Mozilla not fit for office use ?
February 12, 2005 3:16 AM   Subscribe

Mozilla not fit for general use yet there are a number of glaring problems with the browser that simply make it a no-go for lots of home and office use. Some of these bugs have been open since 2002.
Some as simple as printing not working on many websites created with 3rd party website building tools, yet some mozilla developers expect you to change your code so it works in mozilla while others claim anyone working on printing engine were with netscape and now no longer are contactable. Where does this leave mozilla? I know of atleast one office that had to change back to internet explorer so they could print from websites correctly. How many others are there? Why is there so much hype about mozilla/firefox being so great yet it has some really critical problems like dataloss when printing? How do we address this? How do we resource the programmers needed to fix this?
posted by leighm (56 comments total)

This post was deleted for the following reason: screeds are for your own blog. interesting websites are for metafilter

Well, you seem to have spent a lot of time on this bug, since your name appears a lot on the page you are linking to. Perhaps you should have spent it more wisely and fixed it yourself.
posted by sebas at 3:24 AM on February 12, 2005

Why is there so much hype about mozilla/firefox being so great yet it has some really critical problems like dataloss when printing?

Because Internet Explorer is just -that- much worse. I really wish I understood the mindset behind some of IE's really fucking retarded rendering quirks.
posted by Josh Zhixel at 3:26 AM on February 12, 2005

Sebas, thats EXACTLY the thing with open source, this kind of rendering engine is increbily complex and i would not even know where to start, atleast with commercial apps you have a central place to hassle and get it fixed, why dont you fix it?
Everyone says "well you can fix it yourself" but you know what, you cant. only a handful of people would know where to begin "fixing"
posted by leighm at 3:28 AM on February 12, 2005

So find someone that can begin fixing it. If this bug is very important to you, which it appears to be, I think you'll be able to find someone who can fix it for a few hundred dollars.
posted by sebas at 3:30 AM on February 12, 2005

You pick your poison.

Firefox (or Mozilla, they use the same rendering engine) may not render all web sites.

But IE leaves me open to 1001 exploits.

And Firefox has tabs, and extensions like "Remove this object" (great for animated gifs and obnoxious bulletin board "avatars") and another to prevent embedded Flash from auto-playing, and great themes like the ultra-tiny Littlefox.

Oh, and there's the "Display this page in IE" extension that allows me to run IE for a particular page if I really need it.

If you really want to address the problems in Mozilla, it's open source: get the CVS and hack away.
posted by orthogonality at 3:33 AM on February 12, 2005

... yet some mozilla developers expect you to change your code so it works in mozilla ...

Sorta like M$ forcing people to use klunky work-arounds instead of fixing their braindead CSS implimentation (that cynics might conclude was done on purpose).

Anyway, MS FUD aside, I don't really think it's exactly a "no-go" with the computer literate. Indeed, I can't think of a single person who prefers IE over Firefox.
posted by RavinDave at 3:34 AM on February 12, 2005

Sorry, I come off as a bit grumpy. I understand your frustration, because you seem to need this functionality in order for the program to be of use to you. However the wording of the FPP seems a bit strong to me. I am using Firefox without any problems, however I don't even have a printer at home.

Good luck with finding a solution!
posted by sebas at 3:38 AM on February 12, 2005

posted by grouse at 3:45 AM on February 12, 2005

You know, I've been loosely involved with open source stuff since '94 or so, maybe late '93. (wasn't paying that much attention at the time :) ). I'm not really a programmer, but I'm a good sysadmin type, and I've built and maintained good-sized Linux networks. So I'm not speaking from ignorance here.

Attitudes like sebas' just drive me insane. "If it were really important to you, you'd fit ix yourself". And they ignore the fact that the software has very real problems. Over and over and over I see this in open source... if the problem is hard to fix, then it is dismissed and the user is flamed.

It apparently has been lost in the murky past of the Internet, but back in, oh, about 98 or 99, I posted a slashdot comment to the effect that Linux couldn't really be trusted for the enterprise, because the filesystem was so fragile. Linux itself never crashed, but if you had a power or a hardware failure, it was very, very easy to lose files. Ext2 was just a terrible filesystem. It was fast, but very fragile.

I couldn't believe the replies I got. "You're an idiot, you should just be using a disk editor and restoring your superblock from one of the several alternates on the disk. Moron." And "what kind of an dumbass are you to not run a computer on a UPS?" I don't think I got ONE USEFUL RESPONSE out of that thread... everyone was blasing ME for being stupid, and "using the computer the wrong way."

I found it very amusing when I posted, a few years later, about journaled filesystems and what a big improvement they were, and immediately everyone piled on and agreed with me, and all talked about how fragile and terrible ext2 was in comparison. Even back then, my original thread had been lost in antiquity, so I couldn't easily point out the earlier, willful blindness to the problem.

I believe this happens because the developers get a big emotional investment in their product, and don't like to be told it's lacking in some area. It seems to be lessening up now, but for years there was this insane zealotry about open source in general and Linux in particular. And woe betide you if you tried to say that things should be done differently.

I also strongly suspect that the people who blast you and tell you to fix it yourself, mostly ARE NOT the ones doing the heavy lifting. Part of the problem with feature requests for open source software is that it's hard to determine exactly who one should talk to. It's quite easy to get flamed by people totally unrelated to the main development team.

It does seem to be getting better, though. The Linux 2.6 kernel development process is terribly broken and brain dead... the kernel devs refuse to do a feature freeze and just keep stuffing new things down our collective throats, like it or not. I posted about this recently (also on Slashdot) and I think only one person flamed me for daring to criticize a free product. I actually got a bunch of useful, supportive comments, which I'm still slightly amazed about. Maybe the open source community is growing up a bit.

I'm not saying that a printing problem in Mozilla is anywhere near as severe as a data-loss bug in a filesystem, but it is annoying to at least some people. Not all of us have the technical chops to fix this stuff ourselves, but we're still perfectly capable ot determining that something is broken and needs fixing. Myself, I donate money to projects I like, but I couldn't afford 'several hundred dollars' to fix printing in Mozilla. That would be one damn expensive free browser!

Over the years, I've spent several thousand dollars on open-source related products and services, but that was mostly a little bit at a time. Expecting someone to find a developer and fund the addition of a feature is really not very reasonable.

That said, if this really matters to you, this comment was a good first step toward getting the problem fixed. Maybe you could put up a website and see if you can organize enough donations to get the feature implemented? This particular problem doesn't bother me, but I'd be willing to kick in a few bucks anyway.
posted by Malor at 3:56 AM on February 12, 2005

Indeed, I can't think of a single person who prefers IE over Firefox.

I do, so there's one.

Or rather, the IE renderer, which is the only bit I really like, wrapped in the Maxthon browser shell.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 3:56 AM on February 12, 2005

I'm not even sure that this is such a huge bug. We're having no problems printing from Firefox here at fixedgear central. If one really desperately need to print from a web page could one not just 'print screen' and then paste it into something? No worse than the other IE workarounds.
posted by fixedgear at 3:58 AM on February 12, 2005

Yeh thats the thing that annoyed me the most, that moved me from just going "oh well yeh mozilla is still a work under progress" was all the ads (even in the newspapers) for it, its just insane that they'de try to boost street cred at this point, If people use mozilla/FF stuff now and it doesnt workout for them 100% then they will forever remember mozilla as the browser that didnt quite work, no matter what happens in future releases.
And loosing pages when printing is a serious issue it is in-effect "data loss"
posted by leighm at 4:02 AM on February 12, 2005

leighm: First off, could you phrase your stuff a bit less trollish? You come across as some rabid IE user who hates how much attention the mozilla project has received (besides, the paper ads were for Firefox, not Mozilla. Albeit FF prolly exhibits this problem, too).

Secondly, it has nothing to do with printing, but rather more with the layout, as stated in the bug you link to twice.

Thirdly, you mention the fact that "things don't work out for them 100%" - name one browser that does that? Certainly ain't IE, even if that browser doesn't run into your pet printing peeve.

Fourthly, you wouldn't believe how many bugs are still open from even before 2002. Does that mean Mozilla is a bug-riddled piece of software? Nope.
posted by slater at 4:08 AM on February 12, 2005

Attitudes like sebas' just drive me insane

It was a comment, not an attitude. My attitude is that if you want to use a piece of software, in this case a browser, you pick the one that is best for you. If we were talking about commercial software and you mentioned that you had pestered this company for a few years to fix a bug and nothing had happened most of the comments would have told you that there are other options out there.

There is a bug that developers do not seem to find important and it is functionality you need. If you found a bug in commercial software and the company who develops it told you that it was not important enough for them to fix it you would look for alternatives.

You seem to like the Mozilla project enough to give them the benefit of the doubt and want to support them. That is good as an individual, but if your company wants to use it in their daily business they have to pick the right tool for the job. I use several commercial and open source products for my job, but my basis for using them is functional, if the product does the job good I use it. If it's free it's a benefit.
posted by sebas at 4:16 AM on February 12, 2005

Leighm gets his mozilla hate on
posted by slater at 4:17 AM on February 12, 2005

As stavros mentioned, Maxthon uses the IE renderer. It has tabbed browsing and popup blocking (and is free).
posted by republican at 4:17 AM on February 12, 2005

slater, I think you're confusing trolling and conviction. Great comment, Malor.
posted by nthdegx at 4:18 AM on February 12, 2005

Also one of the benefits of open source is that you have access to the source if you need to make changes. That is a great benefit, but if you can not do anything with it than the software might as well be closed source for you.

Weigh pros and cons, and choose the best one for you.
posted by sebas at 4:20 AM on February 12, 2005

nthdegx: i'd say conviction+incendiary commentary style = trolling, tho ymmv...
posted by slater at 4:20 AM on February 12, 2005

um ok, well i dont know why everyones getting so shitted at me, its a pretty serious issue that effects a lot of people ?

Malor, The problem still remains, how do we find people with the skillset to be able to solve this problem so we can give them some cash to fix it?
posted by leighm at 4:21 AM on February 12, 2005

nthdegx, when he starts talking about "GeekWankFeeature [sic]" or "mozilla weenies" it's hard to see it as honest conviction.

leighm, it's sad that Mozilla is not perfect, and it's sad that this bug hasn't been fixed yet. But frothing at the mouth will not fix it. If you want to pay someone to fix it, you don't have to go through official channels or anything- find a good programmer and pay him. The nice thing about open source is that anyone can work on it, for love or for money.
posted by Maxson at 4:26 AM on February 12, 2005

As a web developer I recommend Mozilla/Firefox to all my corporate clients and personal friends and family (I guess we're all "weenies" and thus our particular needs and experience, though different, doesn't really count.)

I use CSS (which is not Mozilla code) for printing pages and rarely bother with absolute positioned content so it's not an issue for me. I realize that the printed page is a different beast and create the CSS and HTML (all within standards) accordingly. The whole content seperated from presentation thing as it were.

Report backs have all been favourable. Have never had a problem but I do recognize that Moz/Firefox does have bugs, as does IE. Pick your poison. One's preference does not dictate... and experience and needs vary. Hopefully the bug gets fixed, and the others. The same is true of the other browsers as well. A large problem is accomodating those who don't bother to code sites to standards, but this is beyond anyone's control of course.

One has to change one's code in IE as well, particularly in regard to CSS. The level of annoyance varies and again doesn't deride or take priority over the differing level of annoyance that you and I may have.
posted by juiceCake at 4:46 AM on February 12, 2005

Is the "div: position absolute" non standard ?
posted by leighm at 4:51 AM on February 12, 2005

do you work for microsoft ?
posted by sgt.serenity at 5:18 AM on February 12, 2005

They put bugs in software nowadays? Those crazy kids.
posted by boaz at 5:18 AM on February 12, 2005

leighm ... seems to me one could just save the page and open it up in ie ... or open ie, cut and paste the url from mozilla and print it from ie ... this kind of thing is really easy to work around ... so, why don't you?
posted by pyramid termite at 5:20 AM on February 12, 2005

There's a useful discussion lying under the flame-inducing rant above. But don't expect me to start it.

really critical problems like dataloss when printing

Data loss? You call that data loss???

Critical problems are things like gaping security holes (see MSIE, although Mozilla hasn't been completely free of them either) or, yes, actual data loss. This is just a problem. No adjective needed.
posted by stiggywigget at 5:23 AM on February 12, 2005

there, its in bold, i hope google finds it, fuck you mozilla.


Carrying a grudge, there? Seriously, use IE, nobody will mind.
posted by signal at 5:26 AM on February 12, 2005

do you work for microsoft ?

I was kinda assuming he worked for TTi Group, the company he linked in his post. Not that this post needed a self-link to suck.
posted by boaz at 5:36 AM on February 12, 2005

"If people use mozilla/FF stuff now and it doesnt workout for them 100% then they will forever remember mozilla as the browser that didnt quite work, no matter what happens in future releases"

This made me spit my morning coffee from laughter.

Have you ever thought that maybe people are sick of using IE because it doesn't work 100% of the time? For instance, I'm at work, which uses IE, and your first link wouldn't open. I had to close IE and reopen it to get it to follow through.

I would guess that some of the hostility you're getting is just a mirror of the hostility you seem to hold against Mozilla. I just don't see how blind obsequience and curtailing all competition will make IE a better product.

Would you care to elaborate on how that might be the case?
posted by Busithoth at 5:36 AM on February 12, 2005

Aparently i work for microsoft because im trying to raise some issues about mozilla that i think is inhibiting something would could truelying be excellent? grow up guys
posted by leighm at 5:37 AM on February 12, 2005

i work for a few companies as a contractor, so sorry for that link to a company, but i was hoping to atleast point out that it does effect some companies/peoples, otherwise ide probably get comments like... Indeed, I can't think of a single person who prefers IE over Firefox.
posted by leighm at 5:39 AM on February 12, 2005

While I think leighm's conclusion "Mozilla not fit for general use" is probably overstating the case a little, I nonetheless agree that the larger problem is a real one, namely: one of the problems with open source development is that, unless you can fix the problem yourself, you are forced to rely upon the "kindness of strangers" to get the problem fixed.

If the problem is a sufficiently large annoyance to a sufficiently large number of people, then there's a pretty good likelihood it will get fixed. Beyond that, it's a bit of a crapshoot. Maybe some lone programmer will fix the problem out of benevolence, or because they want the practice, or because they want the resulting code to be "perfect" in as many ways as possible, but ultimately, you're basically relying on altruism.

There was actually a time, "back in the day" (i.e. before the bubble burst) when I started to examine the possibility of starting a service that would allow the "monetization" of open source development - in other words, match up buyers of open-source-programmer time with sellers of programming talent and mediate the transfer of a "fee" (real cash, scrip, favors in kind, whatever) to address just these kinds of situations.

As envisioned, the service would have initially concentrated on getting device drivers built for obscure or proprietary peripherals, but the model seems to be generally applicable for situations such as leighm's. In other words, maybe no-one is interested in fixing leighm's bug out of the goodness of their heart, but maybe they would for, let's say, $50. Perhaps instead the marketplace would decide that the fix would cost not $50 but $1000 - then if the bug is important to 20 people @ $50 apiece, suddenly you have the basis for a viable transaction.

I have no doubt that there is an army of zealots who will see fit to denounce me in the harshest possible terms for daring to suggest sullying the open source movement with filthy lucre, but in the long run, I'm not sure I see a better way to solve problems like leighm's. Like it or not, open-source development is a marketplace, it just so happens that, to date, it's largely been a marketplace whose currency has been something other than cold, hard cash.

OTOH, maybe someone would like to help me write a business plan ...
posted by kcds at 5:50 AM on February 12, 2005

Take it the spell check doesn't work in IE, then?
posted by bonaldi at 5:50 AM on February 12, 2005

where is the ebay toolbar in mozialla?
and where is the right click "browse to" feature?
posted by halekon at 5:52 AM on February 12, 2005

kcds, I don't see how having to rely on the kindness of strangers is any worse than having to rely on the kindness of giant corporations.

Despite leighm's vehemence, this problem isn't one that affects lots of people, or else some of us might have heard of it before. It's certainly not close to something that makes Mozilla unfit for office use, since many offices like mine are using it fine -- apparently leighm's office has special requirements.

If the problem affected more people, it would be fixed, whether it was in a proprietary or open-source program. Since it doesn't, it's less likely to be -- again, in either case. At least with open source there's the possibility or doing something about it. With proprietary software, you're stuck regardless, even if you have the money or ability to fix the problem.
posted by Axaxaxas Mlö at 6:12 AM on February 12, 2005

leighm sorta reminds me of Pat from Achewood.
posted by splatta at 6:16 AM on February 12, 2005

Fuck you, Mozilla! SCREW you!
posted by Josh Zhixel at 6:21 AM on February 12, 2005

Nice try Gates....
posted by jasn at 6:23 AM on February 12, 2005

apparently i work for microsoft because im trying to raise some issues about mozilla that i think is inhibiting something would could truelying be excellent?
You raise exactly one issue. There are many open bugs in the Mozilla Bugzilla repository. We get the point, you think this issues is very important. So important, in fact, you advocate not using the product and using a competitive product that has been the cause of countless viruses, trojans, adware and other malware to damage computers the world over. (By damage, I mean lost files, lost productivity and at worst, monetary damage in the form of software or hardware purchases.)

There are numerous workarounds, some of which have been detailed in this thread. Sure, it can be irritating to have to open up Opera when a page doesn't print right, but in no way would I recommend that anyone use Internet Explorer over Firefox, Mozilla, Opera, lynx or even wget. I've removed tens of thousands of infected files from customers machines, seen people lose irreplaceable files and seen people lose their internet access simply because they used IE. If the worst thing about Firefox is that you occasionally waste a few sheets of paper, you have clearly not been following the development of the browser very closely.

Firefox and Mozilla are already excellent products, even if they have bugs in them. It's not like the alternatives don't have bugs.
or else some of us might have heard of it before
I was a CC on this bug years ago, but I just worked around it locally. It's not that this bug isn't known by those in the community, it's just not that big of a deal to most people. On the other hand, to some people who produce web pages that can only be printed in non-Mozilla based products, it's a larger issue, especially if they want to support Mozilla but it won't print their web page.
posted by sequential at 6:23 AM on February 12, 2005

Josh Zhixel: Yes!
posted by splatta at 6:38 AM on February 12, 2005

kcds: The pay-for-free software-development idea has been tried. It didn't go so well that time. I'm not saying it'll never work, but my personal hunch is that it's unlikely. Meanwhile, free software will continue to be developed by an adhocracy of non-software companies with software needs, volunteers, hobbyists, enthusiasts, consultants, and the usual assortment of dirty long-haired kooks.

Free software is a marketplace, but I think the lesson of the last ten years is that there is no such thing as "A Free Software Business Model." There are, instead, a number of models that will work or fail on a case by case basis. Some projects are sexy enough to thrive without any formal monetary backing (Linux, Mozilla), some are important enough to enough money interests to be able to form their own development companies, either for-profit or non- (Apache, and the Apache Software Foundation). Some can find a niche in an existing market and thrive with a combination of volunteer support and paid consulting services (Scoop). Some projects will be run by one of those people with an infinite amount of energy and no sense of futility and will roll on with no support forever (can't think of one atm, but I'm sure they're numerous). And some projects that would have been cool to have will not find a developer community or a user community and will not make it.

It seems like perhaps the biggest mistake here has been the insane promotion of FireFox. That's always a dangerous thing to do, because for some reason when people are given something for free (especially when they have also been given assurances that it's better than the competition) they get much more upset if something about it isn't to their liking. I don't entirely understand it, but I've seen it too many times. My theory is that it's much easier to be critical of something you didn't pay for, because if you criticize something you paid for, you always have that associated implication that you were stupid to buy it. So you tend to focus on the good rather than the bad. But if it was free, you have nothing invested, so the tiniest flaw will always cause someone to blow up and declare it Worse Than Satan And Hitler's Bastard Nephew.

One workable way I've found to avoid this is to discourage users from using your product. Tell them it's alpha code, it's hard to install and requires lots of expertise to configure and operate, and it's not supported by anyone. Most people will just go use the competition's product, and flame the crap out of them when something doesn't work. But a few will use your stuff anyway, and when it's actually a lot better than you led them to believe, they'll be pleasantly surprised. A good proportion of them will also turn out to be programmers looking for a challenge, who will, if nurtured, eventually contribute back to you.

This kind of thing is always going to be courted by open source projects who set for themselves the goal of beating everyone else and having the most users. I've always wanted to have the best users, rather than the most. It's kept me sane. :-)
posted by rusty at 6:42 AM on February 12, 2005

I dont mean to downplay bugs, but come on leigh, but this is hardly the forum to air your grousings.

It also kinda amusing, that the original bug was filed about, and yet this whole thing is about not fit for office use.
posted by MrLint at 6:46 AM on February 12, 2005

I too am getting pretty fired up about this mozilla thing! someone should call the authorities!
posted by mcsweetie at 6:48 AM on February 12, 2005

You know, the problem isn't actually that Mozilla is broken, but instead that these web sites don't render correctly in any web browser that isn't IE on a PC (IE on the Mac is a different beast entirely). Both Mozilla-derivitives, and even more so the KHTML engine in Safari on the Mac, are trying to implement all of the standard, and do it correctly. If you listen, however, to people like Dave Hyatt who has worked on both engines, he'll discuss how so many people use the CSS spec in a totally incorrect way that they have to break their engine in thousands of ways to make sites for IE work.

Unfortunately this leaves us in a stale-mate. Either we force sites to fix their code so it works in multiple browsers---the way it should work if specs are to be encouraged---or we simply give up and say we all have to be stupid like IE. Yes, Safari and Mozilla have rendering bugs, but I find that it's often not the bugs that people are running into, but horribly bad code on the side of the site.

So which do you choose? One potentially lets a "thousand browsers bloom" with new ideas and strategies, like OmniWeb, Firefox, etc., and the other says "just use IE," which locks people into one platform, and creates the monoculture that has created the nasty spyware/adware/virus problem that we have today.
posted by petrilli at 6:48 AM on February 12, 2005

This is a great post.

Just last night I printed something in firefox, and I had to go back to Internet Explorer to get it to print right.

It's a major issue, topical, and worth talking about.

I find the knee jerk reactions from the firefox zealots surprising, considering they are for being open and transparent.
posted by Mean Mr. Bucket at 7:02 AM on February 12, 2005

I always thought there was sort of a gentlemen's agreement not to use open source projects' bug trackers against them. Quick, which has more open bugs: Firefox or IE? At least with open source you can find out if it's a bug, feature or PEBCAK.

Also, an FPP for a Mozilla bug? I've done that on my personal blog but I don't think it's needed here. I'm not saying that it's not a problem, or that it doesn't need to be fixed, just that this isn't really the right forum for it.
one of the problems with open source development is that, unless you can fix the problem yourself, you are forced to rely upon the "kindness of strangers" to get the problem fixed.
kcds: as others have pointed out, there's nothing stopping leighm from throwing money at the problem. If he's really interested in getting an obscure printing bug fixed (instead of pointing out how much open source sucks), Dropcash would work. Heck, someone should tie PayPal into Bugzilla so people could post bounties for bugfixes/features they want.

Also, on a more ad hominem note, I have trouble taking someone serious who thinks "Opensource != perfect" is news (at slater's link). What's next, "Slashdot != moderate, well-informed opinions"? OH NOES! Also, since leighm "just removed mozilla from my office" and only knows of one office that removed Mozilla, I think the people that boaz is right and leighm does work for TTIGroup (despite dodging the question). It's a tad disingenuous for leighm to say "I know of atleast one office that had to change back to internet explorer" when it was at his or her discretion.
posted by revgeorge at 7:08 AM on February 12, 2005

Internet Explorer not fit for general use yet there are a number of glaring problems with the browser that simply make it a no-go for lots of home and office use. Some of these bugs have been open since before 2002.

There now, its fixed.

Is the "div: position absolute" non standard ?
posted by leighm at 4:51 AM PST on February 12

That's the correct approach.
Shall I tell you the answer or are you capable of researching it yourself?
Can we all agree that if it is not a standard then this is NOT a bug?
Bonus question: Which is more standards compliant and thus most suitable for "office use?"
If this is non-standard then the correct response IS to say "fix the code in the page."
Personally, I hate the "use IE only crap."
posted by nofundy at 7:14 AM on February 12, 2005

In other news: people still print things?
posted by Quartermass at 7:18 AM on February 12, 2005

Why is there so much hype about mozilla/firefox [despite its flaws]?

Easy. Because it is not Microsoft.

I am a big Firefox fan, but I still have to keep IE around for the occasional site where Firefox falls down.
posted by caddis at 7:22 AM on February 12, 2005

What Quartermass said. Printing web stuff is always unpredictable regardless browser, platform or site.

And leighm would have totally lost it to see how pages printed in Safari 1.0. Of course that got fixed pretty quickly.
posted by birdherder at 7:27 AM on February 12, 2005

Rather than waste a Saturday morning writing a considered response, I'm just going to be a dick and say if you think IE is the superior rendering engine and all-around browser, you're lost. IE may work better for you and therefore make sense for you to use, but the majority of rendering issues the average user sees in Moz are due to shitty coders writing their sites for IE.
posted by yerfatma at 7:29 AM on February 12, 2005

Well, since this thread is going nowhere fast, perhaps an Aussie here can clarify something for me: On TTi Group's join us page, they use the phrase "If you believe in the concept of separate but equal..." [emphasis theirs]. Now, here in America that phrase has a very specific connotation, which I hope wasn't the intention. However, I can't quite figure out what it would mean, and why it would be a prerequisite for doing business with them. Anyone?
posted by boaz at 7:37 AM on February 12, 2005

What yerfatma said.
posted by nofundy at 7:41 AM on February 12, 2005

This whole thing is kind of silly, since IE has serious bugs that haven't been fixed for years, and that's a closed-source product. For instance, I've seen computer forums where the number one FAQ is "why will IE only save my images as untitled.bmp?", because it gets asked so often.
posted by smackfu at 7:46 AM on February 12, 2005

One of the problems with Mozilla/Firefox in offices is that a lot of the people that work in offices just use their computers for solitare and email. So, because of their inexperience and lack of comfort and understanding about using new programs, it's difficult to get these people to switch away from IE and to a less virus/trojan/adware laden product like Moz/FF.

The normal computer nerd can easily accept Moz/FF and say, "oh, i can't do this site in Moz/FF" or "i can't print this site in Moz/FF", the person will just open up IE, do this one thing, and go back to that browser with the understanding that it Firefox isn't perfect but is still better than the alternative. However, there are few people in offices with this type of comfort level with computers. You typical middle aged person will see this issue and think of Moz/FF as just another crappy browser and what's the difference?

It's really no surprise that there would be a lot of complaints at TTI or a similar company in a short time period that would prevent a company from having a stated 'mozilla only' policy, because people fear change, new things, and the idea of switching from one product that has problems to another product that doesn't have as many major problems, but still issues of it's own. Assuming these circumstances, unless you're at a small software company, or you have management that isn't going to change it's mind, then I can't see many offices making a full switch to Moz/FF without being inundated with complaints from computer neophytes that get scared to use any program that doesn't have Gates's seal of approval on it.
posted by Arch Stanton at 8:11 AM on February 12, 2005

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