Tuesday, June 17, 2008

SOFTWARE: Leave the Fox Alone

Okay, Firefox 3.0 is out and I am going to take a pass. I could live temporarily with some of my needed add-ins missing, but I'm mystified by one omission in Firefox 3.0 that I cannot find a single intelligent reason for.

Whenever I showed Firefox 2.x to Internet Explorer users, I waste no time showing them a folder full of bookmarks. I middle-click on that folder and, like magic, EVERY bookmark in the folder opens up in separate tabs. As I described it usually, "I turn on the computer, fire up Firefox, middle click on this folder called 'DAILY' and go off to do the rest of my morning rituals. By the time I come back, ALL the sites I visit every day are loaded and ready to go." It's like magic to IE users, already established as being a little slower and willing to believe in whatever MS feeds them.

So, why oh why did the programmers of Firefox 3.0 do away with the middle click on bookmarks? This baffles me beyond all comprehension. I KNOW it's easy to right click and choose the first choice, Open All in Tabs. But it's a stupid, stupid, extra key-click with NOTHING to be lost by retaining the former setting. It shows all the foresight of a Conservative Minister trying to get his Canadian government booted out of office. More on that another time.

At any rate, there's enough still missing in the actual gold version of the program that I'm going to wait a bit for the groundswell to mount and force the bozos to recant the middle click paring. What's missing from what's needed in Firefox 3.0? CLEO and FEBE, my automated backup of bookmarks, passwords and extensions, is not available. Neither is TabBrowser Preferences, which might never be. TextMarker!, Bookmark Duplicate Detector and Save Image to Folder are missing and I won't run a Firefox session without them. Plus there's RePagination, SafeCache and SourceForge Direct Download to await updates for.

In some ways, that's an astonishingly small list of my personalizations that haven't made the transition to v3.0 right out of the box. Most people would be satisfied to get an 80 percent carry over. Me, I dwell on the stupid decisions and the missing things.

You've been warned.

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