Australian Dictionary for Firefox 2

Yesterday I summarized my impressions of Firefox 2. In that summary I was said that one of my favourite features of the new version was the real time spell checking. I also said that I hoped that in time we would see custom dictionaries come online for users. Who was I kidding, this is the open source community and I should have remembered just how innovative it is.

So I was browsing the newest Firefox extensions (I should say “add-ons” but I can’t stand it) and I noticed that in the last couple of days that some different dictionaries were coming online. Such as the “Icelandic dictionary for Firefox 2.0 spell checker” and that got me thinking… Hell, if Iceland have a custom dictionary then us Aussies should have one! Yup; sure enough the English (Australian) Dictionary by Cameron is available now. Just a note though, you have to right click within an editing field and select the dictionary that you want Firefox to use as it stays as the default otherwise.

In addition to my thoughts yesterday //engtech had a take on the fox as well. It is good to see what others think of the new version. I have also removed the close tab X from the individual tabs thanks to the post. Now I have no close tab buttons at all which is great. Why I did this is because tonight on this post when I clicked the tab that this post was in I almost closed it, that would have been bad. Plus I did not like the way they looked in my theme at all, Yuk.

The other thing is that I had no idea that WordPress had an “Advanced Post Editor”! Thanks //engtech for the tip. If you are a user, you can make these tools visible in the WYSIWYG post editor by pressing Alt-Shift-V. The tool bar has some nice features that might come in useful in the future.

Advanced Editing Tool bar for WordPress

Firefox 2, First Impressions

So I have now installed and have been using Firefox 2 for the last two hours. Here are my first impressions in short hand.

  • Installing was a breeze (as you might expect)
  • The process of making my extensions work was also fairly easy
  • The seamless importing of my bookmarks and extensions was appreciated
  • I had no trouble with my theme that I love working as an update was made (Noia 2.0 (eXtreme). Ironically I am yet to see the new default theme in action.
  • I did have some trouble getting the Tool Bar for RoboForm to be put back where I last saw it. I ended up having to install a new version and it seemed to just appear. I have no idea as to if this was a compatibility issue or something else.
  • I especially like the integration of my RSS reader into Firefox. This is a nice touch as it adds to the accessibility of RSS feeds to users, for me it just makes life a lot easier.
  • The auto fill for searching is great and seems to work, although I have not used it a lot yet
  • Better management of the search plugins is good. Previously deleting a search was acomplished with an “addon” (I hate the new name for extensions!)
  • I hate the red X in the tabs, as I said in a previous post you can close tabs with a middle click (mouse wheel) and I could not see the point of putting it in. It makes my theme look a little dirty and not quite as slick
  • The extra security features are a nice inclusion and the more advanced settings appreciated
  • But by far my most appreciated and most used feature in the last two hours is the inbuilt spell checker for typed words on a page, in real time. I can not spell – period. This feature works in comments, blog posting in an AJAX interface, just about everything! So far has been right every time! I love it. I sincerely hope that in time this feature improves with country specific dictionaries and such. Although at present you can add words to a custom dictionary

While there is a lot more that could be said, these are the things that have struck me over the last couple of hours. I like Firefox 2 and I am looking forward to using the features. Damn this spell check is good, post spell checked already…

Great work from the Mozilla crew yet again. The best browser just got better.

Firefox 2

Firefox 2 Out Now!

I was just reading that Firefox 2 is due out tomorrow. But I have a hot tip for you… It is already there!

Firefox 2 is available right now on their FTP server [link removed, see comments]. So get in quick while the load will be smaller because they have not publicized it yet.

If you are not comfortable using FTP the great guys over at Cybernet News have put together a downloader, just select the language from the drop-down and click your Operating System of choice and it should come right at you as a download.

Officially the new version will not be out until tomorrow, if you want to wait. But as I said the rush will be on then!

Me I am way too tired to tackle it today. That is a job for tomorrow, but I will definitely check it out this week so we can talk about it on the podcast next week. I have been told also that nearly all of the popular extensions are supported in Firefox 2, which is good to know.

If you happen to come across an extension that is not supported then there are ways around it. I have collected articles of the RSS that will come in handy and this post: Firefox 2: Making your old extensions work from Download Squad in September will have all the tools and tips to help you out. Hope that helps.

UPDATE: Due to the blog post from Mozilla, the link to the FTP Server has been removed from this post. However, you can now officially download Firefox 2 from Mozilla. I will state however that I some what agree with some of the sentiments expressed in the comments of the post.

Microsoft Internet Explorer Seems More Broken than Ever

IE LogoI know that I rant about the uselessness of Internet Explorer and the virtues of Firefox. That has not changed but it would seem that Internet Explorer is more broken now than it ever has been.

You might be wondering why I have said that. Since my discovery of Firefox I have not used Internet Explorer, for anything. I mean nothing, if a site does not let me view their content in Firefox; I don't bother. Or if I really have to I use the IETab extension for Firefox. So lately I have had cause to test a webpage using Internet Explorer and a few other things, much to my disgust. What I have noticed is that there are so many images, icons, logos, pictures and other elements that just will not load in Internet explorer, they display the box with the red X in the top. The big one being the cool new player we have on the podcast homepage fails to load! When the majority of people surfing the web are doing it in IE that's a big deal!

Is this because the Microsoft boys are concentrating on the up and coming release of Internet Explorer 7 and neglecting this version. Or perhaps it is the fact that the sites that I frequent are sites that "geeks" use and therefore the sites are optimised for Firefox. I just have no clue really. I will say that when I was writing the Global Geek Podcast Homepage, it was much easier to code it for Firefox than Internet Explorer, by a long shot. We are currently doing a rebuild of the site and that continues to be the case. Suffice to say that the site will be optimised for Firefox, yes you will be able to load it in IE but it will not be as pretty.
Having said all that the things that refuse to load in IE are not critical to the site but eh, it is a browser; it is supposed to do it! This is however what we have com to expect from this browser.

So to this just adds to reasons not to use IE, along with the fact that Firefox is a superior browser, both for functionality and form. In addition to the fact that it is highly customisable and is more secure.

Be smart, make the switch.

Firefox Bar