Which browser? Why?

Discussion in 'OT Technology' started by Mudd, Jan 16, 2004.

  1. Mudd

    Mudd New Member

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    I've been using Opera (v 7.23 now), and IE in a pinch. Now with the new Firebird and Mozilla coming out, I dunno if I should switch. Any FACT-BASED opinions (not stupid "IE suxx0rz" crap). I was also looking into Avant.

    I like the tabbed browsing that Opera gives me. It always loads faster than IE, and seems to look as good (if not better). I also like the transfers (downloads) section that Opera gives me. I don't like the fact that most movies won't play in my browser.

    What do you think?
     
  2. x6ftundx

    x6ftundx New Member

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    It sounds stupid but I tried almost every browser I could find and I finally went back to IE. The reason is simply that most websites are designed for IE. I have never had a page look funnywith it. I have a had a lot of issues with websites and MOZ, Netscape and Opera.
     
  3. 5Gen_Prelude

    5Gen_Prelude There might not be an "I" in the word "Team", but

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    IE, cuz I'm too fucking lazy
     
  4. shanker

    shanker unemployed

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    myIE2 is kinda nice..


    but I stull use Opera...and fucking love it
     
  5. Astro

    Astro Code Monkey

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    You're fueling the IE problem - web developers keep coding for IE when they're not paying attention to standards.

    Mudd: You mentioned you used Opera. Check out Firebird. I think you'll enjoy it since its rather similar to Opera (tabbed browsing and pretty fast).

    Reasons to switch AWAY from IE to something else:

    ActiveX = lack of security
    Bugs (security related usually)
    Crappy CSS support
    does not follow W3C standards for HTML, CSS, JS, etc
    Crappy PNG support

    Reasons to check out Mozilla/Firebird:

    Very good HTML, CSS, JS, and other support (note: its not perfect, but does render pages much better than IE ever can - rsbauer.com = good example)
    popup and image blocking, if desired
    awesome awesome collection of plugins available for doing anything (blogging to web dev) see mozdev.org
    Cross platform support AND the pages actually look the same on PC, Mac, and Linux
    No ActiveX so you don't risk funky stuff getting installed
    Very actively updated. Major releases are out every 3 or so months.
    good PNG support
    about:config (type it in the URL and configure EVERY option available - swap _: with colon)

    Check out Browser Wars II (evolt.org)

    For web dev, you've got to test in all the browsers. But for my everyday browsing needs, I use Mozilla. I should use Firebird more often but I don't. Mozilla v1.6 has a strange bug with server authentication and for each page request, Mozilla wants authentication again. Mozilla v1.5 doesn't have this problem (just uninstalled v1.6 today to go back to v1.5).
     
  6. Rob

    Rob OT Supporter

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    I use IE because it works for me.
     
  7. Mugatu

    Mugatu Ask me about market research. OT Supporter

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    I usually use IE but I've been trying to change so I have mozilla and firebird installed and I try to force myself to use those.

    PS. a new version of mozilla just came out today if anyone is interested :)
     
  8. 01000101

    01000101 New Member

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    i love firebird, it loads the program itself in no time flat (as compared to mozilla) but i do occasionally have to load a page in ie. i have them both where i can get to them easily, so its no problem.

    that, and i get -zero- popups, even hitting sites of ill repute =)
     
  9. DatacomGuy

    DatacomGuy is moving to Canada

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    Here we go again.

    IE6.
     
  10. Nocera

    Nocera ...

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    Never came to a page that didn't load correctly in IE so of course that is what I use.
     
  11. Astro

    Astro Code Monkey

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    I was waiting for a response like this!!

    Check out http://www.rsbauer.com

    Notice in IE the page title "News, Info, and Whereabouts" in IE is aligned to the top of the box?

    Fire up another browser (I'm comfy in saying any graphical browser besides IE). Look where the title placement is now at. It should be in the center.

    Look at the code long enough and you'll find a CSS style of "vertical-align:middle" specified for the H1 tag. What the hell is IE doing?

    Take a step back and then relook at rsbauer.com.

    Because of this simple CSS issue, does this mean IE renders all sites properly? Or did I put this site together incorrectly? But how could I have put it together incorrectly if the CSS used has been standardized and cross-checked with CSS validators and other browsers?

    This is an uber-minor issue which is why I've left the CSS code the way it is. But it seems IE users blanket statement say, "oh, every site I go to works great in IE".

    Here's another one that absolutely fails in IE in so many ways:

    http://www.mozilla.org/start/1.0/demos/eagle-sun.html

    In IE, you'll first notice that there's a TERRIBLE gray background boxed around 4 images. Thats because IE can't handle PNGs correctly (the gray areas are transparent). You'll also notice you can't drag the bird around. IE has funky DHTML support. Also related to PNG is the alpha transparency, but IE can't even do regular transparency.

    I challenge ANY IE person to come up with some sites that DO NOT render properly in non-IE browsers (ones that check for IE and stop you if you're not using IE do not count - those developers didn't have enough time to learn how to develop cross-browser sites).
     
  12. Nocera

    Nocera ...

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    Astro... Those examples are seriously laughable :o I'm sorry.

    My definition of "load correctly" is pretty simple: does it look right? I would have never noticed any vertical alignment issues on your site. The problem with your align is the whole DIV within a DIV scenario. It is quite well known. And your second example from Mozilla's site.... I've never come across a site that needed that specific PNG support (and my work requires me to do an exorbitant amount of Internet browsing on new, unique sites everyday). Overall, I'm not impressed with your examples.

    You can bitch at the designers all you want... But according to my site statistics at work, IE users account for 93-95% of all visitors. And most of the other visitors are just search engine spiders. This is for a simple corporate website with no MS ties. It averages ~400-500 unique visitors per day. So you can design for cross-browser compatibility all you want but... It's going to take a better argument for me to switch.
     
  13. Astro

    Astro Code Monkey

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    This should be the goal for any web developer with any browser and any web site. The trick is each browser has its own interpretation of a site and renders it as such.

    And IE still can't handle it? This isn't CSS rocket science.

    Its not specific support. It is JUST PNG SUPPORT! Nothing more. Nothing less.

    The reason you don't see more PNG enabled sites is because of your the number of people glued to IE (what - 93-95%?). So PNG is going to look like crap for 93-95% of the folks out there so why spend development time to use PNG? Catch-22. Here's the petition.

    So lets pick on some trivial little things between just Mozilla/Firebird and IE.

    View Source - color coded in Moz, but not in IE. Source in Mozilla now shows the line and column of the cursor position in the status bar.

    JavaScript Console - Moz keeps a log + gives you English error with line numbers and a snippet of the JavaScript pointing to the error + click on error and will take you to the line of JS code. IE gives you a popup dialog with a line number and sometimes a helpful error.

    JavaScript debugger built in with Moz. Not available in IE. This ends up adding weight to Moz and depending on the kind of user you are, this could be a positive or a negative.

    DOM (or Document Object Model) Inspector. View and navigate the document's objects and properties. Only handy if you're web developing. Not available in IE.

    Active plugin development for Moz/Firebird: http://www.mozdev.org
    What's available:
    - View HTTP headers coming to and from the browser (liveHttpHeaders)
    - Quick browser config tweaking (Preferences toolbar)
    - Web site development tools (PNH toolbar)
    - + more

    3 different download managers available from within Moz/Firebird depending on your style and needs.

    Trick bookmarks in Moz/Firebird. Not available in IE.

    Form manager available in Moz/Firebird to allow you to specify specifically which sites you'll allow to remember form data. IE just remembers form data or it doesn't.

    Image manager in Moz/Firebird to manage the display of images (great way to block banner ads and such). Not available in IE.

    Popup manager in Moz/Firebird. Not natively available in IE (yet - heard rumors the next release of IE may include popup blocking).

    Password manager to manage stored passwords. Both browsers have this feature. IE does not allow you to specify the specific sites to manage.

    Moz/Firebird have about:config - allows complete control over every variable in Moz/Firebird.

    Themes support (although this is just eye candy). At least in Moz/Firebird, you do have the option to install an IE styled theme.

    Tabbed browsing in Moz/Firebird. Not natively supported in IE. Moz/Firebird also can bookmark several tabs and have several tabs open up upon clicking a bookmark ("Save a window of tabs as a group bookmark by going to Bookmarks | File Bookmark and checking ‘File as group’ – when you go to the bookmark, all the tabs will open at once.").

    Page Info dialog avialable in Moz/Firebird. IE only has page properties. Moz/Firebird provides a lot more info such as: form variables and data used on a page, links in the page, media used, headers sent, security, and privacy.

    Moz/Firebird have profiles allowing multiple users to save their own browser settings and data (such as bookmarks, form data, privacy settings, etc). Not available directly in IE.

    Moz/Firebird available and supported on more than one platform and pages render the same across these platforms (not the case for IE PC and IE Mac and IE Mac no longer is supported).
     
  14. Astro

    Astro Code Monkey

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  15. CompiledMonkey

    CompiledMonkey New Member

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    I've tried most all of them and have always come back to IE. There is no real reason, but I just more comfortable using it compared to the others. When I'm doing web work, I do use Mozilla, Firebird and IE.
     
  16. Zen

    Zen Guest

    I <3 Mozilla Firebird. Open source, secure, full-featured, and buzzword-compliant. :cool:
     
  17. 5Gen_Prelude

    5Gen_Prelude There might not be an "I" in the word "Team", but

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    Astro: Fight the man, Brotha!

    :rofl:

    I used to think like you, and although you are technically right, I just stopped trying to fight MS and their conventions.
     
  18. Zourn

    Zourn 16-bit Ninja OT Supporter

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    My Reasons for using Mozilla Firebird:

    -Tabbed Browsing - Once you get used to it, you can't live without it.
    -Cross-Platform - Use the same browser with the same options whether i'I'm on a Windows, Linux, or (god-forbid) a Mac.
    -Built-In Pop-up Blocker
    -Extensions - Easy-to-use and install plug-ins for added versatility.
    -Security - Don't have to worry about adware/spyware/browser-jackers.
     
  19. Nocera

    Nocera ...

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    I really don't think you understood what I was saying.....

    It's a quirk... No doubt about it but I'm sure it will be fixed. Not like I've ever noticed it to begin with.

    This is a new topic altogether... But why would developers move to this to begin with?

    Well, I just edited the reg key to change it to TextPad which does HTML syntax highlighting. But yeah, MS didn't want that.

    When designing sites, the IE errors work well enough for me... :dunno: And a javascript debugger?? :ugh: Are you writing large-scale systems in Javascript or something?! When have you ever needed a debugger for javascript on webpages?

    Ok... And even for web developers... Why would this help? I could see it for when you're actually designing the site in some type of WYSIWYG editor (if that's your thing...) but why in the browser?

    Yes, I do like this feature. Although those plugins really do not impress me. But the feature being there is cool.

    I never understood the need for DL managers. I never use them even the 3rd party ones. So yeah, if you absolutely need one, and for some reason won't use DAP or the likes, then by all means use Moz/Firebird.

    :hs: Ok.... Who would actually set up keywords for bookmarks? It's a quirky feature I guess but... :ugh: If that's something you feel is a worthwhile add-on, then great...

    Well, the only thing I need my browser to remember is username/password for specific sites. And it does remember that so :dunno: And the Google Toolbar (which I need anyway) has it's own AutoFill feature if that's what you're talking about.

    I'm not sure I get this. Block banner ads? What appears instead? A red x? I'm not being a smart-ass either. Interested to hear what/how this works.

    Again.. Google Toolbar.. But I won't use that as an excuse. It is a short-coming of IE.

    It doesn't? :dunno: It remembers site-specific passwords. Or maybe you're talking about something else...

    I'm really not sure what this means... Are you saying you can't edit preferences in IE?? It might not have every imaginable preference being editable, but for what 99.99% of users need, it is definitely available.

    You're right. Eye candy. If they want it, they can use another browser. But me personally, I'm not going to install Moz/Firebird to just set it to an IE theme.

    A feature I never got used to. Maybe because I really only use XP with grouping in the taskbar. It's a worthwhile feature though and probably the only remotely sensible reason for IE users to switch to another browser. Not even close enough for me though.

    I can't think of why this is needed. Security and privacy settings for each page are available through IE too.

    Doesn't Windows user profiles handle all of that?? I'm really asking too...

    I only use Windows :)

    And that's a good way to end my side of the argument. For what I need, IE does everything. There is simply no reason for me to switch. The examples above really do not mean anything to me. IE works and will continue to work just fine. When I find it to be lacking, I'll look elsewhere.
     
  20. rob

    rob Guest

    nocera just owned astro.. :bowdown: sit down astro
     
  21. Astro

    Astro Code Monkey

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    PNG uses loss-less compression like GIF. But unlike GIF, PNG adds alpha-transparency (handles blending of transparencies) and it supports more then 256 colors. Basically, PNG is all the goodness of GIF and JPG combined plus some. Sadly, only the newer versions of image editing programs are really able to make use of PNG. Adobe Photoshop v5.x can handle PNG but does not save them in an optimized fashion (I believe newer versions can but I haven't tried this). Basically, PNG can produce JPG like images without loss of image quality (unlike JPG) and the advantages of transparency.
    --
    IE errors: Its a matter of opinion. But I'm just stating Moz/Firebird provide more details on the error at hand. If you're happy with IE, then use IE. Although having more info about a problem can never hurt.
    --
    DOM Inspector: If you're seriously developing web sites, having an idea how CSS interacts with the HTML can be valuable. The inspector also allows for tweaking of the CSS and even swapping in a different CSS file. This isn't necessary for everyday browsing, but can be rather valuable for the web developer.
    --
    DL manager: Basically, you're happy with IE's download manager which just pops up and says "saving" with a dialog window. I'm saying you have 3 different options with Moz/Firebird if you don't like to just have that one dialog. Its about options. At least there's a choice to pick what you want.
    --
    Trick bookmarks: "g test" - searches google on the word "test". "d test" - looks up dictionary.com with the word "test". "t test" - looks up thesaurus.com for the word "test". There's plenty of other possibilities then the examples I've provided. This isn't a feature for everyone, but it can be handy.
    --
    Image blocking: If an image is blocked from a particular server (right click on image -> Block), no images from that server will be shown. Instead, a blank space with whatever the background is will be shown. If the image is linked, the link will still work. To undo, go to Image Mangager or right click on the blank spot and click Unblock. Pretty easy.
    --
    about:config (_: = colin) : Not for the everyday casual web user. But if its a variable within Moz/Firebird, you can change it. Some of it can be handy if you don't want to dig into the Pref. dialog. Some of it effects performance. Some of it effects Moz/Firebird development, testing, and troubleshooting.
    --
    Popup manager / Google Toolbar: google toolbar is NOT IE. Sorry, disqualified on that one. Its like me saying Mozilla comes with all this plugin stuff as standard. It doesn't, just like the google toolbar is not standard with IE. Lets keep this apples to apples.
    --
    Page info dialog: That hard to reach image a little too hard to reach? You can fish it out and save it from this dialog window. Curious to what hidden form variables are being used but don't want to hunt for it in the HTML code? Not a problem. Trying to track down why your custom script header is not being interpretted properly? Then this is a good place to look. Moz/Firebird goes above and beyond what IE can provide about a page.
    --
    Profiles: My understanding with IE and profiles is you have to log in to the machine as a different user to get different settings in IE to come up. Its not like IE has a profile manager built into it where you can setup multiple users (from within IE) that each have their own settings and change profiles on the fly.
    --

    The list I gave in my previous post was to outline the features of Moz/Firebird versus IE. They weren't meant to persuade you at any particular level but to point out there is life after IE.

    When's the next scheduled major IE release? Isn't it scheduled for the next Longhorn release because IE is too integrated with the OS? What new and wonderful innovation has IE brought to the browsing world?

    Anyways, I enjoy throwing web site's IE stats off. :) (actually, with one of the plugins, I can change Moz's user agent as well as turn off the sending of the referrer URL.)
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2004
  22. Astro

    Astro Code Monkey

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    Bring it on! :)

    In all seriousness, I'm having fun with all of this so hopefully folks out there don't take any of this personally and lets stay civil.

    I'm just pointing out the feature set of Moz/Firebird. I challenge someone to point why IE gets them so excited besides it comes as the default browser and has a blue E on the desktop.
     
  23. Nocera

    Nocera ...

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    Hahaha... yes... this is not an argument. But it's always a pleasure Astro. ;) I just wanted to comment on the Google Toolbar thing. I said myself: "Again.. Google Toolbar.. But I won't use that as an excuse. It is a short-coming of IE." The thing is that I NEED the Google Toolbar (only available for IE I believe). I do a lot of SEO work, and I need to see PageRank scores and what not. I was simply saying that having it there, I don't have the typical IE annoyance of pop-ups.
     
  24. Astro

    Astro Code Monkey

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    That's cool. Its the right tool for the job then. There maybe a plugin for Moz to do this, but I'm too lazy to look for it...
     
  25. DatacomGuy

    DatacomGuy is moving to Canada

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    This is great. :coold:
     

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