On Friday I got my first alert that there was an upgrade to the Firefox browser. It also said it wasn’t compatible with one of the add-ons that I liked, and I thought about not upgrading to it. However, Saturday night it popped up again, and I decided okay, fine, I’ll go that route. After all, one add-on does not a perfect browser make, right?

Let me say this; you’ve got to upgrade to Firefox 3.6, and you have to do it now! Man, this sucker is fast; I mean, I haven’t found a page yet that I’d have to wait longer than a second to get to, and that’s just phenomenal. I’m not going to get into all the technical stuff, mainly because I don’t understand it all either, but the main thing they did to improve speed was to address the issue of javascript performance. I’ve written here in the dark past how javascript issues can slow down a blog. Seems they can also slow down some browsers, and they’ve overcome that issue.

They also did something where the scripts will all run asynchronously, or independently from each other, which is what slows things down often. You know how you visit some blogs and you’ll notice something hanging, which is preventing your page to fully load for awhile? That’s not supposed to happen with Firefox 3.6, and so far in my own little tests it seems to be working great.

They’ve also added something new, which will probably pretty much get rid of themes. Instead of themes, now you can add a “persona”, of which they have more than 30,000. This bad boy changes the look of your browser to whatever you want, and I have to tell you, I’ve changed mine to some pretty bright colors, and just looking at it is making me smile because it’s always been dark since I bought the new computer, and there wasn’t anything I could do about it.

Firefox 3.6 will also now tell you if your plugins are out of date, rather than waiting until you get to a site and suddenly realize you can’t access something. I like that as well, and of course you always have the option to tell it to leave you alone for awhile.

I have to say that I feel they did a great job with this new version. Everything is easier to see, and I’m not even missing the one add-on that’s not compatible anymore, the AnyColor add-on, because what they’ve done is made the print on your open tabs bigger and easier to see, and the transparency also makes it easier to read, so you know exactly what each tab is. And obviously you don’t need it with the persona’s option.

The only minor gripe I have thus far is that, for some reason, every once in awhile instead of opening up a new tab it opens up a brand new window. There was that same issue with Firefox 3.5 initially, something they called tab tearing, and they quickly came up with a bug fix for it. I’m hoping they’ll do the same with this browser.

If you’re not using Firefox, well, I’m not sure why, but trust me, you’ll love this new version of Firefox whether you use it now or not.

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