Competition is a good thing, and the way that Mozillaâ€™s Firefox and Googleâ€™s Chrome have re-invigorated browser development will mean good a better web experience all round.
Letâ€™s be honest, Internet Explorer never really offered Firefox much of a challenge. Internet Explorer has only really managed to remain relevant through being included with every copy of Windows. Much the same can be said of Safari on the Mac (itâ€™s nice to see that the WebKit rendering engine has a new home in Chrome). When Google released Chrome, Firefox could finally pick on a kid that was the same size.
Yesterday Mozilla announced that Firefox 3.1 Beta 1 was available for download. This brings with it a whole new raft of features and improvements…
- Web standards improvements in the Gecko layout engine
- Added support for CSS 2.1 and CSS 3 properties
- A new tab-switching shortcut that shows previews of the tab youâ€™re switching to
- Improved control over the Smart Location Bar using special characters to restrict your search
The new tab-switching feature is really neat (press CTRL+TAB to get a view of all the open tabs), and the special character support for the Awesome Bar makes life a lot easier (for example, you can restrict the search to your history by typing ^, or search only bookmarksÂ using *, or tagged pages with +, if you want to match only text in the URL type @, and for title and tags only use #). Immediately we get usability gains without chrome overload or bloat. Nice.
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