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Double Stamp is an easy-to-understand guide to useful computer and internet technology. It's written to be readable by everyday computer users.

I'll trade you 4 IEs for 1 Firefox

FirefoxIf you run Windows it is very possible that you are viewing this page in Internet Explorer, Microsoft's pre-packaged web browser that comes with Windows (often called IE). To be sure, look in the upper left corner of the page. If you see a blue "e" icon, then you're using IE, and this article is intended to help you understand why you should try a different browser: Firefox. Maybe you're just fine with IE, or maybe it seems like too big of a hassle to change. Read on before you blow this off..

First, IE does a terrible job of interpreting web pages. An organization known as the World Wide Web Consortium creates standards on how browsers should display the files that are loaded when you visit a website. When the browsers are made to be compliant with the specifications of this organization, web designers can be assured that their pages will display correctly, no matter which browser is being used. Microsoft has ignored huge portions of these standards in developing IE, thus limiting many of the tools that would be available to web designers. It's kind of like trying to use a Phillips screwdriver on a proprietary screw that doesn't fit. As a web designer myself, I have pulled out my hair (which is why I am somewhat bald) trying to get my web pages to look the way that I intended them in IE. Web designers waste time figuring out how to "hack" their websites into working with IE. As a user, you get a less functional, less efficient browser using IE. Lame...

Secondly, IE is a lot less secure than Firefox. IE is closely built around the foundations Windows, making it much easier for a hacker or malicious user to use web pages to mess with your computer. Firefox, on the other hand, was built as a separate block, making security exploits much more difficult. I can guarantee you that your "spyware" scanner will find much fewer problems if you switch to Firefox.

Now, forget about the problems with IE, what's so great about Firefox itself? Firefox is very efficient; It uses less memory and displays pages very quickly. It has many user options which will allow you to navigate the way that YOU want to navigate. For example, don't you hate it when you click on a link and it opens a whole new window? You can set Firefox to disallow that, or have it open in another "tab" instead of a whole new window. There are all kinds of simple yet powerful options that you can set up in Firefox.

Firefox Config

Firefox also has a great architecture for add-ons. Add-ons are little modules that you can install into your browser to make it do new things. For example, you can install an add-on called WeatherFox which will show you your local weather forcast in the corner of your broswer. Want to listen to music right inside your browser? Try FoxyTunes. Maybe you want a tool that will allow you to load photos and web content quickly to your family blog... Firefox has extentions for that too. Here's a page with tons of firefox add-ons that you can explore.

Firefox has a whole slew of security features that you can learn about if you search the web. It's built to last, very slick, and well designed. There is no doubt in my mind that it is the best web browser available today, and I know you'll love it if you try it out. On top of that, it is entirely FREE and always will be. Get it now for free here.


tysqui said...

I'm going to let you in on a secret. This post was my inspiration for giving Firefox the old college try. I've used it off and on but have always ended up preferring IE.

This time though, I took the time to get a few themes and add-ons and customize everything the way that I wanted it to look. It's pretty slick and I think I've been converted.

The only major problem I've encountered was with some of the automatic updates. I had everything just like I wanted it and Firefox asked if I wanted to install an update, which I did but it then destroyed my setup and I had to clean out all remnants of Firefox anywhere on my computer in order to finally get back somewhere near to where I was.

Other than that - only time will tell.

Doughy said...

The crash that you are explaining may not be due to firefox, but to one of the 3rd party extensions that you installed.

Next time that happens, try running firefox in "Safe Mode" which should be under the same directory of your installation. Safe Mode boots up firefox without starting the extensions or themes, so you can remove the ones causing the problem. Then, restart and things should be good.