My experience with FF and why Opera is better

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  1. #1
    5|-|1+|-|34|) ober's Avatar
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    My experience with FF and why Opera is better

    So I have Firefox loaded on this PC for development purposes. I don't use it for normal browsing, mainly because I'm an avid Opera fan. BUT, because of either boredom or curiosity at work this morning, I decided to give it a fair shakedown, and here are my problems with it:

    Themes: The default theme isn't that great looking, so I thought I'd use their skinning feature called "Themes" to go find some new ones. They have several, which I start to fumble through and I quickly realize the horror that is Firefox theming. First off, you have to restart the browser each time you want to apply a new theme to it. To make it worse, the idiots making the themes are not only lacking imagination, but they can't make a decent preview screen to save their life. I want to see what I'm going to use before I go through the pain of actually downloading it and restarting my browser. On top of that, I found at least 1 or more categories of skins that had no theme in them!! WHY EVEN SHOW IT? And there were no "EDITOR'S PICKS". Fabulous. Way to keep up with that, editor.

    Opera not only makes it easier to get to the skins, but you see a structured preview of what you're downloading before you click anything. On top of that, it pops the new skin into place so you can see it and then even offers to remove it if you don't like it. Oh, and did I mention you haven't restarted the browser at all yet? Oh, and most of the skins look good and they're more customizable than the FF themes.

    Not good so far.

    Extensions: So firefox allows users to create small controls and tools that add to the browsing experience. I start to think this is pretty cool and try to add a few. Again, the first thing I notice is that the goddamn browser wants me to restart to apply any of the extensions. WHY? Another thing I quickly begin to notice is that the majority of these "extensions" are BUILT INTO OPERA. They are just things people use or want... like more tab control and validation tools. And the stupid weather extension pops up like some sort of annoying twat everytime I start the browser, no matter what I tell it. And half of the extensions couldn't be used until I upgraded from 1.0 to 1.0.1 or something.

    On a positive note, I do like some of the additional tools that can be found, like the color picker, and some of the web developer tools... but again, a lot of them require going to a menu or a toolbar when Opera has a lot of the stuff loaded into a context menu.

    And that's about as far as I got. Another negative that I found was that it asked me a lot of stupid questions, like I was some kind of idiot... or needless things about arriving at a 3rd party site... no crap. I want to be there, leave me alone.


    I was just generally not happy with the experience, and as I said before, I'd pay for Opera again in a heartbeat.

    And I don't want to start some stupid flame war, I'm just stating my opinion.

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    To be honest, when I saw the title I was just going to flame the poster, but when I saw it was you I decided to give it a fair read.

    I guess those are all valid arguments though.

    You are right, FF should build things like mouse gestures into the original application instead of having it as an extension.

    I never dabble with themes or decoration (I still have yet to put posters on my dorm wall) so I don't really care about that, but im going to fiddle with it to see what you mean.
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    C++ Witch laserlight's Avatar
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    Another thing I quickly begin to notice is that the majority of these "extensions" are BUILT INTO OPERA.
    The idea was to give users more choice to opt in, instead of more choice to opt out.
    That may be a Good Thing, but then some extra features are so often asked for or used that it seems better to require an opt out for them instead.
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    Very good writeup. Not two things that would really effect me as a browser, but i still love opera. I did pay for it again, actually, i just renewed about 2 hours ago : )

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    Crazy Fool Perspective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darkness
    You are right, FF should build things like mouse gestures into the original application instead of having it as an extension.
    NO NO NO!!! thats the whole point of FF. I dont use mouse gestures, so building them into the app is just bloat for me. FireFox itself is the base level of a browser, the lowest common denomitor. As laserlight mentioned, the idea is to give the user as much choice as possible for the features they do/don't want. Thats why features are separate extensions.

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    Registered User major_small's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ober
    Another thing I quickly begin to notice is that the majority of these "extensions" are BUILT INTO OPERA.
    as laserlight said, this can be seen as a good thing--both IE and Opera have everything 'built-in'. Mozilla/Firefox were both built off the netscape engine. the Netscape engine was built with the thought that a browser should be light, and accept plugins where needed. this was it's main advantage against Microsoft's IE. Obviously, that didnt' work out too well because netscape's source was opened up and the browser wars grew cold, but there was a big enough following to build mozilla/firefox out of the ashes.

    Mozilla/Firefox take the same side netscape did--it offers an alternative to an IE or Opera-type browser: you don't have to install a whole slew of unecessary things if you're not going to use them. and the theme--personally, I don't think IE or Opera's default theme is any better than Firefox or Mozilla's default theme--I use Mozilla with the toy factory theme...

    At first I though having everything already in the browser was a better option, but after using mozilla for a little while, I've noticed that most of the plugins I needed, I found out I needed within the first week. since that first week, I've added maybe two plugins that were purely optional, like the gmail notifier for mozilla.
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    5|-|1+|-|34|) ober's Avatar
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    I wasn't even talking about mouse gestures, so he misread me wrong. I was talking about the options given on the context menu and more options on the tabs. Hell, even with the "tab extension", I still can't duplicate a page from a right-click menu.

    And to those of you who would say "all those extra features bloat the download and the application"... I say, look at the 2 package sizes and tell me which one is smaller. That's right. Opera. Even with all the fancy stuff, AND the mail client, AND a thousand and one other things which must be loaded seperately with FF.

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    I find most people who fight for one or the other havent used the one they flame at all if not for any amount of time. Install the other browser and spend a few weeks to a month using it and form an opionion, like ober has. I myself was once a FF fanboy.

    (GASP)

    Then i spent a month seeing what all the hype with Opera was. Ok im lieing, i spent two days and i completely removed FF. Every time a signifigant change to FF is made with a new release, i take the time to try it out. I still find, however, that i am very happy with my browser, and as such i contribute financially to its development.

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    Registered User major_small's Avatar
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    I've tried all three (five if you count netscape, mozilla, and FF as seperate) browsers I mentioned, and I wouldn't say I 'flame' any of them... I think they all have their own respective qualities, but I personally choose mozilla/ff over the others...
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    NO NO NO!!! thats the whole point of FF. I dont use mouse gestures, so building them into the app is just bloat for me
    That's why you don't enable it. The first time you do a mouse gesture with Opera, it asks if you want to continue using them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ober
    Hell, even with the "tab extension", I still can't duplicate a page from a right-click menu.
    If FF doesn't have that feature I won't even give it a try

  12. #12
    Carnivore ('-'v) Hunter2's Avatar
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    >>If FF doesn't have that feature I won't even give it a try
    Odd. I didn't even notice it. But hey, I never even use the right-click menu except for "save as". Mouse gestures covers pretty much everything for me (and yes, Opera has it too. But my point was, I don't give a hoot about the context menu at all).

    I'd give Opera a try, if I weren't so darned lazy.. I don't feel like downloading/installing it, and if I like it then it means I'd have to uninstall FF too
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    Toaster Zach L.'s Avatar
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    The only extension I've added to FF is the Adblock. Nothing else I'd really need (or use). But, I don't look for much more than basic functionality. I used Opera on my old computer, and I thought it was a nice browser as well (for my purposes, they are functionally equivalent). The only thing is, the certificates for some of the websites for school don't play well with all browsers, and they do with FF, so I have no reason to change it (otherwise, I probably would've stuck with Safari).
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    My favourite is the "Open this page in IE" extension. And the stock prices extension.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hunter2

    I'd give Opera a try, if I weren't so darned lazy.. I don't feel like downloading/installing it, and if I like it then it means I'd have to uninstall FF too
    Opera will gladly uninstall FF for you in its install program

    >>My favourite is the "Open this page in IE" extension.

    Something people may not know is that you can add buttons to Opera: http://nontroppo.org/wiki/CustomButtons?show_comments=1

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