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Firefox 3 first impressions

by Rob Friesel

Downloaded and installed Firefox 3 this morning1; here are some first impressions from throughout my first day of use:

  1. Content rendering seems improved.  Not sure if it actually is improved or not.  Just feels that way2.  Noted that it seems to use the default OS X buttons for otherwise unstyled form buttons now.  I should look into this content rendering thing, see if there really were changes.
  2. Tab bar is more “Safari-like”; tab now merges with the browser chrome instead of with the window of content.  But the closing ⊗s are still on “the wrong side”.
  3. Tab drag/drop indicator is easier to see.
  4. Firebug was incompatible with the upgrade.  (No surprise.)  But the Add-on/Extension Manager couldn’t find the compatible, updated version?  I had to go looking for it.  (Maybe this is more of an issue with Firebug?)
  5. TOOLBAR:
    1. I actually like the big back button3.
    2. Why not merge the Stop/Reload buttons like the Apple team did in Safari?  They’re mutually exclusive actions anyway…
    3. I like what they’ve done with the address bar.  Especially with the favicon.
    4. Also, I like how they have the little star for the bookmark.  Kind of reminds me of how “favourite” pages are marked in Confluence.
    5. Default theme makes it hard to see the separators on the Bookmarks Toolbar.
  6. Some fields don’t seem to want to let me type in them.  This one is hard to replicate but I think it has something to do with when I try to give focus to the field before the page finishes loading.
  7. When did the RSS “radio” badge get turned from orange to blue!?!?
  8. There seem to be a lot of pages that wind up with horizontal scrollers that didn’t have them before.
  9. When it comes to showing the address bar all the time, Firefox 3 means business.
  10. Speaking of the address bar: I like how it drops down like that with the memory of the favicon and title and URL.  Gimme some context!
  11. I like that the bookmarks are now displayed/managed in a sidebar.  Where they belong.  Responses to clicks seem a little strange sometimes.  (Try right-clicking on a bookmarklet?)
  12. And at the end of the day: it was nice that it didn’t crash when I quit the browser.  For a change.

Up next: Ubiquity?

  1. At long last? []
  2. Then again…  Some elements appear to render totally differently.  Maybe block-level elements?  Something is off in a few places… []
  3. Is this blasphemy?  Everyone else seems to hate it. []

About Rob Friesel

Software engineer by day, science fiction writer by night. Author of The PhantomJS Cookbook and a short story in Please Do Not Remove. View all posts by Rob Friesel →

2 Responses to Firefox 3 first impressions

justin says:

I’m really digging the grapple theme for FF3. I find it makes for a much more elegant experience. Though if you run both browsers at the same time in the same screen space as I usually do, it can get confusing. 🙂

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