I used to collect browsers way back when, I don’t anymore although I do check out different browsers on occasion.  This conversation started me thinking about why I don’t care much about browsers anymore.

  1. Back in the early oughts there was a race to add features to the browsers. Each browser had a different feature set, UI and different resulting workflow.  It was fun to test them and see how they fit in with my routine.
  2. There were more rendering engines which made switching between browsers and adventure.
  3. Everyone was on dialup. Speed really mattered. Today, not so much.
  4. Security.  One reason I used Opera was because it was a little more secure against exploits having an oddball rendering engine.  It also didn’t auto download things from websites the way IE did.

Somewhere along the line, minimalism became the mantra for browsers.  All the neat stuff so lovingly added to browsers in the early years started getting stripped out.  It sort of made all browsers the same. Yawn.

We defeated the IE mono-culture for awhile to slowly have it replaced by the new Chrome mono-culture while Firefox seemed to drift for awhile. Apple developed Safari, but then quit the Windows field.  Many of the smaller Open Source browsers never quite seemed to ever be finished.  Opera got sold and the new owners ripped the guts out of it to make it minimalist.

In the end, almost all browsers seemed to be alike claiming to be: fast, clean, minimalist but maybe extendable, tabbed, and boring.  And if you use Chrome, also loaded with Google spyware which you probably can’t shut off even if they provide you with an alleged switch buried deeply in the UI.

Mainly I use one browser on each device, with a second as a rarely used backup/second opinion.  The days of having 4 or 5 browsers are for me pretty much over.


33°F

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Google Chrome is the most popular browser in the world. Chrome routinely leads the pack in features for security and usability, most recently helping to drive the adoption of HTTPS. But when it comes to privacy, specifically protecting users from tracking, most of its rivals leave it in the dust….

Source: Google Chrome’s Users Take a Back Seat to Its Bottom Line | Electronic Frontier Foundation

This is a very well written article from EFF.

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Vivaldi 2.0 is out!  This is a major update and I like it.  You can see all the details at the link below.

For me the big added feature is encrypted sync.  This means my Vivaldi browsing history, bookmarks, setup, logins, can be shared with Vivaldi on my other computers.  I really like that.

It also opens the way for Vivaldi to release an Android version of the browser, so you can share all that stuff from your desktop.  I use Firefox on Android right now but I’d really prefer to use Vivaldi, so I’m hoping this means an Android version is to be released soon.

Adventure in Upgrading:

I did have an adventure in trying to upgrade to Vivaldi 2.0 on Win 10.  The installer kept failing.  I tried a lot of things like disabling my anti-virus to no avail.  Finally, I uninstalled my old version of Vivaldi – still failed.  Now I’m really worried because I am stuck totally without my go to browser.  I tried one last time and on the Windows installation wizard I clicked on Advanced.  This lead me to a dropdown set for “Install for One User”  I clicked on that and changed it to “Install for all users” which changes the file path as to where Vivaldi is installed.  Success!  Vivaldi 2.0 installed, all my settings are there.  Very happy.

I’m not sure what was causing the problem, but this is Windows and Windows gets weird.  Similar things used to happen back in the old Opera days too so no big deal.

 

via Vivaldi 2.0 – Your browser matters | Vivaldi Browser

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via Epic Privacy Browser, a secure chromium-based web browser that protects your privacy and browsing history | a free VPN privacy browser

With Epic you are always in Private Browsing mode.  No history and it blocks tracking cookies.  The big thing that makes it different from other browsers with private browsing is that it has a free VPN so your ISP can’t track your browsing.  I like that.

I wouldn’t make it my daily browser because I like having history and login details, but if I was traveling or on an open wifi network I’d use Epic.

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Lunascape is the first web browser with 3 rendering engines:  Trident (IE), Gecko (FF) and Webkit.  This is handy for developers and others who want to see what a webpage looks like with different rendering engines.

Runs on Windows, macOS, iOS and Android.

Personally I’m not sure I would use this as a default, but I think it would be handy to have it installed on my laptops.

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