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Firefox is crap


VaKo
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Firefox Has Too Many Developers

http://www.trollaxor.com/2009/12/firefox-h...developers.html

In its last several releases, everyone's favorite Open Source browser has become an unstable mess of add-ons, plugins, and other hacks that chew up memory like a fat kid with a chocolate-dipped corn dog. In fact, just last week, SecurityFocus released news of a devastating exploit in Firefox 3.5.5 that they blame squarely on its unstable architecture.

From its infancy Firefox has been the product of collaborative effort, unifying code from hackers worldwide. But thanks to the Hayes Law, we see that there is a "sweet spot" to such a development style, and that Firefox has long since left it behind. In the chart below, we can see that the number of Firefox developers has increased exponentially since 2002, and that number will more than double in 2010.

But it's time to be honest: either Firefox, as a modern web browser, will have killer performance on 64-bit, multicore Intel chips or it's not worth downloading and installing. And since, as we have seen in the recent past, that Firefox is actually getting slower with each release, Firefox is certainly a waste of time for anyone who takes their web browsing seriously.

ffdevs.png

The Hayes Law states that, given a specific type of software project, there is a certain complexity associated with it, and with that complexity an optimal number of developers. It's actually a little more complicated than that, taking into account development model, coding platform, programming language, and code repository platform, but in the end it's easy to plug in the numbers and see where a project's headed.

Against the Hayes Law, Firefox appears to have jumped the shark sometime after the Firefox 2.0 in 2006. The next major release, Firefox 3.0 in 2008, introduced many issues users today complain about: bloat, sloth, instability, and insatiable hunger for memory. Firefox user complaints increased in tandem, all syncing up with the jump in developers. Ergo Firefox's problem: too many cocks in the kitchen.

To further underline this growing problem, Firefox completely falls down in Acid3: Firefox 3.5 scores 93/100, and Firefox 3.6 scores only 87/100. Needless to say, Firefox 4.0 mockups score 0/100. Sadly, this is a continuation of a trend: Firefox took the longest of all browsers to beat Acid2. And don't even think about Acid4. Firefox is collapsing under its own weight.

The core of this problem looms: the number of developers, as seen in the chart above, will only continue to skyrocket for Firefox 3.6 and beyond. By the time Firefox 4.0 is released, sometime in December 2010, the number of developers will be nearly 4,000, almost a full magnitude greater than the optimal 445 or so in 2006. Clearly, Firefox is about to capsize.

So what is to be done? Users can petition the Mozilla Corporation and the Mozilla Foundation to rethink their development model, focus on optimization instead of new features, and perhaps backpedaling on some of the less sensible projects like Mozilla Mobile and the non-standard XUL interface. Concerned individuals should log into Mozilla's Bugzilla and let loose with their bug and crash reports like never before.

Unless Brendan Eich and Mitchell Baker take their heads out of their asses, however, the best course of action is to escape Firefox like rats from a sinking ship. There are other options out there: Apple's small, fast, and efficient Safari, coded by several dozen professional programmers, is currently the best browser for Mac and Windows. The time-honored Internet Explorer continues to embrace and extend Web standards. Other browsers like Chrome, Opera, and Lynx are out there too but aren't for everyone.

In the end, Mozilla Firefox as it stands is a sick browser that is in need of emergency surgery not ready to take on the challenges of Web 2.0 and things like CSS 3, HTML5, and JavaScript 1.9. Unless something happens soon, Firefox will take the entire World Wide Web—and everyone who depends on it—back to the Stone Age of the Internet.

I'm inclined to agree with this tbh, Firefox is definitely not as shiny as it once was. It just feels old and clunky. Pretty much the only thing that keeps me using it is the Extensions it has (some of which are damn useful), something IE8 and Chrome will eventually catch up and overtake on. I find IE8 works better, crashes less, runs faster and I don't get issues where a youtube video will make FF consume an entire core long after that tab was closed. Chrome is definitely good, just a little lite for my tastes, and Opera is Opera, an acquired taste.

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I like Chrome, but until all of the functionality provided by Adblock Plus, BetterPrivacy, Cookie Monster, and NoScript is available in one form or another, I won't make the switch full time. I also really like Aurora quite a bit, but it has the same deal breaker as Chrome for me.

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I might agree on the fact that Firefox has had its issues, especially on Windows, I have had more problems overtime with it at work with freezeups, problems with tab browsing. I don't seem to have much issue with it on Ubuntu however.

I like Chrome, but I have need for certain plugins that are quite there yet.

There is going to be a bit of delay in 3.6 and later versions are being pushed back as well, maybe someone at the Mozilla Foundation is listening.

CNET

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Could they make a FF Lite and FF Full so that you had your choice between speed or all the added stuff. Split the developers now to focus on one or the other.

I don't think this will help, a naked Firefox install is pretty feature light is it is, there isn't much they could take off. The need to focus on stability and things like separating tabs into different processes. They also desperately need to focus on quality control and a review process for extensions, some of which are pretty dire.

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More important than anything else - all of the browsers, all of the web, and everyone else need to dump the epic abortion that is known as Flash (and that doesn't mean go to Silverlight either). Only Adobe could make Microsoft look like a security conscious software developer.

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Without even reading that lengthy article, I will just have to agree with the Topic's subject of "FF is crap". I have used it, even have it installed for testing web site designs, but overall, just dont like it. Not sure why so many people rave about it, but I just dont feel secure when using it, and hate that I have to rely on things like NoScript and Adblocker, that Opera handles natively, without updates for every damn extention each time I run the program. While I will give it the better than IE (safer, more secure for lack of ActiveX and VBS) those are hardly two things I ever had issue with in IE, and were always turned off anyway. FF is (in my opinion) slow,clunky, unstable, and just down right annoying at times, but again, just my opinion. It may render some things Opera throws a fit with, but I think that is mainly because people code their shit for IE and FF alone, with neglect for Safari and Opera. I can often get stuff to run in Opera though if I take the time to fix the javascript or even mask as IE, but if its not loading in Opera, I can live without it.

Opera. FTW.

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I actually have a lot of respect for Microsoft and the IE team, they are consistently getting better, they have addressed a large amount of security and usability concerns and its ahead of FF in many areas. The only thing it doesn't have is extensions, which is FF's saving grace, despite being a damoclean sword.

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I have to admit (but hate it at the same time) that yes, FF is crap, and is getting browner by the minute. I originally came to the conclusion right after ff3.0 was finalized (can't remember the rev.#). It was ok I guess but not too great. Noticed automatically that extensions were crap.. I still use it mainly on my desktop, but I have switched to chrome for everything else.

The only reason why Chrome is good for me mainly is because I don't really use extensions, and it's really light and fast. I also have to agree with rouge spear about flash... especially with the advancements we have had recently with wmv and good ole 264, there is just no real need for this proprietary platform for videos alone, and most everything else can use javascript, java (cringing but it at least multithreads and is faster these days), and other common stuff for interactivity in web pages.

I tried opera for a time, but it felt to me like going out with a crippled model.. looks nice, but no dice. (cue the tom green references) :X

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IE would be better if it had more security zones with more settings (like NoScript).

In more details, the untrusted zone is pointless because that's the whole internet, and for people who do not have a grate level of cynicism, unlike many of there people here, they will never add any sites to the list of untrusted sites. More over, a black list approach is completely backwards. The internet zone should be renamed to indicate that it is both the untrusted zone and the whole internet.

Trusted zone [insert big tick here], nothing bad as such here

IE should have a temporarily trusted zone, same as above, but is temporary.

Would also be nice to make cookie control part of zones for the sake of ease.

Been able to change a sites zone should also be toolbar able (you know, NoScript really is a big steaming pile of awesome).

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lol @ sparda. This is true. I really don't like IE though. Have not since they re-vamped the interface. I did hear at least it is a little more secure now than it used to be. I think though that Microsoft should pretty much give it up with ie though. Although I know there is nothing wrong with it being there and it's still a lot of peoples choice browser, it really seems to just give Microsoft more greef than it's really worth imho.

Ever since XP SP2, I only use ie once per install, and that *was* to download firefox and make it the default.

But in this time of aggrivation, just like with free anti-x software (x being virus/adware/etc), there will come another great software from left field and the process will continue, so more of a question to me, is when it's going to happen and what will it be?

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I unfortunately have to agree... FF has become quite bloated. It used to load instantaneously, but that is in the past. If chrome gets a little less-lite then it might become my primary browser.

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I'm waiting for official extension support and 1password to get a extension then I am switching to Chrome on OS X.

I also agree with RogueSpear, Flash needs to die. I don't think firefox would be so bad if flash didn't suck.

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I wouldn't go so much as to say FF is crap but I will say that it has going down hill. I've recently moved to Chrome and needless to say, it's quite awesome. However, I cannot leave FF 100% until they release more decent extensions to Chrome. Right now, I'm stuck in the middle.

FF really needs to step up its game.

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A lot of complaints about non sense. You can just modify FF the way you want it instead of crying over it and if Flash is so ass as you think go a head and do a better version or send feedback to Adobe/Mozzila, I very much doubt that any one from thouse companies visit theys forums in search of feedback.

If you want stuff done right you have to do it yourself.

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I'm not a programmer/developer, I'm an end user. I can't build a better browser, because I personally do not have the skill to do so, but that doesn't mean that any critical feedback I have about the program is invalid. I've been using Firefox since the early beta versions back in 2004, but half a decade later the shine has definitely worn off and its not the best browser on the market anymore IMHO.

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I would like to add in after VaKo, Yes, Mozilla might listen and tighten up, but Adobe has shown it takes an act of god (or ungod) to make them listen. Just look at the MAC/Linux issues that are still going a-rhy, yet they have only alloted a small handful of their team to fixing stuff for these O.S. because its not the big bucks for them. Honestly I don't have to do anything though about the Adobe issues, because there are a lot of alternatives to using flash, just that nary a web developer goes without using it.

*would have to say that my hats off to that small handful of developers that are on the linux/mac front from Adobe because they have fixed a lot of issues, just haven't got down to the polish yet, and if there are any of these people (doubtfully but oh well) that read this, My hats off to you and not just for doing what you have done, but also because the company you work for sucks ass, and yet you tolerate it.. w00t!*

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While firefox has lost some of its shine there are some things that still make it the best browser for me at the minute.

Top of the list has to be firebug. If you do web development and use it then you will know what I mean.

Next on the list would be extensions (Yes I know firebug is an extension as well but I feel it deserves it's own entry). Note not all the extensions, just install the few that you use. The key thing with the extensions is that it makes it a lot easier to use firefox for many tasks. I needed to develop a kiosk type computer which lets users access two specific web sites. With firefox it was a simple matter of using a kiosk extension and then writting another one that let me do the extra options that were required (mainly calling local scripts to change the screen size/ resolution to make it accessable to people with limited vision).

Portability is another big plus. Those kiosk machines were running a locked down linux install, though my main machine at work is windows. My netbook runs a different distrobution of linux and my laptop at home runs Vista. Firefox works fine on all of them.

If I was just using firefox to view web pages on a windows machine I would probably have moved to Chrome long ago, but as I deal with so many different OSs and tasks I will be sticking with FireFox. Till Chrome can do everything I need that is.

Of course there are down sides, memory use is always high with browsers (Why is that?) Firefox is currently using 138MB of memory for 4 tabs, why when I was younger we would get 3 dimensional graphic games in under 48K now we need 138MB for what is effectively 4 pages of text. But I will stop that rant there.

Another problem with firefox is the fact that if one tab locks up they all lock up, the seperate process structure of Chrome does look a lot more stable.

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