of Firefox. After all, Firefox was on Apple. They released it because they wanted to be in control of their future. As it was, MS had announced that they were going to pull MSIE from them. What amazes me, is that Apple has not pushed OO to be on there. They would be smart to add a few coders to the project just to ensure that it can compete against Office on their platform.

Re:wow; Big pair on him. (1)

blueg3 (192743) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283491)

You'll notice he said Safari 3.1, not Safari in general.

Re:wow; Big pair on him. (2, Insightful)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283521)

And you think that Apple would quit release like MS does? Apple has shown over all to care about their software. I seriously doubt that Firefox 3 forced Safari to release a new one.

Re:wow; Big pair on him. (1)

blueg3 (192743) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283611)

It's assuredly complete coincidence that after Firefox 3 is released, Apple releases a Safari update that is, in large part, adding features introduced in Firefox 3.

Re:wow; Big pair on him. (1)

aliquis (678370) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283783)

Which, as have already been said, was because Apples solution for third part applications on the iPhone was using javascript and a faster solution would be better. Also Javascript performance have increased a hell of a lot in all the browsers lately, feel free to check numbers for IE and Opera as well. Javascript performance have gotten important with all the AJAX apps. But yes, feel free to claim all AJAX websites was made because Firefox 3.0 was released as well.

Re:wow; Big pair on him. (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283707)

I'm a big Apple fan, and often defend them on this site, but...

Apple is not immune from competitive pressure. They are only going to do as much as they have to to stay ahead (or at least competitive). If the browser market was stagnant, they would pull a MS and not really do very much to Safari.

Apple has plenty of neglected nooks and crannies. It took YEARS to get a decent Finder in OSX, for instance.

Re:wow; Big pair on him. (1)

DarkFencer (260473) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283499)

They aren't saying Apple released Safari because of Firefox. They are saying that Apple released their most recent Safari version (3.1) because of Firefox 3. Whether that is true or not I can't say but it is not implausible.

Re:wow; Big pair on him. (4, Funny)

bdash (598142) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283959)

Apple released Safari 3.1 as a reaction to Mozilla releasing Firefox 3 nearly three months later? That's a rather creative way to spin things.

Re:wow; Big pair on him. (1)

davester666 (731373) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283529)

No. The sole reason for Safari's existence and being updated is to combat Mozilla and Firefox on MacOS X. Otherwise, Firefox would look and work like it did 5 years ago, with great support for Web standards, but terrible usability. Hell, the Firefox prefs on MacOS X looks damn similar to the preferences layout in Safari, or is FireFox also claiming to be driving UI standards on MacOS X as well...

Re:wow; Big pair on him. (2, Informative)

ben there... (946946) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283999)

Otherwise, Firefox would look and work like it did 5 years ago, with great support for Web standards, but terrible usability.

Yes [flexbeta.net] , OMG [flexbeta.net] so [mozillazine.org] unusable! [mozillazine.org]

I'm guessing you didn't use Firebird 5 years ago.

Hell, the Firefox prefs on MacOS X looks damn similar to the preferences layout in Safari, or is FireFox also claiming to be driving UI standards on MacOS X as well...

It looks better now, and does match the style of System Preferences panes of OS X. But it's actually less usable to me in that they moved connection settings (the only setting I ever have to change, to use proxies) off the main "tab". Fortunately it remembers the last tab you had open, so only a minor hindrance.

Re:wow; Big pair on him. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283569)

They didn't release Safari initially because of Firefox, but they have made it better, faster, more reliable... because of Firefox... I think that is the point. I don't think Firefox has made anybody stand up and say "I should make something" but it has pushed those that already make something, to make it better or be left in the dust...

Re:wow; Big pair on him. (5, Insightful)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283691)

What amazes me, is that Apple has not pushed OO to be on there. They would be smart to add a few coders to the project just to ensure that it can compete against Office on their platform.

Apple has Pages, Keynote, and Numbers (I pay for them rather than use OO.). Oh, and Microsoft Office. Apple's interest in open source is more of the system/library part, not the front end user experience.

Re:wow; Big pair on him. (0)

aliquis (678370) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283863)

Considering how much vendor lockin Apple likes to push I wouldn't say they are interested in open source system or libraries either unless it benefits them a lot. The system are most probably based on open source software because MacOS was such old crap and their new OS project failed to deliver so they needed something better without all the work and well, with the right license it was just there to grap.

Same for the browser, much easier to start of with the things the KDE-people had already done instead of starting all over. And the half-forked situation which existed between webkit and khtml kind of tells a story about how much they care about open source aswell (sure both camps need to try to work together for it to work so of course it was probably not only Apples fault.)

Example of closed stuff are the whole OS, their machines, I won't count AAC since it was an improved codec, the file formats used for iWork (If they change to ODF if possible then it's fine), data libraries for iPhoto, Aperture, iTunes, Garageband, ...

So on so on. That part of Apple is a major PITA, too bad some of the software isn't there yet on the open source platforms because then I wouldn't use an Apple product.

Re:wow; Big pair on him. (3, Insightful)

aliquis (678370) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283767)

Maybe because Apple would never release a product with a user interface even remotely close to anything office classic?

And I'm glad they don't. What I can't understand is why Staroffice/OpenOffice tried so hard to copy something so bad.

Re:wow; Big pair on him. (1)

Junior J. Junior III (192702) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283969)

You've got things a bit backwards. Safari came out, and then Microsoft decided to pull IE, because Macs had a built-in browser now. Firefox came along sometime later. Netscape and Mozilla were around for the early years of OS X, and Firefox didn't hit 1.0 until 2004, and wasn't fully OS X native (people were using Camino on OS X for a fair time after the 1.0 release, if I'm not mistaken, in order to enjoy a fully-native experience on OS X.)

and in other news ... (-1, Offtopic)

yorkshiredale (1148021) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283461)

GNU/Linux claims 'SCO Unix is the best release we ever did'

One thing I'm sure of ... (1)

krkhan (1071096) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283469)

... is that now developers of every other browser expect a cake from the IE team on their major releases. Sadness.

competition breeds improvement (5, Funny)

jollyreaper (513215) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283487)

I always maintained that Win2K was such a good OS specifically because of the competition Microsoft was getting from open source, they didn't want to be caught napping and wake up to find Linux as a good desktop solution. This theory kind of fell apart with Vista, I have no idea what that steaming pile is in response to.

Re:competition breeds improvement (4, Insightful)

RobertM1968 (951074) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283559)

You are indeed correct - but there was more to it than that. Keep in mind that at the time they put Win2K into the planning stages, OS/2 had the server market (due to all the vertical market businesses that IBM catered to). MS needed something that competed, and was decent.

Of course, the other added factor was continually breaking and changing networking implementations and such to ensure that since "your" workstations (mostly) ran Windows, the server had to as well.

Before that, you could manage a Windows domain from OS/2 simply by drag-n-drop. Since MS couldnt beat that (and still doesnt have anything remotely close), they had to make another release (both for competitive reasons and to break compatibility with LanMan).

The key thing (competition) is what died in those areas... fortunately in the browser market, MS can no longer leverage their monopoly to create a similar situation, leaving everyone having to either play catch-up to stay in the game or fighting to stay ahead. We all benefit...

Don't forget! (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284017)

Microsoft said for years that they would partner with IBM and fully support OS/2. Then they reneged at the last minute and left OS/2 to rot.

Which is pretty much what they did with all the industry "standards", too... lied about it long enough to bury it.

I DO NOT LIKE companies that routinely lie to their customers.

Re:competition breeds improvement (1)

CHJacobsen (1183809) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283601)

This theory kind of fell apart with Vista, I have no idea what that steaming pile is in response to.

OS X.

They just remodeled it slightly to avoid lawsuits.

Enter: Bloatware

Re:competition breeds improvement (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283737)

People complained the same thing about XP when it came out. Now they won't get off of it. Same will happen next time around too, people get into their comfort zones and when the game changes there is a lot of hate.

On my system I run vista ultimate x64 and it runs flawlessly with better compatability than my xp system. Of course I don't run the full aero, the transparency effects were actually kinda hard on my eyes.

Re:competition breeds improvement (1)

aliquis (678370) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283907)

Maybe they took a look at the competition, saw that cool sudo dialogue box and how Linux handled drivers and said, "WE CAN DO THAT TO!!"

And no, i386 vs Amd64 wasn't free of troubles in the Linux distributions or BSDs either.

Safari not trailing Firefox (4, Informative)

MobyTurbo (537363) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283503)

Safari is not trailing Firefox as it is being developed in all ways, especially JavaScript performance. I actually prefer to use Firefox 3 on the Mac (much better array of plug-ins, and better security), but the latest WebKit nightlies, on http://www.webkit.org/ [webkit.org] since the implementation of Squirelfish (see blog there) are quite a bit faster in JavaScript performance than Firefox. If anything, Firefox is going to have some catching up to do in that department.

Re:Safari not trailing Firefox (2, Informative)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283705)

Firefox will eventually use tamarin, which should be on par with Squirelfish.

Re:Safari not trailing Firefox (3, Insightful)

MobyTurbo (537363) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283795)

Firefox will eventually use tamarin, which should be on par with Squirelfish.

Yes, but Squirelfish was developed first. Hence proving my point, Firefox is not the only leader in innovation; as this "evangelist" seems to be implying.

Re:Safari not trailing Firefox (4, Insightful)

BZ (40346) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283889)

I suggest taking a look at the commit history of both Gecko and Webkit in the last year or so where JS perf is concerned.

You'll find that they've basically been pushing each other, in almost perfect alternation: one checks in a patch that makes it faster, the other responds with changes that make it faster, etc.

Seriously, go read the checkin logs.

Re:Safari not trailing Firefox (1)

MobyTurbo (537363) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284079)

I suggest taking a look at the commit history of both Gecko and Webkit in the last year or so where JS perf is concerned.

You'll find that they've basically been pushing each other, in almost perfect alternation: one checks in a patch that makes it faster, the other responds with changes that make it faster, etc.

Seriously, go read the checkin logs.

The current Firefox nightlies are significantly slower at JavaScript, and have less standards compliance, than WebKit nightlies. That's what I'm going by. I don't need to read checkin logs to see that Squirelfish is fast and gets good benchmarks according to both partial and impartial tests.

Firefox's main advantages as it now stands are security, and the plug-in ecosystem; though it's performance and standards compliance are nothing to sneeze at; and are liable to improve, not because it is the engine that drives all browser innovation, but because it is engaged in a friendly competition with WebKit. If you have benchmarks that say otherwise, please post them. Considering that I like Firefox enough to have it as my main browser in three operating systems, rather than Safari or Konqueror, I wouldn't mind being proven wrong. :-)

Re:Safari not trailing Firefox (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283911)

Yes, but Squirelfish was developed first. Hence proving my point, Firefox is not the only leader in innovation; as this "evangelist" seems to be implying.

Tamarin is the engine behind AS in Flash and has been targeted for integration with SpiderMonkey for more than a year now. So I don't see how exactly you can consider SquirelFish to be first or even innovative since it's just performance improvements.

Re:Safari not trailing Firefox (1)

bdash (598142) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284005)

You're right, Tamarin has been targeted for integration with SpiderMonkey for more than a year now. And that *still* remains its current state.

Re:Safari not trailing Firefox (1)

MobyTurbo (537363) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284025)

Yes, but Squirelfish was developed first. Hence proving my point, Firefox is not the only leader in innovation; as this "evangelist" seems to be implying.

Tamarin is the engine behind AS in Flash and has been targeted for integration with SpiderMonkey for more than a year now. So I don't see how exactly you can consider SquirelFish to be first or even innovative since it's just performance improvements.

Tamarin has been in the pipeline, like you said, for more than a year now; without even an alpha test or nightly including it. The article is about the browser scene as it stands now, and the fact is, that Firefox is not the "engine that drives (all) innovation" but in fact, along with WebKit (which powers Konqueror and Safari), and perhaps some other projects, is one of more than one browser that are improving web standards compliance and browser performance.

If it weren't for Safari's lousy security record on the Mac, I'd actually consider using it, along with the latest WebKit, rather than Firefox - the latest WebKit's speed and standards compliance are better, not worse, than Firefox. Plus it supports nice features that native Cocoa apps provide.

Now, Internet Explorer, on the other hand, I don't see how it's innovating at all. It truly is playing a game of catch-up at best.

Opera (5, Funny)

Rui del-Negro (531098) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283549)

And Opera is feeling so pressured by Firefox that it is systematically forced to copy Firefox's features months and even years before Firefox releases them... ^_^

Re:Opera (5, Funny)

smussman (1160103) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283577)

And they won't even tell us how they do the time travel thing ... that's why open source is so much better.

Re:Opera (4, Insightful)

enoz (1181117) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283685)

Except Opera lagged behind with the most significant feature: being free.

According to the wiki timeline it wasn't until around 2000 when a 'free' version became available (supported by inbuilt ads), and then as recent as 2005 when finally the ads were removed.

Re:Opera (1)

Hal_Porter (817932) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284031)

Except Opera lagged behind with the most significant feature: being free.

According to the wiki timeline it wasn't until around 2000 when a 'free' version became available (supported by inbuilt ads), and then as recent as 2005 when finally the ads were removed.

Yeah and Porsches lag behind Trabbis in the most significant feature : being cheap.

Re:Opera (1, Insightful)

Hemogoblin (982564) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284043)

According to the wiki timeline it wasn't until around 2000 when a 'free' version became available

...and this stops you from using it now, why?

Re:Opera (0, Troll)

Omnifarious (11933) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284051)

AFAIK, it still isn't free as in speech, just as in beer. I can do without that kind of free.

Re:Opera (3, Interesting)

RAMMS+EIN (578166) | more than 6 years ago | (#24284103)

Before the ad-supported Opera, however, people just used the evaluation version.

Money was never what stopped Opera's adoption.

What did stop its adoption is an interesting question, though. It has been a great browser for as long as I can remember - which I think goes back to version 3.something. I used it to test my websites, because Opera was much more picky and standards-compliant than the others. I also used it for my own browsing, because Opera was faster and offered a slew of useful features that other browsers lacked (tons of keyboard shortcuts and tabs being the main ones). Yet, I have never seen Opera at far above 1% in global browser market share stats.

Part of it is undoubtedly inertia. A lot of people will just use what comes with their system, which is probably some version of Internet Explorer or Safari, and perhaps Firefox (and, back in the day, Netscape). Part of it may also be explained by the multitude of websites that have been broken in ways that made them not work with Opera. If you use a lot of such websites, having to switch browsers constantly quickly gets old.

Myself, I stopped using Opera because of stability issues on Linux. Those might have been resolved now, but, nowadays, I run only open-source software on my main system. I am not about to make an exception for Opera; I am satisfied with Konqueror.

Meh? (1)

gamanimatron (1327245) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283575)

This is all well and good, but... does it really mean anything? I mean, "Oooo, look, we write software so good that Microsoft has to scramble to keep up" seems like a questionable metric to me. I'd rather hear something like, "We just came up with something so cool you'll forget not to drool when we let you peek at the specs."

Not to knock FF3 - I like faster JS as much as the next guy, but, er, awesomebar?

Re:Meh? (1)

FlyingBishop (1293238) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283635)

The awesome bar is how I access the web. I hardly ever touch my bookmarks anymore. It was a little slow, but I turned it down to three maximum suggestions, and I haven't had any trouble since.

Should be: Effect of Opera on Firefox (4, Funny)

lisany (700361) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283581)

What will Firefox copy next? (what? troll?)

Re:Should be: Effect of Opera on Firefox (1)

Tubal-Cain (1289912) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283837)

Hopefully not the UI. I try to like it, but I find the cookie handling and the flash control awkward (true, FF needs a addon for the flash, but it's still easier), and the tabs over the address bar can't (as far as I can tell) can't be moved down under it.

Montrosity (1)

P51mus (1266460) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283585)

Agh! That website is a horrible javascript laden monstrosity!

Nothing shows up at all with noscript blocking the site, and when I allow the site the article takes up less than 1/3rd of the screen space!

I want to know what sort of horrible decisions are behind this site, and whether they came from management or the web developer themself. Or both.

Re:Montrosity (1)

P51mus (1266460) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283781)

......and I mispelled my post title. I am so ashamed of myself.

Re:Montrosity (1)

RealityThreek (534082) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283819)

Agh! That website is a horrible javascript laden monstrosity!

And Firefox 3.0 renders it with pure bruteforce Javascript rendering power.

It Cuts Both Ways (5, Interesting)

magixman (883752) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283629)

While Firefox may have inspired the release of IE 7 and pushed Apple to jump into the fray with a Windows release of Safari, it is also true that FF 2 was not all that it should have been and just maybe IE 7 and Safari pushed Mozilla hard enough to really ace FF 3 which it seems that they have done.

As a software developer who once loathed the idea of having to code for multiple browsers, I have now accepted that there will be differences and have learned to deal with it and promise to stop whining.

I applaud the browser race and hope that they continue to leapfrog each other for a long time to come.

Ow, my commas (4, Funny)

Rinisari (521266) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283709)

I never knew, that German, was quite so, comma-happy.

Re:Ow, my commas (1)

satoshi1 (794000) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283849)

From my experience it generally isn't so much, it's probably a bad translation that stuck so much punctuation in there.

Re:Ow, my commas (1)

Main Gauche (881147) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283855)

Not only him, but most of the others too.

Re:Ow, my commas (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283859)

All I know is that I must be some kind of fucking genius, because I've never taken a German class in my life, and I understood it just fine.

Re:Ow, my commas (1)

snl2587 (1177409) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283875)

Captain Kirk? Is that you?

Re:Ow, my commas (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24283881)

I guess the grammar nazis left the country when they weren't allowed to cook jews anymore.

With all the plugins and extensions ... (2, Funny)

krkhan (1071096) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283807)

... Firefox, Opera, IE and Safari all are great networking operating systems. They just lack good browsers.

ouch. (1)

Arathon (1002016) | more than 6 years ago | (#24283897)

Wow. If I read that bit about JavaScript right, he's really not pulling any punches. They developed Safari 3.1 so that Firefox's JavaScript would be twice as fast?

That does kinda crack me up. Mozilla has always seemed to be fairly mild in their attacks on other browsers. Until now?

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