The dumbing down of Firefox

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by HAN, Mar 22, 2013.

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  1. HAN

    HAN Registered Member

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    I ran across this blog post. http://limi.net/checkboxes-that-kill

    I could not believe it! This person is being allowed input on Firefox's design! Ideas like his is what will kill off Firefox (IMO). I refuse to believe that having options is bad and that this is a problem with more than just a handful of users.

    To Alex Limi: Firefox's options are buried enough already to be safe for all users and are needed for the flexibility Firefox is known for. Leave them alone! If you must do something to justify your pay, add a RESET button.
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2013
  2. m00nbl00d

    m00nbl00d Registered Member

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    I suppose one of these days they will be thinking Maybe more than 90% of users won't be accessing websites other than Facebook and Youtube, so let's not allow connections to other websites.

    :D
     
  3. moontan

    moontan Registered Member

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    from the article:

    well, don't disable javascripts then.
    javascripts is not disabled by default.

    i don't know what point the author is trying to make, unless this one maybe:
    if you play around in a program Options/Settings and play with stuff you don't understand you're gonna break stuff. lol

    that's quite the revelation there. ;)
     
  4. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

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    Well, I'm no expert, but surely if you check a box or click a radio button in Options & then find that you've broken the Internet, the unchecking &/or unclicking of the offending boxes/buttons should 'unbreak' the Internet.

    I agree with the worries about 'dummification' though, it is a particularly scary trend.

    I just thought it was a preparation for the upcoming & inevitable zombie apocalypse.
     
  5. moontan

    moontan Registered Member

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    anyway, the author's 'beef' seem directed at Firefox.

    every browsers have settings that will break the Internet if someone plays with forces one doesn't understand. lol
     
  6. AlexC

    AlexC Registered Member

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    Well, that´s the only thing i can think either :blink:
     
  7. TheWindBringeth

    TheWindBringeth Registered Member

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    Ironically, Firefox's permissions interface and the related options are one of its biggest problems. It isn't that you can break things. It is that you can't break as many things, and with precision, as a security oriented user would want to. So we have to turn to N different extensions and manage things in N difference places. Extensions are great, but driving essential/core control features out of the product and into extensions really isn't the way to go.
     
  8. Cimmerian

    Cimmerian Registered Member

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    Good point. A little common sense should lead anyone who has changed & messed something up to this conclusion.
    Another point worth mentioning, is that your average Joe probably doesn't even bother accessing the options panel, and just uses Firefox "out of the box" any way.
     
  9. BoerenkoolMetWorst

    BoerenkoolMetWorst Registered Member

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    I like Firefox because of it's configurability, hope this guy doesn't kill it.

    Yes, many products dumb down options for the average Joe, but most of them never even open the options panel..
     
  10. moontan

    moontan Registered Member

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    probably the same kind of people who think their file just magically disappeared if it didn't save to the Desktop or My Documents. :D
     
  11. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

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    I was that 'average Joe' for months when I first downloaded Firefox. Then I discovered 'Options' ... after that there was no going back. ;)
     
  12. JohnBurns

    JohnBurns Registered Member

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    I was one of the people who used Firefox - and after a time I had too many add-on's. I paid for that with speed decrease, which I did not like at all. I no longer have Firefox on my PC's. I am presently using only Google Chrome or Internet Explorer 10, both of which many people criticize also. I guess it all comes down to what is important to the user and which they relate to best. For me, Firefox is not currently my preference. I don't believe it is more secure or as fast.
     
  13. jo3blac1

    jo3blac1 Registered Member

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    To Alex Limi: Please don't kill FF
     
  14. safeguy

    safeguy Registered Member

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    I get what the author is trying to say but the 1st line itself backfires on his argument.

    Notice that I purposely highlight on the word "if". That should have been a big "IF". It seems to me that the author is assuming/implying that the "few hundred million individuals" will click on those buttons. If (pun intended) that's the case, he just managed to "kill" (another pun intended) his own argument.

    The check-boxes and options themselves don't "kill the product". It's the people that do not understand the implication of fiddling with the settings and yet have "itchy hands" and still do it blindly for no reason. The author's argument is that by 'dumbing down' the interface, it would lead to less of such occurrences. While I hope he is right, I doubt it. People can go to amazing lengths if they wish to prove their stupidity.
     
  15. Sully

    Sully Registered Member

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    Button clicker:
    I don't know much about computers, but I sure like to change things the way I think is best. Why is it broke now, and why would you let me change things. Please, can't you just put a button on the screen that gives me options to change my colors and nothing else, so I don't break it again?

    Geek:
    Dude, where is the option to bypass a proxy for local addresses? Come on, this is ridiculous, you only let me change the colors? I am switching to a browser that gives me some real options.

    Isn't this one of Murphy's Laws?

    Sul.
     
  16. allizomeniz

    allizomeniz Registered Member

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    Mozilla's made it clear for some time now that their user base is now mostly ordinary people (i.e., not techies), but I have to wonder just how true that is. And I especially wonder if the supposed shift occurred spontaneously of if Mozilla's in the middle of a marketing campaign designed to attract a new base.

    I think what bugs me the most about the article is where he says, "It’s our job as a browser to keep you safe, we shouldn’t outsource this to individuals." That seems pretty arrogant if you ask me. Sure the browser has some responsibility, but if the individual end user isn't ultimately responsible for their own security I don't know who is. I'll bet the farm that if your bank account got hacked and you took Mozilla to court, their defense would be "we're not responsible!" :D And if they want to outsource security to add-ons, that's just shifting responsibility to other individuals, the very thing he says they shouldn't do!

    The one thing he said that makes sense to me is a lot of settings that are currently in the interface could be moved to about:config. You could do that without having to involve yet more add-ons. That would satisfy everyone I'd say.
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2013
  17. TheWindBringeth

    TheWindBringeth Registered Member

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    Most settings are already accessible via about:config, user.js, and autoconfig files. Where that applies the idea just boils down to removing/forgoing helpful interfaces for manipulating them. Other things, including some site-specific data and cert data, is in database files I think. I'm not sure the latter would lend itself to being brought into preferences. Even if there were such opportunities, I get the feeling that this guy would work against them.
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2013
  18. lodore

    lodore Registered Member

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    If it wasnt for techies and the sort of people who read this type of forum most people wouldn't of even heard of firefox and would still use IE.
    chrome became successful because of advertised on their website.

    if firefox gets dumbed down then the core users will not use it and will move on to another browser.
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2013
  19. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

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    Possibly the un-dumbed down SeaMonkey? ;)
     
  20. SirDrexl

    SirDrexl Registered Member

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    This reminds me of when they wanted to remove the version number from the "About..." tab, because they felt we didn't need to know.
     
  21. JohnBurns

    JohnBurns Registered Member

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    I agree with you. I believe many FF users are similar to Apple users or Beemer drivers who think using that particular product puts them above the ignorant "masses". It's sort of a "status symbol" which makes them feel better - and that's ok with me. Whatever turns them on - lol!
     
  22. badkins79

    badkins79 Registered Member

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    It reminds me when they wanted to hide the address bar. I'm hoping user pushback sets them straight again.
     
  23. guest

    guest Guest

    Indeed, it is .. and VERY scary! And it makes me very ANGRY too! :ninja:

    I liked the time much better when you had to have or get knowledge to use something. Nowadays they seem to make products (software and hardware) more and more that are supposed to be easy enough to be used by dense monkeys. And we people with "skills" acquired over decades are left behind as outdated or something like that. - I show all those vendors which eliminate choice (for "power users" like me) my finger if they don't care about me anymore, be sure about that! *puppy*

    I love Firefox/Aurora the way it is and they shouldn't try to make a problem out of available options because that is only an invented problem. Make a side product for total dummies maybe, as an alternative if you have too! (You don't). But please don't try to force stuff on all of us that we don't like. Cutting down options is never a good thing and using force is even worse. At least ask Redmond before you do that about how well that turned out for them. :p
     
  24. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

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    I doubt that most Firefox users view themselves as using a 'status symbol', like a BMW or a Macbook, as Firefox is actually freeware. In fact it is far more egalitarian in that respect. As a whole I should imagine that many Fx users just use it as it is a reliable, customisable & efficient browser which fulfils their general surfing needs. I can't speak for the 'ignorant masses' as I am not really sure how they could be defined. I do believe that the vast majority of people online just use the browser that comes with their own particular operating system. I first started using Firefox out of desperation when I discovered IE 7 to be painfully slow on my system at the time. Ever since I have installed Fx on every computer that I own. I still rate it as the overall best browser on the Net. I don't feel it to be elitist to use it at all.
     
  25. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

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    Yes, I agree completely. This is a created/invented problem that actually isn't a problem at all; to anyone.
     
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