Monday, October 03, 2005

Firefox Web Browser - Take Back the Net

Firefox is the little open source browser that is taking the world by storm. I say little, not in regard to its popularity, they report over 90 million downloads, but in regard to its actual size. The installed Windows edition only takes up 52 MB of the users hard drive. It's also quick and light in the performance department. Firefox really does surf at blazing speeds (bad pun intended).

But FireFox isn't just about saving hard drive space or RAM. It's also about saving your data. Firefox is built with the user's security in mind. This awesome free browser keeps the users' computers safe from malicious spyware by not loading harmful ActiveX controls. Even CERT, a US government internet security watchdog group said not to use IE, but to seek alternative browsers whenever possible. Firefox is definitely ready for the job.

A comprehensive set of privacy tools keep your online activity your business. And all of the data that builds up as users surf (cookies, saved form data, histories, cached files) can be removed by clicking one button. And unlike with Internet Explorer, it is really gone when it says its gone.

Firefox also includes as powerful pop-up blocker that refuses any un-requested pop-up windows. Unless the user deactivates that feature, pop-ups should never be a problem.

Sometimes pop-ups are needed. That's why whenever Firefox blocks a popup window, an icon appears in the status bar. The user can click on this icon to display a list of sites that Firefox has stopped and then just unblock a popup window that they want.

Tabbed browsing has been around since the early days of Netscape and Opera, but for some reason, the world's "most popular" web browser has yet to utilize it. Firefox, on the other hand, makes good use of this awesome feature. Tabbed browsing allows multiple pages to be opened in the same windows, instead of having multiple windows open at the same time. It is possible, of course, to still open more than one Firefox window, but it is far from necessary.

Another time-saving feature of Firefox is the built-in Google bar. No need to download a separate adware-bloated search bar, Firefox's Google bar is built right in - ad free. Don't like Google? Adding your favorite search engine is a breeze through Firefox's power-packed Extensions library.

Extensions are small programs that add new functionality to Firefox. It can be anything from a toolbar button to a completely new feature, such as mouse gestures or media player control. That's right you can play music or video right from your web browser with the FoxyTunes extension.

The great thing about extensions is that they allow Firefox to stay small and unbloated. Anyone who requires more features can download the appropriate extension. With basic knowledge of industry standards such as XML, CSS and JavaScript, anyone can even create his own extensions.

And boy have people been creative! There are Firefox extensions for everything you can think of. Want to keep up with the Terror Alert status of the United States? There's an extension that puts the color code right in your status bar. Want to keep up with the weather? A mini up-to-the-minute forecast can be placed at the bottom of your screen. Are you a follower of the world's most popular sport, Football? (or Soccer as we call it in the States) Then FootieFox is perfect for you. Current scores are put right on your screen. You can follow your favorite team, league, or scan through all of them with the click of a button. Extensions let you play games, get instant stock reports, change the way you download stuff, anything you can imagine!

Firefox's built-in Extension Manager for easy installation, removal and automatic updating of extensions. It also informs the user with an alert in case there is an update for any of your installed extensions. Thus, relieving users of the task of constantly checking for them manually.

Firefox is also the first browser to have the feature to keep itself up-to-date. "Smart Update" checks with Mozilla update site, and informs the user if there are any updates available for the browser. Smart Update also takes care of the installed extensions and themes by checking if there is an update available. Firefox can search for updates in the background and provide the user with an alert if there are any.

The good folks at Mozilla (makers of Firefox) have always recognized that the personal expression is important. Through the use of themes, users can completely change the look and feel of their own Firefox. A theme can change anything from just the toolbar buttons to the whole browser appearance. Themes can be downloaded and install themes with just a few simple clicks. You can make Firefox look like Netscape, or IE, or something completely different.

Pick up your copy of Firefox today and see how safe and fun surfing the web was meant to be.

If you'd like to help spread Firefox, visit this website.

0 comment(s):

Post a comment

<< Home