Vintage browser
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Web Browsers – 25 Years Later

… and It’s Still A Struggle!

Definitely load the graphic in the Twitter content above! It’s an animated graphic showing the popularity of browsers. Nothing offensive. No ads. (update: Twitter embeds don’t seem to work anymore, so here’s the direct link).

Related reading:

  • Google’s 2022 Year End Summary of Favorite Chrome Browser Extensions (article)
  • The 2022 Extension Collection in the Chrome Store

Back in the 2000’s, I was a big fan of the Opera web browser. Presto! And Dragonfly was my favorite! But, that doesn’t exist anymore. (or does it?) I have some working copies of the Presto Opera, but it doesn’t really function correctly anymore of course. All that cool stuff like how you could add panels (see this post in the Vivaldi community which mentions Rijk’s Panelizer to which I had actually contributed a panel for Browser Safe Fonts — obsolete of course thanks to Google Fonts and CDN’s). Eric Meyer‘s web site was a staple resource back then.


And then there’s Vivaldi, which I like very much and had used primary for a while. It’s almost too nice for a web developer. Because it has some automatic features which are nice for browsing, but sometimes you don’t want that if you’re looking at code, etc. I can’t think of what that is right now because I haven’t used it in months. I will remark that it’s probably the most like old Opera, even more so than the current Opera browser itself, while they’re both built on Webkit (? not sure). Vivaldi, in my opinion, has the best configurable / personally customizable “Home page” / “Start page” sort of interface. It has the best speed dial with user customizable Folder Icons. That’s pretty cool.

Chromerything Else

Vivaldi aside, all of the webkit browsers are pretty much the same otherwise, in my opinion. People dis Edge, but it’s next to Chrome in my opinion, if not the best of all of the “basic” Webkit browsers quite honestly. And it keeps getting better. I like the Edge sidebar w/ the Office “365” integrations. Best of all, for a web developer like yourself, Edge integrates quite well with VS Code. Regardless, I’ve been an Opera GX guy for the past couple of months. I guess you could say it’s like Opera, but without some the bloat. I dunno if regular Opera still tries to do email, but GX doesn’t, so it’s faster. I go back and forth.

Mozilla Sea WaterFox

It’s also worth having Waterfox (Firefox) installed. In fact, it’s a really good browser and the easiest place to find a slightly different take on the “inspect element” sort of Chrome-based Dev Tools. The Mozilla Web Console is really good (which of course existed before Chrome the browser, therefore before the Chrome Dev Tools). I guess that’s where Firebug came from, and then everything changed.

Not as ground breaking as what Firebug did for the web, there was also “Firebug Lite“, which works in any javascript enabled browser. Look in the upper right and click on the Firebug icon here if you want to see -> a little square thing appears in the bottom right of the window which you click on to make the console open (it used to be a Firebug icon). I forget why it’s not there anymore on mine as it’s not pulling from a CDN, but you know… CDN, or whatever, never made it past 2012… you get the idea. I should waste some more time and try to fix that! Ha! Correction: Firebug Lite still exists! But, the CDN doesn’t work in my app (yet).

Mozilla More

You also need a fork of something Mozilla-esque, right? Take Basilisk for instance, (and their fork of the old Firefox Web Developer plugin is sweet!) if you’re going to have a fork of the Mozilla setup on your system that might be the way to go for something more historical. Seamonkey might let you install some of the old .xpi XUL plugins. Basilisk will. They probably won’t work though. Do, you need that different perspective? Probably not, but you might want the option so there you have it.

IE, etc.

You don’t have to worry about IE anymore, in any form for the most part. So that’s good, but then you’ve got people using Maxthon. I never went down that path, and see no reason to start now. So, i don’t worry about IE things. Maybe you should, and Dillo, and Lynx, and all that? I mess with Dillo if I’m using a Linux GUI… maybe. I liked Hv3! That was cool; built with Tkhtml/ Tcl! It still works… sort of!

For 99% of what you[‘re going to do, you[‘re going to be fine using only Chrome, or Edge. I recommend Edge if you’re the type who likes to integrate your desktop with stuff like OneDrive, etc. At least for your “personal” stuff, it integrates well. I guess that’s why I stay away from Edge for my dev stuff. I try to separate the professional or private stuff in specific profiles, i suppose. Edge happens to be that for me. And Chrome.

Whatchu do

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