Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Back to Firefox

So, for the past few months I have been using Google's Chrome browser, and really, really liking it. It took up less screen real estate, less memory, and overall I just preferred it over Firefox. I really liked how the address bar worked, from putting the suggestions right up there as you type, to searching from the address bar with just a hit of the enter button if no URL's came up. I know this is a small thing, but I also really liked not having to hit the down arrow to select the top result in the search of my history and URL's.

However, some things bothered me. The lack of add-ons, and the lack of customizability. A big thing for me as a researcher is easily keeping track of many, many research articles. I was also recently happy to discover Zotero, a handly little Firefox plugin for keeping track of references. But I was starting to use Chrome more and more, and so I was using Firefox and Zotero less and less. This has been a bad thing, unless I keep two browsers going, and what is the point of that? Now, my university has a Refworks subscription, but what happens when I leave? And I like the concept of open source stuff, that in theory anyone can improve upon.

So starting today, I am disabling (not uninstalling) the various Firefox add-ons that I don't actually use all the time (like WebDeveloper, FireBug, IE Tab, and Ubiquity) so that I use less memory, getting rid of the ones I dont use at all, installed EnterSelects, and will be back to using Firefox as my main browser. Hopefully the Mozilla team will take some hints from Chrome, and will improve in the next iteration.

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