Tom Sucks

Everything sucks, but we can make it suck less

Firefox 3: A Safari User’s Review, reviewed June 3, 2008

Filed under: Mozilla,Uncategorized — Tom @ 1:42 pm
Tags: ,

I’m sometimes ashamed to admit that I subscribe to the RSS feed for MacApper. Originally, they highlighted some neat new mac apps. Now they highlight whatever they’re advertising. I could be missing something, sure, but if a free alternative to a product exists you surely won’t find them mentioning that.

Onto the ignorance. I just picked up Firefox 3: A Safari User’s Review by Peter Craddock. He obviously notices the huge back button, and while I thought most mac users read Daring Fireball (and thus would have caught his review, which mentions the small toolbar buttons fix. Peter thinks this is just a ‘problem’ and that it cannot be fixed.

Next he notices the awesomebar, but he really doesn’t. It’s like he just started Firefox 3, let it import his Firefox 2 data, and then wrote a review based upon cursory glances. He calls it “the “recent use & favourites” drop-down menu”, but doesn’t even notice it’s built in search capabilities (it will search your recent history, so if you type ‘dar’ and you went to daring fireball recently, it’ll be ‘suggested’, there’s a demo video at the BBC).

On the find bar, which he finds disconcerting, is that it doesn’t work exactly like Safari. I actually agree, I wouldn’t mind some functionality to do this, but then again, I wouldn’t want it to work exactly like Internet Explorer for Windows users. I looked deeper into this expecting that there simply HAD to be a bug asking for Safari 3 (I don’t think this was in Safari 2) type functionality, so I searched for ALL find bar bugs on mac and found nothing even close. So Peter: feel free to file a request for enhancement bug. I filled out some of the boxes for you. (If you have to sign up first, just come back and click my link, it SHOULD work. Let me know the bug number in the comments when you create it!)

I don’t have issues with much of the other stuff except the hatred for Larry UI. It’s for EV, is a major benefit for phishing protection, etc. I guess they could put the ‘welcome’ page on a https site for example purposes. But, go to, and you’ll see the certificate issuer and verification that it’s really paypal. Good stuff.

(I ended up taking too long to get this posted, I was going to post it almost immediately after the post I’m reviewing, but had trouble finding the info on he Larry UI. I hate not citing, so I saved a draft then never came back to it. Sorry 😦 )


4 Responses to “Firefox 3: A Safari User’s Review, reviewed”

  1. Peter Says:

    Hi Tom,

    I was pleasantly surprised to find a review on my review. What with the criticism and approval that came forth in the MacApper comments, it’s good to read a larger response.

    Indeed, I do not follow Daring Fireball (way too much information for my liking).

    I would like to point out a couple of things you “misinterpreted”.
    First of all, I didn’t mention the awesomebar’s capabilities (didn’t know the name), to the review’s loss, but did notice it.
    Also, regarding the find toolbar, I never stated it was a bad thing. After all, it does have more features, and if I could see them in Safari, I’d be very happy indeed.

    Regarding the “Larry UI”, it is indeed a great feature, but if you welcome users on a page that isn’t secure, how will a user ever find this feature interesting? If he/she can’t see the effects described by the welcome page, he/she will more easily forget the feature even exists.

    On that note, I made some other mistakes in my review. Hopefully, they won’t be made again in my second post on MacApper.

  2. Rob C Says:

    I am a safari user and web developer. I currently dislike FF3 seems much slower. Real slow when it comes to javascript. And in an age where javascript is being used everywhere it kind of cripples the browser.

  3. Tom Sucks Says:

    Rob: It can slow down on certain complex webpages, but I’ve only noticed one. Like Webkit, Mozilla does have a bug reporting system. Not using it is not helping, you are free to use Safari as your main browser and still try to get Firefox bugs fixed, because as a web developer you would benefit from these fixes.

  4. Mister F Says:

    I don’t know Mr. Craddock, nor of his previous writings. And, after reading the macapper comments, I’m aware of his claim that this work was pro bono.

    That said, it was a crappy piece. And I mean ‘crappy’ in its most technical sense: it stinks. I found nothing about it worth the time I spent, in the effort – not the information presented, nor the style of criticism, nor his personal experience and/or viewpoint. Nor even the composition, tho’ I must admit _that_ was merely pedestrian rather then awful.

    But slogging though his piece and the seemingly endless page of (often sophomoric) responses did me some good. No kidding. It helped to congeal some thoughts I’d been kicking around, on the differences between Apple and PC devotees, using Firefox as the baseline construct. Here’s the most extreme example; tell me what you think.:

    A PC guy will complain that FF slows down or freezes at random times, for no apparent reason. He suspects this is due to poor resource-allocation. For example, Task Manager shows that RAM usage spiked the moment he opened tab #27. While downloading the full DVD rip of Blade Runner Director’s Cut. And compiling a new Linux kernel. Plus burning two dual-layer music CDs. He is quite vocal about this ‘critical flaw’ and Firefox’s lack of robustness, wondering how it slipped through beta.

    An Apple guy will complain that Firefox doesn’t render pages so beautifully as his faithful Safari. Worse, Firefox’s UI strikes him as abhorrent, seen against the rest of his desktop. For example, two of the button graphics are blurry and slightly assymetrical, when your Aeron is set to full recline so as to view your 30″ Cinema Display from precisely 19.5-23.5 degrees off-axis. But only after color correction. Under certified, full-spectrum fluorescent lights. During an eclipse.

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