Sunday, May 22, 2011

Firefox 5 beta

There isn't much new in this release.
There is the new channel switcher and better support for CSS animations, but none of the hoped-for features are yet included. This is in contrast to the nightly build, where one other change has occurred: the URL bar now acts like Internet Explorer 8's, graying out everything but the actual domain name.
Chances are, you won't notice any of the differences, as the channel switcher effectively works in the background (only people who want to change channels regularly will be affected. Personally, I have the Nightly, Aurora, Beta, and Release versions installed separately). One problem that I have with the channel switcher is that there is no way to switch to the nightly builds from the channel switcher, and you can't switch from the Nightly to any other channel. While this may not seem a big deal, it can make a difference when testing (one of these days, I'm going to have time to participate in one of Mozilla's bugdays, but that may be a while) since each confirmed bug in Aurora is supposed to be checked in the Nightly build.


  1. Why are you still using Firefox is my question? I understand the features you enjoy, however you are over complicating internet browsing. Most (if not all) of the things you enjoy from Firefox can be enjoyed off of you precious Gecko layout engine. KHTML/WebKit is my personal favorite, Google Chrome is about as close to bug-free as possible. Google has released 12 builds in less time than Mozilla could make 2 releases. In my opinion it may be time to give up your precious Mozilla fandom.

  2. The primary reason why I use Firefox is that it is not run by a multi-billion dollar company and it runs on all of my operating systems (I can't use chrome easily on Ubuntu-I have to install Chromium instead, but it is essentially the same thing).

    While Mozilla did release two new releases in the same amount of time that Google released twelve (debatable-some of the versions are currently in the testing phase) new releases, the only differences in the new features offered by either browser are in HTML5 support, etc., and both browsers have excellent HTML5 support (HTML5 is not yet a finished standard).
    After Chrome's initial release, its many releases were essentially equivalent to Firefox's two releases. The only real difference between the two browsers is the underlying technology, the main backer of the browser, and the user interface. Other than that, they have primarily the same features.
    I will admit that Chrome has an advantage over Firefox in that it has smaller releases every 3 months, but this is changing.
    My only hope is that Firefox has a "long-term support" release for environments where the IT do not want to change browser versions more often than once or twice a year, but certainly not three times a year or more.

    I hope that this elongated response answers your question.