Safari . . .

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Apple released a beta for its Internet browser, Safari, the other day.

I downloaded it and have run it for a couple days, and I have what may be bad news for some:

Safari has not crashed. killed, maimed or traumatized my machine, not even once yet.

Safari has not crashed, killed, maimed, or traumatized me, or any family members, not even once yet.

The electricity still runs in my house.

I haven’t tested my furnace yet, but I did look at it, and it definitely hasn’t exploded.

Maybe it destroyed my neighborhood, let me check . . . no, it’s still there.

Ridiculous? Of course, but so are the “strangle the infant spawn of Satan now” articles about it, two of which are here and here.

These articles are like reading attacks on strawberry ice cream. Some people like strawberry ice cream, some don’t. If you’re one of the don’ts, even if you love chocolate or vanilla, you don’t get all wound up about it and call it poisonous.

For instance, Apple handles text rendering and anti-aliasing somewhat differently than IE/Firefox. You may like the difference, you may not, but no one is going to go blind or insane looking at them.

Some negative points being made about Safari are definitely untrue. For instance, one article listed above claims that you can’t save changes you make to preferences, and that you are stuck with an Apple page as your home page. This is simply not true. What is true is that there is no “Save” button; changes occur on the fly.

Some claims appear to be exaggerated. Safari definitely chews up more RAM than either IE or Firefox, but my simple tests showed that the difference was roughly 50%, not double.

There are also definite annoyances for Windows users, such as only being able to resize a windows on the lower right hand corner of that window, and having to drag the mouse across an entire URL to get rid of it rather than being able to highlight the whole URL with a click. However, this is still a beta, not like these annoyances are set in concrete.

Is it faster than IE/Firefox, like Steven Jobs says? Well, first, look at who said it. Second, no, it’s about the same as untweaked versions of IE7/Firefox.

Conclusion

Safari didn’t wreck either my machine or my life, but it didn’t light up machine or life, either. No Mac visions. No euphoria. No whatever-the-hell-it-is that infects some Mac users. Nothing objectively compelling that will cause any stampede from IE/Firefox.

On the other hand, it’s not bad at this point, and it’s certainly not evil.

Just like strawberry ice cream.

It’s just no big deal either way, pro or con, and it’s about as much of a threat to IE/Firefox as strawberry is to vanilla and chocolate.

And fighting about it is like fighting over the best flavor of ice cream.

Ed


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