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Re: Web browsers for Linux (was: Re: Netscape Bus Error)

On Wed, Aug 16, 2000 at 04:48:02AM -0300, Rogerio Brito wrote:

> Not to mention that this implies that Mozilla is *slow* (since
> it doesn't fit in core), depending on what it is doing (for
> basic navigation, it is ok; opening a new window makes it
> slow; navigating through the Preferences menus is even
> *slower*).

Like I have said before, this is constantly improving. The other day I
was surfing the web, and as I was going to shut Mozilla down I ended up
closing window after window. As it was, I had had in total 5 different
windows open, and I hadn't noticed any considerable slowdown. This is
with the M18 build on a 233Mhz K6 with 64 megs of RAM, so my machine is
rather modest too. When I look back at the days when I used to run
Netscape I seem to remember that opening more than one windows was
pretty much asking for a crash.

People also seem to forget that performance has been very much a
secondary priority up until now. The big work so far has been to get
features in and fix bugs. Now that most features are in the performance
work can begin, and I have full trust in that the Mozilla team will do
an excellent job optimizing it. I have seen some incredible speed-ups
in the past, so I know just how much things can improve.

> I don't know why the rationale of such a complex application is. Not
> even making considerations from a usability standpoint, the Mozilla
> coordination must have nightmares every single night for maintaining
> such a huge project. One of the basic laws of engineering is the KISS
> principle, of course

I agree that the Mozilla team has given themselves a huge task by
choosing to make an entire communicator suit, and not just a browser.
I myself don't want Mozilla Mail; I use Mutt for that just like you do. 
I don't want a USENET reader nor a IRC client in my browser either.
What you have to remember though is that you have the option of exactly
what components you want to install. If you only want to install the
browser you can do so. I am pretty sure that we will see a browser-only
debian package of Mozilla pretty soon, and a mailnews package for those
who want that. Looking at mail headers over the years have tought me
that there still are quiet a lot of people who seam to like using 
Netscape to handle their mail, and I think it's nice to give those
people that option.

But don't get me wrong, I applaud alternatives like Galeon and similair
projects. They are using what many feel is the best thing the Mozilla
team has created, namely Gecko. This rendering engine has also seen
some big improvements on the Linux side recently in M18, closing the
gap to the Windows build.

Although I must admit that having to install around 20 different
packages (libgnome32 and friends) in order to be able to run Galeon
doesn't strike me as very light weight nor nice from a users
standpoint, but who am I to judge?:-)

So to summarize, it is great to have many choices to choose from when
deciding what browser or communication suit you want to use. We should
be glad that we have that choice, instead of complaing about the
slowness of one project or the other. Don't forget that the Mozilla
team created Gecko, and the word "slow" isn't the first one that pops
up in my mind when I think of it.

// André

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