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ziggy (25)

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Journal of ziggy (25)

Tuesday August 06, 2002
05:41 PM

OS X Browsers

[ #6945 ]
I've used three web browers on OS X over the last month. Each has their problems.

IE: My biggest complaint is that IE doesn't support tabbed browsing. Today, that's a deal breaker. I never managed to get used to the "Download Manager", either. There are other things I didn't like about it, but I don't remember what they are; I stopped using IE within a week.

Mozilla: This seems to be a Carbonized app. There are still some bugs to work out: my bookmarks got eaten a couple of times; it doesn't respect standard OS X idioms (Cmd-M to minimze the current window, bring back a window when unhidden). Most importantly, it's Carbonized, so I can't tell which LaunchCFMApp process it is.

Chimera: This is a Cocoa interface on top of Mozilla. Fonts look really nice when antialiased. I wish there were more control over some of the preferences, but that's a minor issue. The big problem is that it currently really spins the CPU, and it seems to be bounded by the number of open tabs in the relevant window. (The more tabs, the slower it gets and more CPU it uses to open/close tabs). Oh, and it crashes occasionally, too.

No browser is perfect; that's not a surprise. It's amazing that as complex as they are, any one of them works, let alone that so many work reasonably compatibly. But it sure is an interesting and unpredictable set of issues to be dealing with...

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  • I'm really happy with OmniWeb []. It's my primary browser. I keep an IE around for those picky websites that look at UserAgent, or use broken-ish JavaScript, but otherwise nearly everything I do is in OmniWeb.
    • Randal L. Schwartz
    • Stonehenge
    • One of the reasons I'm trying to justify the purchase of a T?iBook is nostalgia for the old NeXT cube I used to use. OmniWeb is just part of that.

  • > it's Carbonized, so I can't tell which LaunchCFMApp process it is

    In terminal,

        ps -x | grep Mozilla

    Or if you want...

        ps -x | grep Mozilla | grep -v grep


    If you're trying to watch it in process monitor, hit the "More Info"
    disclosure triangle, the "Process ID" tab, and then click on the
    LaunchCFMApp entries until you find the matching PID.

    Not elegant, but if you need to tell which is which, that will work.

  • I occasionally have this rant on, but tabbed browsing feels, to me, antithetical to some fuzzily defined 'spirit of Mac-ness'. Namely, I take it as a given that a document is a window and a window is a document.

    Tabbed browsing- developed, as far as I can tell, to work around the fact that the Windows taskbar and many Unix app switchers spawn a new item in their list of running applications for every window- completely breaks this. For example, in Chimera, command-W doesn't close the window, whic
    • I mostly like tabbed browsing because it means I can keep associated windows together. Here is my window; here is my window; here is my paid work window. Each of these may have X tabs within them.

      That said, it's a great method of switching between windows. I hate arsing about with a 'Window' menu, or rubbish like that.

      It's like virtual desktops, but in your browser =)
        ---ict / Spoon
    • First, I'm not a UI designer. I'll leave those issues to people like Jakob Nielsen and Jef Raskin.

      Second, there are some interfaces that just feel right to me. I happen to like iTunes and iPhoto. It's a little weird that you can close (Cmd-W) an iTunes window, and get it back later, but can't do the same thing with iPhoto. Then again, it's not a huge issue for me: iTunes tends to be a long running app in the background, while iPhoto is very task-based - when I'm finished with the window, I'm probably

  • I use Opera a lot. It's not release quality, and it shows. It tends to get slower and slower and then need to be shutdown and restarted (the app, not the system). And of course, it doesn't parse things EXACTLY like IE, therefore some things display differently. (e.g., I'm typing this in a four inch by 1.5 inch window in buggerall point type right now).

    I tried iCab, but I think what drove me away from it was that it takes a long time before it displays page content. It also feels sluggish moving backwa