Tuesday, December 19, 2006

So long big-ass apps!

It has recently come to my attention that my tinkering with the template has made it impossible to load my blog on the blasted Internet Explorer. This is, of course, unacceptable. After all, 90% of my readers use IE to read this blog. So after some more tinkering the blog is now compatible with IE again.

From as long as I can remember, I've hated IE. It's one of those big-ass applications that eat resources for snacks, another one of those is Acrobat Reader. Opera used to be my favourite alternative to IE until I discovered Firefox. I think Opera was the first browser to come up with tabbed browsing and it's a better browser than Firefox.

So you might ask why did I switch to Firefox? Well, first Opera is slightly bigger than Firefox, it's got an integrated off-line mail client which I don't need. Secondly, back when I still used it, I couldn't get Java or Flash to work properly with Opera even though I installed the version with Java built-in. And then there's the big attraction with the totally FREE Firefox. Opera was free too but back then the free version got this huge ad panel that just irritated me.

I think everybody's into tabbed browsing at the moment. Don't you just love tabs? Anyhow, I think everybody loves it so much that even Microsoft has to integrate that into the new version of IE. Sneaky bastard went behind my back to install IE7 on my computer when I used Windows Update. It even updated WMP to version 11. The result? It took half and hour for my laptop to start up after Windows Update rebooted without my permission while I was typing a post. I was able to salvage the post all thanks to Blogger auto save function. No more automated Windows Updates from now on for me. Everything has got to go through me first!

I must say the new IE is a complete ripoff of Firefox. New features in IE7? Not so new if you ask me. Tabbed browsing and search box built in? They've got Firefox stamped all over them. Granted the original skin of Firefox doesn't look as attractive as the new IE but you can choose from a wide range of skins for Firefox. I would love to remove IE completely but sadly, I need it for Windows Update.

The other famous infamous big-ass program in my book is Acrobat Reader (AR). Just download the installer is exhausting (especially when you have to do it on a dial-up connection). 70MB? That's just too frakking big for something you can't use all the features. I've got to restart my laptop so many times because AR crashed it while opening a file that's got way too many pictures. I don't have to tell you how much I hate AR do I? I hate it so much that when I found an alternative to it I kicked its ass out of my laptop.

The alternative and, might I add, much much smaller and better program is Foxit Reader which is available FREE of charge and full of features AR charged you a fortune for. Yup, I'm talking about annotating right on the pdf file. If you're a uni-student who's, like me, too stingy to print out all the lecture notes you can bring your laptop to lectures and type notes right on the lecture notes. Here's a screenshot of Foxit in action.

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