Design, Firefox and Chrome.

What’s the difference between Firefox and Chrome?

The main difference is the streamlined and intuitive interface. Chrome is fast and fluid. Firefox is relatively sluggish. Whenever you type a URL and press ‘Enter’ or ‘Return’ in the omnibar, Chrome (and even Safari) clearly show you that they are busy fetching the page. You can find a circle rotating rapidly beside your tab telling you that they are working furiously to load your site. Firefox previously didn’t have this. They had a dotted circle that rotated at a snail’s pace which didn’t quite signify that urgency and dedication a user needed.

Ever since Mozilla realized that Chrome is taking a chunk off their pie, they started taking things seriously. Mozilla decided to revamp the browser design to prevent the existing user base from shifting to Chrome. Not only that, it began increasing the iteration number rapidly- openly telling the world that its ready for competition. (Here’s how the Firefox’s iterations go…Firefox 0.1 to Firefox 4 took 9 years. Firefox 4 to Firefox 13 took 1 year. 8 iterations in a single year!). They removed all the unnecessary buttons (forward button), shifted the home button to the right and made the interface a lot simpler. They also replaced the rotating dots with a rotating circle just like Chrome and Safari.

The other thing is, you don’t find the menu bar in Chrome. The design is minimal and the interface is pretty straight forward with small refresh, forward and backward buttons with a large address bar spreading all the way from left to right. The new tab button doesn’t have any indication unlike Firefox which displays a significant ‘+’ beside every tab. Seasoned users may not care about Chrome not having a ‘+’ sign but Google should also keep the grannies and the not-so-tech-savvy people in mind. Maybe they thought “Grannies don’t multi-task.” Despite the fact that Mozilla combined the search and address bar, they still have the search bar to the right. This is for quick access to Wikipedia, Ask and other websites.

Field Highlight feature is another thing that Firefox added in the recent iterations. Previously, Chrome and Safari had this interesting feature where the field you are currently working-on is highlighted. (If you’re typing your username, that field gets highlighted and when you move to password, that field is highlighted). Firefox didn’t have this feature previously. But they tweaked the browser interface and making all the small-but-significant improvements. Still, Firefox uses huge amounts of RAM and takes a lot of time for startup. Fix this and I will become a Firefox evangelist. I am already one, but give me more reasons to be a better one!

Cameras for Left handers.

“Why aren’t cameras made for left handers?”

If you observe the existing trend, you’ll realize that the handy cams, point-and-shoots and SLRs are made for right handers. The handy cams have the holding strap towards their right, the point and shoots and DSLRs have the shutter button to their right.

Most of the left handers don’t find this uncomfortable. In fact, most of them don’t even think that it’s an issue until you point this out. But being a left hander myself, I disagree. It is obviously advantageous to have a camera designed solely for you. You’ll not be able to tell which one is convenient unless you use one!

But here’s the problem. Taking the widely accepted 9:1 right to left handers ratio into consideration, it is economically not feasible to design a camera for a single person among a group of 10 who doesn’t even think of the possibility of a left handed camera. This will drastically increase the production and assembly costs because of which (probably) companies don’t mention this.

So, you should probably stop thinking about this unless you can really afford a left-handed Leica made exclusively for you.

Reddit raises $24000 in just over 24 hours for OceanSkys-a terminally ill cancer patient.

I ❤ Reddit. That’s all I can say after yesterday’s AMA.

Reddit has never been short of AMA’s. For beginners, AMA is “Ask Me Anything”. It’s the place where the people with challenging jobs and bizarre experiences in life answer the questions put forth by the reddit community. There have been many AMA’s by Celebrities, Nobel Prize winning economists (Read Paul Krugman) and also ordinary people with challenging jobs.

But one AMA yesterday has struck the chord with the community like no other. That was the AMA by OceanSkys (his reddit username), a 23 year old with Stage IV Kidney cancer who said that he won’t be able to see 24. Oceanskys, a resident of Vancouver never foresaw what was going to happen next. Redditors, who are fun loving people with immense love to all things cute (there’s a subreddit called rawrr where people post cute pictures of cats and other animals and they are the ones which usually make it to the front page) were immensely touched. SO touched in fact, that they actually broke into tears.

Here’s a post by a member.

That was one of the several posts that expressed deep concern. He himself stated that people who he thought were mere acquaintances expressed more concern than many so-called close friends. And an internet community filled with strangers worldwide took it more seriously than anyone. People all over the world invited him to stay at their place and a person promised redditors that he would name his restaurant “OceanSkys”. Impressive Huh?

Finally, the catch? A female redditor with username z3phyr13 started a fundraiser to send OceanSkys on a vacation. All the redditors began chipping-in and the amount far surpassed the target- $2500 and now stands at a whopping $23000 (and counting).

So the next time someone argues that people online are unconcerned and inconsiderate, show this AMA and tell them on their FACE that humanity is still at its best. That AMA really makes me believe that the world is still a great place to live in.

You can find the entire conversation at the Reddit AMA page here

And here is the Fundraiser page