[linux-elitists] Yet another mozilla atrocity

J. Paul Reed preed@sigkill.com
Mon Sep 29 02:47:04 PDT 2003

On 28 Sep 2003 at 16:56:25, Aaron Lehmann arranged the bits on my disk to say:

> I've had many disputes with the mozilla team over the years. The foremost
> and most obvious one is over the use of XUL, which is a pile of shit.

And what would *you* have done?

I'm willing to bet you're going to give an incomplete answer to that
question, mainly because the question that is implied by asking such a
question is "What were the requirements?"

Do you even know what the requirements were?

> Instead of migrating to an interface that wasn't based on XML and
> javascript, the idea was to make the interface spartan to gain a speedup.

*Actually*, that wasn't really the idea at all. Part of the reason Phoenix
(it's called Firebird now, actually) is faster is because it pulls some of
the rendering back into GTK-land.

> A good example of this is the Preferences dialog, which lacked many
> important option. When I talked to developers about this, they stated
> that they didn't intend to add many of them. 

Do an "about:config" and you'll suddenly realize why they didn't put in
little slider bars, checkboxes and input fields for each configurable
Mozilla feature.

And actually, you can edit those preferences directly via about:config so
you don't have to get your hands dirty with vi (or emacs), and it will even
save them in prefs.js for you.

> The de-facto example was favicon.ico support. It was enabled by default
> because "everybody wants it, right?" IIRC for a long time it wasn't even
> possible to disable it through the configuration file. It might be
> possible now, but I'm not sure offhand because I don't use
> Phoenix/Firebird. 

Turn browser.chrome.favicons and browser.chrome.site_icons to 'off.'

> I remember when they imported a feature that made it zoom images to the
> full browser window when viewing them. Does this remind anyone of IE?
> Anyway, they turned it on by default and made it difficult or impossible
> to turn off. 

They didn't.

browser.enable_automatic_image_resizing = false.

And the option in Mozilla (which has UI for it, since you were bitching
about preferences not having UI) is in
Edit->Preferences->Browser->Appearance; check the 'Enable automatic image
resizing' box as necessary.

> like "smooth scrolling" and countless others I haven't had the
> displeasure of using. 

general.smoothScroll -> false. 

> Oh, and also the sidebar.  Fuck that. It's yet another stupid feature
> stolen from IE that I prefer not to use but activate by accident all the
> time. I don't know of a way to turn it off.

In Mozilla, View -> Show/hide -> Sidebar

In Firebird, it's hidden by default, and requires a couple of menubar
clicks to be displayed.

> This brings me to the latest problem. I was unable to access a service
> that was running on a nonstandard port. I got a useless message saying
> "this port has been blocked for security reasons". It turns out that
> this is considered a feature, for no reason that I can understand. It
> is described at http://www.mozilla.org/projects/netlib/PortBanning.html. 

What you failed to mention was that this was to address a security issue
published by CERT. You also failed to mention bug 85601, which is "User
interface to allow connections to blocked ports." You can also read a
discussion of the pros and cons of various implementations of this feature

All in all, it sounds to me like you're bitching without having done *any*
research on how to fix your problems, every single one of which, I might
add, looks to be easily remedied.

If spending 15 minutes with Google or on IRC and editing a text-based
configuration file is too "elitist" for you, might I suggest another
audience to bitch to?

J. Paul Reed -- 0xDF8708F8 || preed@sigkill.com || web.sigkill.com/preed
To hold on to sanity too tight is insane.   -- Nick Falzone, Pushing Tin

I use PGP; you should use PGP too... if only to piss off John Ashcroft

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