Firefox OS to be built in HTML5

Tuesday, July 17th, 2012 | Business | No Comments

MozillaTechWeek europe posted today, Mozilla Wants Hundreds of Thousands of Firefox OS Developers.

The new Firefox OS will be built around Gecko, the engine behind Firefox.

According to the article, 75% of “apps” (I hate that term) are already written in HTML5, which is entirely likely.  Given the cross platform nature of HTML5 many of those “instant iOS” apps will have no problem migrating to the Firefox OS.

From the article:

The Mozilla Foundation has just renamed the project Boot to Gecko “Firefox OS”. But can we really talk about an operating system?
Absolutely. In terms of architecture, it is an operating system based on Linux, just as Android is. But we rely on Gecko, the Firefox web browser layout engine, to run applications written entirely in HTML5. We dropped XUL (the XML User Interface Language) in favour of HTML5, a language known to all web developers.

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Firefox 12 Released

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012 | Business | No Comments

FirefoxFinally Firefox has migrated to the “silent update” that has kept Chrome browsers updated.

Mozilla announced Firefox 12 today.  You can download it at

The big changes with this update are the auto-update functionality, and the improvements mad to Developer Tools.

You can check out some other improvements such as:

  • Multitouch on Android support
  • Network timeouts on XMLHttpRequests
  • Line breaks in tooltips!
  • Many more!

If only Microsoft would allow Internet Explorer to auto update…


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Firefox 10 Released

Wednesday, February 1st, 2012 | Business | No Comments

FirefoxMozilla released Firefox 10 this morning.

Firefox has converted over to the Google Chrome release numbering, so browser versions aren’t as “major” anymore, but the new browser still brings some nice enhancements.

The biggest addition (especially for us web developers) is the addition of extra built-in developer tools (very similar to Chrome’s):

  • Inspect tool for CSS
  • Page Inspector (also like chrome, although it has a nice whole page highlight / dehighlight so you can see exactly what you are inspecting

Some other additions are:

  • Forward button hides until you go back
  • WebGL suppors anti-aliasing
  • CSS3 3D Transforms are present
  • Full Screen API (should be better for running web applications / kiosks)
  • General Bug Fixes

I think it’s worth checking out, as this version will also be part of the ESR program (Extended Support Release).  That means it won’t be updated for another 42 weeks, to allow businesses to use the browser long term.

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Chrome beats Firefox in Global Usage

Thursday, December 1st, 2011 | Business | No Comments

Google Chrome LogoAccording to statcounter, Chrome overtook Firefox globally for the first time.

My traffic still has Firefox at 25%, Chrome at 22.6% and Safari at 28% for overall traffic (most likely due to the high number of iPhone visitors, 25% of traffic is mobile).

Good to hear folks around the world are abandoning Internet Explorer.

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Firefox 8.0 Released

Tuesday, November 8th, 2011 | Business | No Comments

FirefoxDevelopers over at Mozilla have released Firefox 8.0, Mozilla Firefox Adds Twitter Search and New Features that Make Web Browsing Easier.

Some features in the new release are:

As far as us developers are concerned:

  • input and textarea now support selectionDirection and setSelectionRange()
  • Focus ring on elements using the tabindex
  • insertAdjacentHTML is implemented
  • Nested label event handling is fixed
  • window.postMessage() will pass File and FileList objects between windows
  • .contenteditable areas now back to paragraph entry mode (shift enter is <br>)
  • Fixed text-decoration rendering in quirks mode
  • Console now has a dir() command that will display a list of the properties of an object.

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Firefox: How People Use New Tabs

Thursday, September 29th, 2011 | Business | No Comments

Over at Boriss’ Blog, an informative article was posted,  How People Use New Tabs in Firefox:

As the web evolves, so does the way people interact with the web. Firefox’s user experience and research teams have been eager to learn about our users’ browsing habits so that we can better design for our users.  Lately, Mozillians like Lilian Weng and Jono X have been running some fascinating studies using Test Pilot to determine how, when, and why Firefox users open new tabs.  I wanted to note a few key takeaways from their recent study that give us a glimpse into how our users browse (full studies are linked at the bottom of this post).

He includes this helpful graph:

How Users Navigate Tabs in Firefox


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Firefox 7 Released: 50% reduction in memory

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011 | Business | No Comments

FirefoxMozilla released Firefox 7 yesterday to the general public.

Don’t think of Firefox 7 as a totally new browser, they are just adopting the Chrome release number system (much more frequent releases, more minor upgrades).

The biggest gain in Firefox 7 is in that it can reduce memory usage by up to 50%, along with other performance optimizations.

Relevant to developers, the updated browser now includes support for the W3C navigation timing spec API, and a new Canvas renderer that is hardware-accelerated.

Download the new Browser

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Firefox 5 Released

Tuesday, June 21st, 2011 | Business | No Comments

I had forgotten about Firefox’s promise to release browsers more rapidly (following the Chrome rapid release model).

FirefoxFirefox 5 was released today.

Some exciting improvements in Firefox 5 (mostly just the CSS3 animations):

  • CSS3 Animations
  • Mobile Firefox supports WOFF fonts
  • Security fixes (of course)
  • Enhanced Canvas tag support (accepts more, and works better)
  • HTTP request performance improvements
  • MathML support for embellished operators

Firefox 5 feels more of a “Firefox 4.1” from the UI perspective, but there are a lot of changes towards a more modern browser.

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Google Drops Firefox 3.5, Internet Explorer 7, Safari 3 Support

Friday, June 3rd, 2011 | Business | No Comments

Happy to hear, Google has announced that as of August 1 (2011), they will no longer support:

  • Firefox 3.5
  • Internet Explorer 7
  • Safari 3

This means that new functionality (which will probably roll out sometime this summer) may not work perfectly in those browsers.  It’s a nice move as those browsers are getting old, and the web has to set expectations as to which browsers should be supported.

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Firefox 4 Released

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011 | Business | No Comments

The official release of Firefox 4 is today.

Slightly late to join the pack with some of the features.

Since the last major update of Firefox there have been 10 releases of Chrome.

Some of the new features have already been released in other browsers:

  • Bookmark sync (Chrome even has a more thorough sync feature)
  • Faster JS engine – every browser now sports a “faster” javascript engine with every release
  • Partial hardware acceleration – other browsers have better hardware support
  • Simplified interface – everyone has it, welcome to the club.  It just doesn’t feel as cleanly done as Chrome.

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