commanderW - 1:55 am on Aug 7, 2013 (gmt 0)
I've been reading about this new release for a while. 3 things that caught my eye:
the defeat of browser hijacking
the death of blink
1- Disarming Browser Hijackers When we type something into the URL bar, other than a URL, Firefox does a search on it. The default engine is Google. This can be controlled with the preference 'keyword.URL' in 'about:config'. Apparently, malware creators and unscrupulous add-on developers have been using this preference setting to type in their own landing pages. Sometimes it's ads, sometimes it's a drive-by.
Jorge Villalobos, Add-ons Developer Relations Lead for Mozilla, says [blog.mozilla.org ]
keyword.URL has been the bane of our support team since pretty much ever. It is changed by most unwanted add-ons, pointing to unwanted search engines, with highly unwanted results. With this bug fixed, the URL bar now uses the selected search engine from the search box as the keyword search. While this will be an annoyance to power users in the short term, it should be easy to override with an add-on.
And this statement from the Bugzilla forum where the proposal to change the keyword.URL preference was discussed
50% of release users have the keyword.url pref set to something other than default which can only be done by editing about:config or by an external application. I think it's safe to assume these are being changed by external applications like software and add-on installs. Historically this is the largest issue reported to support.
and also this one-
50% of our users have a non- standard keyword.URL
make it very clear!
So what they've done is eliminate 'keyword.URL' and now the default search engine in the URL bar is the same as the one in the 'search bar'. The user can change both by clicking on the arrow next to the icon on the left side of the bar. I guess the idea is that there is no preference to reset except the one controlled by the search bar, and that if that gets changed the user can change it back. Here's hoping for the best for the beleaguered Firefox team.
Furthermore some other buttons in options have been eliminated (though I don't really care about them :) [mozilla.org ] "Load images automatically", and "Always show the tab bar"
3-The Death Of Blink [developer.mozilla.org ]
Now I'm pissed! I have used the CSS text-decoration: blink; ever since my first web site. Judiciously. In my nav towers, boxes, and bars, in particular. It is a usability factor. It enhances navigability and legibility. Only Firefox and Opera have supported it, but I've put it in as a little bonus for these users :(.
You can read the all too festive discussion on implementing this move in the Bugzilla forum.
[bugzilla.mozilla.org ] Celebrated CSS guru Eric A. Meyer drops in to make a few comments.