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scrottie (4167)

scrottie
  scott@slowass.net
http://slowass.net/

My email address is scott@slowass.net. Spam me harder! *moan*

Journal of scrottie (4167)

Tuesday February 16, 2010
12:41 PM

"Mozilla too much like Windows?" addendum

[ #40185 ]

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13505_3-10453399-16.html?part=rss&subj=news&tag=2547-1 _3-0-20

I thought, oh, goody, finally someone else has woken up to this and documented it in a main stream news outlet. But no. His analogy is limited to sluggishness and "community".

Look, people. Mozilla crashes. It lacks the stability that used to be the hallmark of Unix software. Unix software didn't blame the user -- "you have too many tabs open, no wonder it's crashing". Unix software has traditionally withstood abuse.

If a user on my system launches firefox while another user is running it, the first user gets a new window with all of their start tabs in it open again and the second user doesn't get anything. What the fucking hell?! That's another way that Firefox is like Windows -- it's so preoccupied by the single user experience that they throw security out the window.

There's this bug report of Mozilla ruining an engagement when it leaked data from one user profile to another: https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=330884

That's not an isolated case. Any "privacy" has been half assed and the creators repeatedly forget about the foibles of before and repeat them in various incarnations.

If one user launching firefox affects another user running it, then I seriously doubt that there's any real security -- security that's *free* with Unix unless you work to defeat it -- to protect the first user's data from the second. Actively working to negate free security in the name of rushing a whiz-bang product to market is decided from the Windows camp and Firefox does that over and over again.

It nags you to be your "primary browser". On Unix. I'm probably not running IE on Unix and if I am, it's not successfully hijacking "primary browserhood" from Firefox. Instead, it's fighting against things like Konq. Unix software shouldn't and, aside from Firefox, generally doesn't fight with other software in petty little squabbles like this. This was entirely a Windows thing.

Security. Abysmal. Even the legendarily bad Unix software such as sendmail and NFS/rpc require extremely few patches and settled down into extremely infrequent vulnerabilities much more quickly. Firefox makes sendmail look secure. That's pathetic. Bind 9 is a fortress by comparison to Firefox. And no, frequent security fixes is not the same as security. Bugs are inevitable, but endless torrents of them with no slow down in sight was not the norm before and it's tragic that it is now.

It's very much the Unix way that there be multiple competing offerings to do any task. Unix is modular. People readily replace 'ls' and 'more' with versions they like better. Firefox effectively had complete market share. The next contender was Konqourer which in olden days was fast and light but quickly turned into another bloated, crashing, sluggish monster. Now there's Chrome.

I held out with links -g and w3m (with the graphics patch, inside screen) as long as I could. Both of those are stable, well behaved programs. galeon was also fun. Eventually, I found I had to use Firefox or Seamonkey. Granted, the Web has long caused problems for Unix. Anyone remember client side VBScript/ASP, or Microsoft's IIS forcing clients to do NT domain authentication to access Web resources?

User interface race conditions were squarely in the domain of Windows. You should never have a field selected and then find that the program is modifying it at the same time you are. Yet Firefox's URL bar will suggest completions and then take unrelated keystrokes as confirmation that you want them; moments after you click into the URL box and after you've started typing, it'll highlight a chunk of text causing you to start typing over stuff; it'll move the cursor moments after you carefully click into the field where you want the cursor, either to the end or beginning. I recently found that I couldn't disable searching Google. I was trying to paste some javascript: bookmarketlet into the URL bar and every time I hit enter or clicked the button, it searched Google for the JavaScript. I found an explanation of how to disable that behavior -- remove all of the .xml in whereever/firefox/searchplugins and restart. The behavior continued. I looked in searchplugins and Firefox had replaced the .xml files. Fuck! There's no allowance for people who hate Google. The choice was made for you and thrust upon you -- they want money from Google therefore you're going to be scarified at Google's alter and if you don't like that, fuck you.

Just like Windows software, Firefox treats its users like shit. It's controlling, patronizing, combative, and demanding.

-scott

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