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Firefox – why change browsers? June 16, 2005

Posted by Leita in Browsers, Internet.

I started using Firefox a while back at the prompting of web gurus fighting the good fight for standards-compliant code. It’s just a better browser and it didn’t take me long to rack up the reasons why. A sample can be found at Eric Meyer’s site. Take a look at this page in Internet Explorer then in Firefox. Scroll a bit, play around and see a sample of what I.E. users have been missing. I.E. users don’t see what’s happening in the background … what the internet could be. Meyer’s site is just one example, an average user may not understand what he’s saying, but the images tell the story clearly. Honestly, at first I didn’t notice a huge difference between how the two browsers rendered most pages. Thanks to coders who pay close attention to standards compliance, and the clients willing to pay for the thoughtful code, the good sites look similar. If that’s not enough reason to switch, try those tabs. No more opening six separate windows when poking ’round the ‘net; they’re all right there! Woohoo! After playing with those, I clicked the big click and designated Firefox as my default browser. A first for me, I didn’t even do that with Netscape back in ’97. (Note: back then I was a Netscape convert. It was my favorite browser until one of the early upgrades released was so buggy I couldn’t uninstall it fast enough. Call me picky and unforgiving, but I didn’t go back until recently. It’s a decent browser, even has those yummy tabs, but too hungry for space I do not care to share.) I’ll say it again, if you’re using I.E., get Firefox. It’s worth every wee meg it takes up. While you’re at it, dump Outlook and get Thunderbird, too. Since employing those two programs, the amount of malware that accumulates on my computer has dropped by over 80% daily, from an average of 50-70 to about 6. That’s every day. That’s huge. Now, the caveat: since most Windows users click on the big blue E that comes loaded on their computer and often aren’t aware of what else is out there, it seemed as though I was just adding hours to my browser testing. Criminy, one more browser to putter with, it almost made me revert back to Flash sites and damn the search engine optimization. I won’t even go into Opera, which was touted at “the” browser to have a few years ago. It wasn’t and I don’t have it on my computer even for testing. I’m being unfair building sites that may or may not look decent in Opera, but if they can’t keep up, screw ’em. I suppose I’m not a standards-compliant militant, but I do pay attention to I.E. users since they still are the vast majority. Now I pay attention to Firefox because the folks who use it care enough to make the extra effort worth it. One last link before I go: give Newt a click with I.E. and Firefox. I sent this one to a client yesterday and even though he’s a mac boy, he was impressed. Now, do what Eric says and go do the right thing.



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