Team Murder No Brain No Headache.

24Oct/06Off

It’s Shiny, New, And Now Most Of My Extensions Are Broken

I guess we're all supposed to mention this release and go rambling on about all the usual bugbears that we always do now that the new version of Firefox is out in the wild. I dutifully yanked down a copy from the ether and was generally happy with most of the changes made that were immediately obvious.

One thing that immediately becomes obvious is the the dramatically less stupid handling of the tab bar. You can now scroll forward or back if your tabs get obscenely high in number. I tend to use the option-squiggly (that's the Apple key for those in on the lingo) in combination with arrow keys to navigate the twenty or so tabs that I have open but this is still a nice touch. I was going to mention something about the memory usage problem that comes up with legions of tabs under the default FF configuration but I've disabled all of that memory hogging bullshit. There is no reason, ever, that any single application that isn't launching moon shuttles and telepathically curing the bubonic plague should use more than a GB of RAM. Optimism browsing PR-speak or not this is unacceptable and hopefully will be eliminated or at least drastically reduced in the newer versions of the browser. It still irks me that somewhere between 10 to 15 tabs uses 156.5 MBs of real RAM and 392 MB of virtual memory. Apparently there is some brain surgery going on behind the scenes. It's really unfortunate that I check the Activity Monitor because I'm now just irritated because memory use actually seems worse rather than better. Half of a gig (where virtual memory is headed now that I've actually closed a couple of tabs) and rising is just plain wrong. I do like the new tab bar though.

There are some new options in the Preferences menu. I didn't notice any that immediately effected me but it seems like more of the innards are being exposed for those who feel up to the task of picking through them. That is a good thing. Don't hide from me or tell me lies and we'll be great friends. The new version also looks really nice. I've only seen the OS X client but I'm sure some idiotic notification will be waiting for me tomorrow morning so I'll be able to see what looks different in a Windows environment.

So, that is sort of news.

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