While troubleshooting a home network issue today, I stumbled upon a new feature that Apple is introducing in OS X Mountain Lion. Many have referred to the Safari Reading List feature that debuted in Lion and iOS 5 as a glorified list of bookmarks. That's kind of true, although Reading List can also let you know which items you've read and which you haven't, and also gives you a text preview of each item as well. However in Mountain Lion you are able to read your Reading List items even when you're offline.
When you aren't connected to a network and pull up Safari, you get a message that tells you that you aren't connected to the Internet, but that your "Reading List articles are available for viewing while you are offline." Definitely a nice bonus when you wanna read some stuff but have no way of browsing the web.
This morning Apple announced OS X Mountain Lion, and alongside the announcement they've also made available the first Mountain Lion Developer Preview. Anyone with a Developer Account can log into Apple's Dev portal to download the first build (12A128p) of OS X 10.8, which will be available to all later this summer.
Read More | Mac Developer Portal
Why would you bother doing that? In a word, security. When you elect to restart your system into Safari, you're effectively placing the Web browser into a sandbox. When it boots, your system will give any users with physical access to your machine the ability to surf the Web. But that's it. Users won't be able to access the system's files or applications.
And thanks to Lion's new auto-save and application restoration capabilities, users that slap their systems in Safari-only mode will be able to restore back to their full desktop exactly as they left it. Since Safari mode runs off of a system's recovery partition, you'll still be able to access the Web and research new methods for fixing your system should your primary partition suffer some catastrophic upset.
The comparison to Chrome OS stems from the fact that Google's operating system runs entirely Web-based: The browser is the primary method for interacting with the system. There's no underlying desktop layer to speak of.
Mozilla's popular open-source, community-developed browser has been updated to Firefox 4.0 today. Users can now download the significantly overhauled software in 75 languages from www.firefox.com. Versions are available for Windows (including the popular XP, shunned by the also-new Internet Explorer 9), Mac OS, and Linux.
The new browser version was announced on the Mozilla blog in a post lengthily titled "Mozilla Launches Firefox 4 and Delivers a Fast, Sleek and Customizable Browsing Experience to More Than 400 Million Users Worldwide."
The browser that pushed Internet Explorer to stop resting on its laurels after years of stagnation has now been pushed by Google's newer Chrome browser to do just the same. Not that Firefox had been stagnating the way that IE had been before the Mozilla browser's debut. But Chrome has served as inspiration for the new version of Firefox in more ways than one—improved speed and a simplified interface are standout examples of this.
Gary Kovacs, CEO of Mozilla, commented, "Mozilla is very proud of Firefox 4, created by our community of thousands of volunteers worldwide. It truly is the browser for tomorrow's Web. The Internet has become the most important connection mechanism in our society, which is why we've focused on making users' Web experience as fast, modern, safe and intuitive as possible."
Despite a new pair of eyes, trimmer figure, and nimbler mind, the
"Adobe's goal is to support our customers with whatever tools they need to get their creative content onto any device," said Tom Barclay, senior product manager for Flash Professional at Adobe, when asked for a comment. "We look forward to the user feedback about the code they're generating with Wallaby and the use cases for which they end up using Wallaby. We believe Flash is the best long-term solution for things like games, video and RIAs where high levels of interactivity are required. And we believe HTML5 is just as imperative for things like banner ads, especially for devices such as iPad and iPhone."
Apple has released an update to Safari to finally enable the Extension Gallery that they’ve made mention of a few times since Safari 5 was released. Safari 5.0.1 lets you peruse through a bunch of extensions that add to your Safari experience, including stuff from big names like Bing, Amazon, Twitter, eBay, and more. There are bug fixes and secutiry updates as well in this release:
- More accurate Top Hit results in the Address Field
- More accurate timing for CSS animations
- Better stability when using the Safari Reader keyboard shortcut
- Better stability when scrolling through MobileMe Mail
- Fixes display of multipage articles from www.rollingstone.com in Safari Reader
- Fixes an issue that prevented Safari from launching on Leopard systems with network home directories
- Fixes an issue that could cause borders on YouTube thumbnails to disappear when hovering over the thumbnail image
- Fixes an issue that could cause Flash content to overlap with other content on www.facebook.com, www.crateandbarrel.com, and other sites when using Flash 10.1
- Fixes an issue that prevented boarding passes from www.aa.com from printing correctly
- Fixes an issue that could cause DNS prefetching requests to overburden certain routers
- Fixes an issue that could cause VoiceOver to misidentify elements of webpages
You can download Safari 5.0.1 now.
You can download Safari 5 now.
Read More | Safari 5
Surprise, surprise - looks like iPhone and iPod touch users the world over are downloading the recently-approved Opera Mini app, a free Safari web browser alternative. In fact, it’s so popular, that it’s the number one free download in all 22 App Store regions. Have you tried it?
Read More | Opera Mini for iPhone
Apple just released an update to Safari 4, and you can download Safari 4.0.5 right now by firing up Software Update, or by simply hitting the Safari product page and downloading it there. According to Apple, you get a few performance and stability improvements (always a good thing,) as well as some bug fixes. Can’t complain about any of that, right?
Oh, and if you are on OS X and run something like Saft, be sure to wait before installing the update, in case it breaks your plugins and add-ons.