inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #26 of 110: Scott Granneman (scottgranneman) Sat 18 Jun 05 14:07
    
Tom, MSFT has been trying to improve security. I'll give 'em that.
Buuuuuut ... they've still got major problems with the architecture of
their browser. It's still welded to the OS, and all of the stopgaps
they've implemented have to occur after the fact. In other words, MSFT
now has a nice anti-spyware tool available (it's in beta, and it was
actually created by a company that MSFT bought, but it's still pretty
darn good). In addition to scanning your PC for spyware, it also
monitors IE on the fly to prevent changes to the browser. However, it's
kind of silly that they need a tool to prevent changes to the browser
from spyware - why doesn't the browser come without the ability for it
to be changed so easily? In other words, your house should prevent
intruders from coming in the door, not allow them in the door, bop them
over the head, and then toss them out. The way that IE is currently
coded and integrated into the OS, we're going to see security problems
with that browser for years to come.

(This isn't to say that Ff is perfect. It isn't, and security issues
are found. But they're usually not as severe, and they're usually fixed
far faster than security problems are at MSFT.)
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #27 of 110: Tom Howard (tom) Sat 18 Jun 05 15:25
    
Yes, I must say I was more than pleasantly surprised with the little
green update arrow on Ff appearing all of a sudden.  Disheartened to
see it too frequently after 1.0 came out, but bless 'em anyway.

You're certainly right about the whole fundamental problem that IE is
simply sitting on.  During the past year of MS getting their act
together about security updates and spyware prevention, I saw way too
many people with computers that were hopelessly unsalvageable.  You
really cannot pay to have someone clean them as it just takes too long.
   Nuke and pave has been the only solution for some instances.

Anyway, this discussion and your book will be encouraging me to try
again to switch some of our company users away from IE.  Now.  About
Outlook!  :)
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #28 of 110: Loren Rosen (loren-rosen) Sun 19 Jun 05 08:25
    
How about Firefox in a work/business environment? Any new or different
issues?
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #29 of 110: It's a new sun to me (nukem777) Sun 19 Jun 05 17:34
    
re: 27 move to Linux or Unix and save everyone the trouble...plenty of
Windows emulators now...
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #30 of 110: Scott Granneman (scottgranneman) Mon 20 Jun 05 07:57
    
Loren, the big problem with Ff in a work environment of any size is
that lack of administrative tools. MSFT very smartly developed the IEAK
(IE Adminstrator's Kit) very early on, which allows admins to
customize & lock down IE in a way unique to each company, and then push
it out to every computer they administer. Ff doesn't have a tool like
that. 

Well, not quite. There is an unofficial tool that works pretty well,
although I haven't used it. I blogged about it on The Open Source
Weblog a while back, at
http://opensource.weblogsinc.com/entry/2487384415215817/. Called The
Firefox Deployment Builder, the product enables, as it says, "Automated
deployment of Firefox with extensions, themes, and pre-configuration".
That's very cool. 

I appreciate Bob Templeton's hard work on the Firefox Deployment
Builder, but I'm also hoping that someone like IBM, which has several
Ff programmers on the payroll, or Novell, which has expertise in
software like this (ZENworks, for instance), develops something that
other ReallyBigCo's feel comfortable using. That will enable Firefox to
take off in the enterprise space.
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #31 of 110: Scott Granneman (scottgranneman) Mon 20 Jun 05 08:01
    
nukem777, as a certified Linux bigot (writing this using Libranet
Linux right now!), I can't agree more. And don't forget Mac OS X! There
are plenty of Windows emulators for Mac OS X, Linux, Unix, and so on.
And managing Ff on *nix machines is faaaaar easier than it is on
Windows (thank you, APT!).
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #32 of 110: Loren Rosen (loren-rosen) Mon 20 Jun 05 09:42
    
I also hear that some companies can't switch because they have
internal applications that rely on IE.
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #33 of 110: Scott Granneman (scottgranneman) Mon 20 Jun 05 10:14
    
Tom, replacing Outlook is a toughie. For people using Outlook Express,
there's always Thunderbird, the open source first cousin of Firefox
(available at http://www.mozilla.org/products/thunderbird/. Tbird
imports emails and settings from Outlook, Outlook Express, Eudora, and
lots of other programs. It's quite secure, feature-packed, and there
are tons of extensions available for the program that take it in very
cool directions. I use it when I have to use Windows, and it's fine.

That said, that doesn't help Outlook users who need a full-featured
PIM. Fortunately, Novell is starting the process of porting the very
nice open source Evolution (find out more about it at
http://www.novell.com/products/desktop/features/evolution.html) over to
Windows. It's in many ways a clone of Outlook, with email, calendar,
to-do lists, contacts, and more. It will also connect to an Exchange
server. However, it still the easy propagation of viruses & worms that
Outlook provides, but they're working on it (just a joke, just a
joke!).

It'll be some time until Evolution is ready for Windows, tho. In the
meantime, there are other options, such as Novell's GroupWise and
SUSE's OpenExchange (I think that's the name).
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #34 of 110: Scott Granneman (scottgranneman) Mon 20 Jun 05 10:23
    
Loren, you're correct. I don't really have a lot of sympathy for those
companies, since they should have been striving for development & apps
that adhere as closely as possible to W3C standards. Hopefully more
companies will realize that using MSFT-specific "extensions" to HTML
and CSS only serves to lock them in to MSFT, & that web standards exist
for a reason: to provide folks with common methods that give them the
freedom to use different vendors and developers.
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #35 of 110: Loren Rosen (loren-rosen) Mon 20 Jun 05 10:46
    
I've wondered though, when companies get stuck with IE, whether it's
the html extensions and non-standard formatting that are at issue, or
is it use of ActiveX? Or -- doesn't IE have some special integration
with Microsoft's identity management stuff?
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #36 of 110: Scott Granneman (scottgranneman) Mon 20 Jun 05 14:15
    
ActiveX is a factor, certainly ... I shouldn't have forgotten that
one. Again, though, that's a non-standard technology. I know that
there's work going on now to standardize the plugin architecture that
Netscape introduced long ago. Of course, MSFT dropped plugins for
ActiveX due to "security reasons" long ago (ironically enough!).

I also know that MSFT's proxy server formerly worked only with IE, but
that's changed as of a few versions ago in Mozilla & Firefox.

I'm not sure about id management. Could someone else enlighten us?
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #37 of 110: Chris (cooljazz) Mon 20 Jun 05 17:30
    
 Scott, I knew I would like the tech support folks in my new job that
I started this spring. Everyone in IT that helps me, at some point
notices and its "ohh, you have Firefox, ...good!". 
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #38 of 110: Scott Granneman (scottgranneman) Mon 20 Jun 05 22:08
    
Chris, you are a lucky, lucky man!
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #39 of 110: It's a new sun to me (nukem777) Tue 21 Jun 05 03:25
    
Very happy with OSX, but after the recent announcement am waiting for
the new Rosetta system and hope to have Linux, Mac and Windows all on
one box, 3 separate drives though. Hackers Unite!
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #40 of 110: Loren Rosen (loren-rosen) Tue 21 Jun 05 06:28
    
What's the biggest problem unsophisticated users have with browsers
overall? My vote is for dealing with helper applications -- Adobe
Reader (Acrobat), Real Audio, etc.
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #41 of 110: J Matisse Enzer (matisse) Tue 21 Jun 05 07:10
    
Misuse of the Back Button
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #42 of 110: Ari Davidow (ari) Tue 21 Jun 05 07:46
    
If the back button is the obvious way for users to get back to where they 
just were, then the "misuse" isn't by the users, but by developers who 
insist that users relearn how to use their tools to meet the convenience 
of the developer.

Of course, where you are starting with stateless HTML, that might be more 
judgemental of developers looking for sanity than it might be.
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #43 of 110: Dennis Wilen (the-voidmstr) Tue 21 Jun 05 07:57
    
Heh.

I'd say the biggest problem with newbie users is 
reluctance/inability/ignorance to use browser settings and preferences.

Windows users especially seem unaware that a browser window doesn't
always have to be full screen.
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #44 of 110: Dan Mitchell (mitchell) Tue 21 Jun 05 08:53
    
what is meant by "misuse?"
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #45 of 110: Tom Howard (tom) Tue 21 Jun 05 20:08
    
Scott, thanks for the note about Outlook.  Yes, it's the integration
of all that has me sold on it.  I also have Thunderbird installed, but
not as my main email client.  I have about 10 different accts set up
there as backups for me and others.  And, Hotmail, and Hotmail Popper,
too.

So.  I use Ff for the Web, IE for backup.  OL for email, etc., and Tb
for backup.

Quite the delightful mess, eh?
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #46 of 110: J Matisse Enzer (matisse) Tue 21 Jun 05 20:45
    
I mispoke when I said "miuse of the back button", what I was thinking was how
newbies use the back button instead of open an extra tab and dragging links
from tab A to tab B, and switching between the two tabs.
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #47 of 110: S*L*J*O (chuck) Tue 21 Jun 05 20:49
    
Some of us still don't use tabs.
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #48 of 110: Public persona (jmcarlin) Tue 21 Jun 05 21:04
    

Some of us are 'late adopters'.
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #49 of 110: beneath the blue suburban skies (aud) Wed 22 Jun 05 08:56
    
and some of us could never live without tabs ever again!
  
inkwell.vue.247 : Scott Granneman, "DON'T CLICK ON THE BLUE E!"
permalink #50 of 110: Loren Rosen (loren-rosen) Wed 22 Jun 05 09:38
    
I actually didn't know (til now) that you could make a tab by dragging
the little icon in the URL field over to the tab bar.

What's your favorite less well-known Firefox feature?
  

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