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ajt (2546)

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UK based. Perl, XML/HTTP, SAP, Debian hacker.

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Journal of ajt (2546)

Saturday June 22, 2002
11:03 AM

Living with Mozilla

[ #5862 ]

I have used a number of web browsers over the years, starting with XMosaic on Sun workstations, through the early Netscape betas on Windows, into the browser war period, and through the current phase of IE domination.

Over the years I've tried a lot of browsers: UdiWWW; Mosaic; Navigator; Lynx; Links; Amaya; Opera; Cello; AMSD Ariadna and IE amongst others. I've run browsers on: DOS; Win3.1; Win9x; WinNT; SunOS/Solaris; MacOS and Linux. You could say I've tried a few of the possible browsers!

Some browsers over the years have generated a wow factor, the early Netscape Navigators were so much faster and slicker than the Mosaic they replaced. Some filled me with horror - the first two IEs were utterly terrible, looking even worse than Mosaic. Once the war between IE and Navigator erupted, all the diversity in the browser market was erased almost at a stroke and when Netscape gave up the market stagnated.

About 12 months ago I rediscovered Opera, one of the many also-rans that was still running. It's very small, amazingly fast, and it's tabbed browsing is great. I must say that I liked it so much that I actually bought a copy. Back then Netscape 4 was looking long in the tooth, IE was everywhere, and Mozilla still hadn't arrived.

After a brief flirtation with the flawed Netscape 6.x family I tried a late Mozilla beta, and was blown away. It's so much faster than Netscape 6.x, so much more attractive than IE, has better standards support than even Opera.

I can't say that Mozilla is perfect, it's still too fat and slow, the tabbed browsing doesn't work quite as well as Opera's does, but it's slick user interface*, and it's great rendering engine does make it the closest thing to perfection at the moment!

It brings the wow factor back to the Internet! I must say that I've hardly used anything else since.

*The ability to block images and cookies on a per site basis for example.

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