Yesterday I was shamed into cleaning-out and optimizing my 9 year old daughters XP box. So I brought it upstairs and worked on it, intermittently, taking short breaks from my Windows 7 machine.
Installed XP3, ‘Tune Up Utilities’ (which I promptly de-installed since I was totally underwhelmed), System Mechanic 9.5.3 (and yes, it is not 100% clean on XP either, especially when it discovered it had to de-install System Mechanic 4.x), D-Link drivers etc. Went to get her the latest FireFox and saw the 3.6b5 (beta). Installed it. At first blush it feels faster. I used it a fair amount on her box last night. She used it this morning. She grudgingly admitted that everything is a bit faster. She wants me to get her a new XP. Since I just bought her a rather fancy Sony digital camera … she can wait.
The FireFox 3.6b5 release notes claim that this release will be faster. We will see.
Since I rarely, if ever, use IE 8, I didn’t even know this. But I happened to read an article yesterday that was saying that the biggest differentiating feature of IE 8 over FireFox, particularly when it came to Windows 7, was the thumbnail preview feature for the IE tabs — mimicking the thumbnail preview of the Windows 7 Task Bar. Though I haven’t seen it, and I won’t fire up IE 8 just to get a gander of it, I will confess that that sounds cute. Another feather in the cap for Microsoft. Not much you to me, however. Though I invariably have at least 12 open tabs, across two instances of FireFox, one instance on each of my two monitors, on the whole I know exactly what each tab is and where to find it. Much of it because I have a protocol for the tabs, and have fixed tabs opened in the same sequence each day. Yes, I am boring and predictable like that. I also have fairly good short-term memory — which also why I don’t use the Windows 7 ‘sticky notes.’
Well, my daughter had both IE 8 (the latest) and FireFox 3.6b5 on her machine all day today. Since she has a lot of new PC stuff to play with she has been using the PC quite a bit. Mid-morning I told her to swicth over to IE. Even told her that it might be quicker than FireFox. Earlier this evening she told me that “Na, IE isn’t faster.” Later tonight she informed me that she doesn’t like IE and is going back to FireFox. Now this was without any influence of my part — thought it is true that she see both her mother and I using FireFox. But, you can’t argue on the subjective judgment of a 9 year old when it comes to Web browsers.
Happy New Year. All the best.
P.S. Though Mozilla still, inexplicably, hasn’t added Windows 7 to the list of Windows supported by FireFox 3.5 (and 3.6) … take my word … 3.5 works FINE with Windows 7 Professional.