If technology doesn't seem like magic, it's probably obsolete

I'm finding less time to update my blog these days, but my flickr photostream is often updated.

Playing in my house right now...

At 00:00 GMT on Thursday I was listening to:

More of what I've been listening to

Latest pictures from my phone
More pictures from my phone

Thursday June 10 2004 at 00:45 GMT


Why have I not blogged this before? No idea. Anyway, several people have recently got in touch looking for help after their computer has been hit by all manner of spyware, adware and other junk. I totally sympathise with these people (and help where I can). The time has come to face up to the fact that Internet Explorer and Outlook Express simply do not cut it as productivity-enhancing tools. Once, when no-one else was really innovating and Netscape had been pulped, they were adequate, but these days they just leave you vulnerable, in line for loss of data and general pain.

The solution? One big step in the right direction is a move to the wonderful Mozilla products Firefox, for browsing, and Thunderbird for email. If you think the open source community involves beards and having no social graces, this is your wake up call. These products are professional, solid, polished and developing actively to include useful features for the user -- that's you, me, them, everybody.

Firefox is set to auto-block pop-ups, so wave goodbye to annoying adverts for casinos and body alterations to please every girl/guy you ever meet. Plus all that spyware code that fills your computer, slows things down and redirects your start page to site become a thing of the past. Add in tabbed browsing, and real standards compliance, which means you'll actually see this site in its true glory, and you're on to a winner.

This is my browser of choice, and I know how to browse, believe me. Sure, there are a few times you need to flick back to IE to see a certain site, but these times are becoming fewer as the days go by, and as Web developers wake up to the fact that making a site that purely works in IE is idiotic, but that's a whole 'nother discussion (see here and here for two reasons that immediately spring from my aggregator).

Thunderbird is the Mozilla email client, and just as Firefox leads the way in browsing, Thunderbird is the boy for email. All those viruses and junk that hits Outlook Express users? Doesn't touch Thunderbird. All those spam messages OE happily displays for you? Thunderbird uses a built-in filter that learns to consign them to the bin.

Moving all your mail over to Thunderbird is a cinch, so what are you waiting for?


I use Thunderbird and love it, tried Operas email but it just wasnt for me. One thing I cant work out though is how to get the cursor to be set above the original emails text when you reply to someone, and not at the bottom. Help?
Carrick | Thursday June 10 at 07:04 GMT | Web| Comment permalink

Tools -> Account Settings -> [select account] -> Composition and Addressing, let's you change that. Remember that if you're having a conversation in email that replying to the relevant parts makes easier reading and more sense, and that's done with the cursor below the original message.
Martin Little | Thursday June 10 at 07:18 GMT | Web| Comment permalink

note to gmail users, that firefox is actually supported ahead of safari. if google sees it as a priority, it bodes well for the future.
eric | Thursday June 10 at 08:53 GMT| Comment permalink

I add my vote to Firefox. I use it at work and have turned a couple of my workmates onto it. I have it set up to have javascript, etc. turned off by default, only turning it on when I need it. I just hate anything that controls my browsing experience, rather than me controlling it, and Firefox hands back control.

And .... it is fast, super stable, and, as Martin mentioned, offers tabbed browsing.

Still not as good as Safari, though :)
hewligan | Thursday June 10 at 18:17 GMT| Comment permalink

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