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Firefox 6.0

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That’s right, Mozilla has artificially jacked up Firefox’s version number again, and, with the release of Firefox 6.0, as with the release of Firefox 5.0, not much has changed. Along with some stability- and security-related fixes, Firefox 6.0 sports a slightly sleeker look for the site identity block (to the left of the page URL in the address bar). Plus, in the latest episode of “Bug or Feature?” Firefox 6.0’s address bar now grays out everything but the domain name of the currently loaded page, making it harder to read. Also new is an interactive JavaScript prototyping environment for developers: choose Tools > Web Developer > Scratchpad (the Web Developer menu item is also new; it collects several development-related commands). Mozilla also claims to have improved the discoverability of Firefox Sync, the usability of the Web Console, and browser startup time when using the tab-grouping feature Panorama. Apart from the silly change to the address bar, there’s nothing really wrong with Firefox 6.0, as long as you think of it as version 4.2. (Free, 28.1 MB, release notes)

 

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Comments about Firefox 6.0
(Comments are closed.)

Michael E. Cohen  An apple icon for a TidBITS Staffer 2011-08-19 20:50
I suppose the address bar graying of everything but the URL's domain is meant to be a security measure of sorts (makes it slightly easier for someone to see who's really serving the current page), but, if so, most of those users who would think to verify the domain serving a page probably have little trouble reading URLs in the first place.

However, gray text in the interface usually indicates static text, which is not the case for URLs in the Firefox address bar. In the "Bug or Feature" contest this ranks as a fug (kind of a feature, but mostly a bug). Also known as a UAHSE (usability analyst's head-space error).
Andras Salamon  2011-08-23 08:10
The address bar gray can be disabled in about:config by changing browser.urlbar.formatting.enabled to false.
Adam Engst  An apple icon for a TidBITS Staffer 2011-08-23 13:26
Oh, that's good news - thanks for the tip!