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Moz/FF

Chrome and Mozilla

Filed under
Google
Moz/FF
Web
  • Google Quietly Releases Chrome 62 to Stable Channel for Linux, Mac, and Windows

    Google quietly promoted the Chrome 62 web browser to the stable channel today for desktops, including Mac, GNU/Linux, and Microsoft Windows platforms.

  • Chrome 62 Promoted To Stable

    Google has released Chromium/Chrome 62 as the latest update to its widely-used web browser.

  • Chrome Working On JPEG Encode Accelerator With VA-API/V4L2 Support

    Landing in the Chromium browser code-base this morning is a JPEG encode accelerator interface.

  • Mozilla brings Microsoft, Google, the W3C, Samsung together to create cross-browser documentation on MDN

    Community contributions are at the core of MDN’s success. Thousands of volunteers have helped build and refine MDN over the past 12 years. In this year alone, 8,021 users made 76,203 edits, greatly increasing the scope and quality of the content. Cross-browser documentation contributions include input from writers at Google and Microsoft; Microsoft writers have made more than 5,000 edits so far in 2017. This cross-browser collaboration adds valuable content on browser compatibility and new features of the web platform. Going forward, Microsoft writers will focus their Web API documentation efforts on MDN and will redirect relevant pages from Microsoft Developer Network to MDN.

  • A Week-Long Festival for Internet Health

    Says Mark Surman, Mozilla’s Executive Director: “The Internet is layered into our lives like we never could have imagined. Access is no longer a luxury — it’s a fundamental part of 21st century life. A virus is no longer a nuisance consigned to a single terminal — it’s an existential threat that can disrupt hospitals, governments and entire cities.”

    But much of the Internet’s best nature is flourishing, too. Each day, new communities form despite members being separated by whole continents. Start-ups and artists have access to a global stage. And open-source projects put innovation and inclusion ahead of profit.

Firefox 57 - Trick or Treat?

Filed under
Moz/FF

The best way to describe Firefox 57 is too little, too late, but better later than never. In a way, it's a pointless release, because it brings us back roughly where Firefox was and should have been years ago. Only all this time in between was wasted losing user base.

WebExtensions will be the thing that makes or breaks the browser, and with insufficient quality in the available replacements for those that don't make the culling list, there will be no real incentive for people to stay around. Firefox 57 is better than earlier versions in terms of looks and performance, but that's like saying you get 50% discount on a price that is twice what it should be. Ultimately unnecessary, just like graduating from university by the age of 68. There aren't any major advantages over Chrome. This is essentially a Firefox that sucks less.

So yes, on the positive side, if you do want to continue using Firefox, version 57 makes much more sense than the previous 53 releases. It has an almost normal look, some of the sorely needed security & privacy addons are available, and it offers a passable user experience in terms of speed and responsiveness. Bottom line, I will stick with Firefox for now. As long as my extensions keep working. Take care.

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Mozilla 'Freemium' and Visual Impairment Simulator

Filed under
Moz/FF
  • Mozilla might offer Freemium services in the future

    The whole idea seems to be in an early stage and it is quite possible that it won't come to fruition after careful examination. When asked what kind of services Mozilla was considering, Beard answered that the organization was exploring that. This is all the information that is available at this point in time.

  • Mozilla CEO says new Firefox browser delivers 'a big bang'

    There's another side as we start to look at products that we could potentially offer. Some of them start to look like services, exploring the freemium models. There'd be a free level always, but also some premium services offering.

  • NoCoffee: Visual Impairment Simulator

    Four years ago, on a snowy February day, Aaron Leventhal huddled in his unheated home and created a Chrome extension called NoCoffee. This extension allows users to experience web content through different lenses of visual impairments*.

Mozilla funds open source projects with half a million in grants

Filed under
Moz/FF
OSS

Mozilla has announced the latest recipients of its Open Source Support grants, totaling $539,000. The web tech company regularly helps out smaller projects, and this round in particular favored ones aimed at safety and security.

First was $194K to Ushahidi, a platform used to rapidly collect and disseminate local information to people who may need it quickly: blocked streets in a disaster area, police actions or tear gas in a protest, or voter intimidation during elections.

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Firefox 57 Benchmarks and Privacy

Filed under
Moz/FF
  • Benchmarks Show Firefox 57 Quantum Doing Well, But Chrome Largely Winning

    With the hype this week around Firefox Quantum Beta with its user-interface refinements and more noticeably the performance improvements, I decided to run some benchmarks on my end with a variety of tests comparing Firefox 52 ESR, Firefox 56 stable, Firefox 57 Quantum beta, and Chrome 60. Here are those web browser benchmark results from the Linux x86-64 desktop.

  • Improving the Firefox Privacy Notice

    Back in 2014, we reorganized our privacy policies to make them simple, clear, and usable. That effort was based on simplifying the then 14-page privacy policy around a framework that retained some detail but helped users find information more quickly. We did this because of our Data Privacy Principles that offer us guardrails as we develop our products and services.

    Today I’m happy to announce another revision of our Firefox Privacy Notice, which follows our initial announcement on the topic. We continue to build our products focusing on user control and fulfilling our “no surprises” rule when it comes to privacy. We believe that in context notices with the user experience in mind make notices more understandable and actionable for users.

Software: Firefox 56, Python, and MySQL 8 Release Candidate

Filed under
Software
Moz/FF
  • Firefox 56 Released, But All Eyes Are on Firefox Quantum

    The latest update to the browser isn’t exactly packed with changes but it does include a new search function in the settings area to make it faster to find specific options or preferences.

  • Screenshots, Send Tabs and more! Today’s faster Firefox provides upgraded features for all users

    When our intrepid user research team goes into the field and observes Firefox users in the wild, they find that users have all sorts of creative solutions to do things that the browser doesn’t already do, like email links and screenshots to themselves and others, as a way to get things done.

    We want Firefox to be the absolute best way to get things done, so we stuffed a ton of new features into today’s release.

  • 3 Python web scrapers and crawlers
  • Oracle Shows Off MySQL 8 Release Candidate

    After over a year of development, open-source database is now on the path toward general availability.

    Back in September 2016, Oracle first announced the open-source MySQL 8.0.0 milestone release and has been quietly iterating and developing the next generation database ever since.

    On Sept. 25, at long last Oracle debuted the first official Release Candidate (RC) for the MySQL 8.0 release, kicking off the final stabilization period before general availability. The MySQL 8.0 release also marks a numbering leap forward, as the current generally available release is version 5.7.19. MySQL 5.7x first became generally available in 2015, after two years of development effort.

Mozilla's New Browser Release and Opera 48

Filed under
Moz/FF
Web
  • Firefox 56.0 Is Ready Ahead Of The Big Quantum Update

    The final Firefox 56.0 binaries have hit the mirrors ahead of its official announcement to come. Firefox 56.0 brings more improvements while Firefox 57 "Quantum" will be a huge update.

    Firefox 56.0 has a variety of smaller updates, is the last release to support legacy add-ons before mandating WebExtensions, support for rel="preload" for preloading content, various developer API changes, and more. With Firefox 56, media is no longer auto-played when opened in a background tab.

  • Mozilla Accelerates Firefox 57 with Quantum Speed Boost

    The race for internet browser supremacy is accelerating once again, with Mozilla's latest open-source Firefox browser. The new Firefox Quantum browser, which is currently available as a beta, is two times faster than the Firefox 52 release which debuted in March 2017.

    Firefox Quantum is actually the Firefox 57 release, but Mozilla developers have decided that the speed gains in the upcoming browser milestone are so noteworthy that it should have a unique name as well. Mozilla has been incrementally adding features to Firefox over the past year to help speed up the browser, in an effort to provide better performance than Google's rival Chrome browser.

  • Opera 48 Hits Stable with Screenshot Tool, Converter for Units and Currencies

    Opera Software on Wednesday bumped the stable Opera web browser channel to version 48, a release that introduces a bunch of new features, but also improves existing functionality.

    Prominent features of Opera 48 include an overhauled currency converter that supports conversion of time zones, currencies, and various measurements, a new screenshot tool that lets users capture parts of the web, as well as an enhanced search pop-up tool that now lets you search, copy or share selected text.

Mozilla: Next Generation Web Browser, New Film, Magazine

Filed under
Moz/FF
  • Firefox Quantum Next Generation Web Browser Launches November 14, Beta Out Now

    Mozilla recently put up a dedicated website for its next-generation Firefox web browser, Firefox Quantum, which promises to be twice as fast than current versions and come with numerous performance improvements.

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  • New Film, Magazine: The Uncertain Future of Artificial Intelligence and IoT

    What happens when AI virtual assistants can mimic our voices, learn our habits, and double as our drinking buddies?

    It’s a future that doesn’t seem far off. It’s also a future Mozilla is exploring in a new short film and with a new bi-annual magazine.

    Today, Mozilla is releasing a short film commissioned from Superflux titled “Our Friends Electric,” and launching a new magazine titled DING, to explore the impact of connected devices on our lives, our society, and our future.

Firefox Quantum

Filed under
Moz/FF
  • Firefox takes a Quantum leap forward with new developer edition

    Earlier this year we wrote about Project Quantum, Mozilla's work to modernize Firefox and rebuild it to handle the needs of the modern Web.

    Today, that work takes a big step toward the mainstream with the release of the new Firefox 57 developer edition. The old Firefox developer edition was based on the alpha-quality Aurora channel, which was two versions ahead of the stable version. In April, Mozilla scrapped the Aurora channel, and the developer edition moved to being based on the beta channel. The developer edition is used by a few hundred thousand users each month and is for the most part identical to the beta, except it has a different theme by default—a dark theme instead of the normal light one—and changes a few default settings in ways that developers tend to prefer.

  • Start Your Engines – Firefox Quantum Lands in Beta, Developer Edition

    Engines are important, both in cars and in browsers. That’s why we’re so revved up this morning – we’re releasing the Beta of a whole new Firefox, one that’s powered by a completely reinvented, modernized engine. Since the version number – 57 – can’t really convey the magnitude of the changes we’ve made, and how much faster this new Firefox is, we’re calling this upcoming release Firefox Quantum.

Firefox takes a Quantum leap forward with new developer edition

Filed under
Moz/FF

Earlier this year we wrote about Project Quantum, Mozilla's work to modernize Firefox and rebuild it to handle the needs of the modern Web.

Today, that work takes a big step toward the mainstream with the release of the new Firefox 57 developer edition. The old Firefox developer edition was based on the alpha-quality Aurora channel, which was two versions ahead of the stable version. In April, Mozilla scrapped the Aurora channel, and the developer edition moved to being based on the beta channel. The developer edition is used by a few hundred thousand users each month and is for the most part identical to the beta, except it has a different theme by default—a dark theme instead of the normal light one—and changes a few default settings in ways that developers tend to prefer.

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More in Tux Machines

Red Hat and Fedora Leftovers

Devices: Beelink S1 Mini PC, Aaeon’s SBC, Kobo and LEDE

  • Beelink S1 Mini PC and Linux – Comedy Gold
    The Beelink S1 is a small, silent mini PC released in August 2017 retailing for around 300 dollars (250 euros). It’s produced by Shenzhen AZW Technology Co Ltd, a Chinese company that focuses on Android smart TV boxes, Intel mini PCs, and home cloud TV boxes. The S1 ships with an activated copy of Windows 10. But what makes this mini PC interesting? For starters, it purports to run Ubuntu. Combined with a quad core Celeron CPU, dual monitor support (HDMI and VGA), 4K video, expansion options, together with a raft of other features, the machine looks a mouthwatering prospect compared to many other mini PCs.
  • Kaby Lake Pico-ITX SBC features dual M.2 slots
    Aaeon’s “PICO-KBU1” SBC is built on Intel 7th Gen U-series CPUs with up to 16GB DDR4, dual GbE ports, and M.2 B-key and E-Key expansion. The PICO-KBU1 SBC is equipped with Intel’s dual-core, 15W TDP 7th Gen U-series CPUs from the latest Kaby Lake generation. Other 100 x 72mm Pico-ITX boards that run Kaby Lake U-Series processors include Axiomtek’s PICO512. As usual with Aaeon, no OS support is listed.
  • Kobo firmware 4.6.9995 mega update (KSM, nickel patch, ssh, fonts)
    It has been ages that I haven’t updated the MegaUpdate package for Kobo. Now that a new and seemingly rather bug-free and quick firmware release (4.6.9995) has been released, I finally took the time to update the whole package to the latest releases of all the included items. The update includes all my favorite patches and features: Kobo Start Menu, koreader, coolreader, pbchess, ssh access, custom dictionaries, and some side-loaded fonts.
  • LEDE v17.01.4 service release
    Version 17.01.4 of the LEDE router distribution is available with a number of important fixes. "While this release includes fixes for the bugs in the WPA Protocol disclosed earlier this week, these fixes do not fix the problem on the client-side. You still need to update all your client devices. As some client devices might never receive an update, an optional AP-side workaround was introduced in hostapd to complicate these attacks, slowing them down."

Samsung Leftovers

OSS Leftovers

  • FOSDEM 2018 Real-Time Communications Call for Participation
  • Top Bank, Legal and Software Industry Executives to Keynote at the Open Source Strategy Forum
  • Copyleft is Dead. Long live Copyleft!
    As you may have noticed, we recently re-licensed mgmt from the AGPL (Affero General Public License) to the regular GPL. This is a post explaining the decision and which hopefully includes some insights at the intersection of technology and legal issues.
  • Crowdsourcing the way to a more flexible strategic plan
    Trust the community. Opening a feedback platform to anyone on campus seems risky, but in hindsight I'd do it again in a heartbeat. The responses we received were very constructive; in fact, I rarely received negative and unproductive remarks. When people learned about our honest efforts at improving the community, they responded with kindness and support. By giving the community a voice—by really democratizing the effort—we achieved a surprising amount of campus-wide buy-in in a short period of time. Transparency is best. By keeping as many of our efforts as public as possible, we demonstrated that we were truly listening to our customers and understanding the effects of the outdated technology policies and decisions that were keeping them from doing their best work. I've always been a proponent of the idea that everyone is an agent of innovation; we just needed a tool that allowed everyone to make suggestions. Iterate, iterate, iterate. Crowdsourcing our first-year IT initiatives helped us create the most flexible and customer-centric plan we possibly could. The pressure to move quickly and lay down a comprehensive strategic plan is very real; however, by delaying that work and focusing on the evolving set of data flowing from our community, we were actually able to better demonstrate our commitment to our customers. That helped us build critical reputational capital, which paid off when we did eventually present a long-term strategic plan—because people already knew we could achieve results. It also helped us recruit strong allies and learn who we could trust to advance more complicated initiatives.
  • Reform is a DIY, modular, portable computer (work in progress)
    Want a fully functional laptop that works out of the box? There are plenty to choose from. Want a model that you can upgrade? That’s a bit tougher to find: some modern laptops don’t even let you replace the RAM. Then there’s the Reform. It’s a new DIY, modular laptop that’s designed to be easy to upgrade and modify. The CAD designs will even be available if you want to 3D print your own parts rather than buying a kit. You can’t buy a Reform computer yet. But developer Lukas Hartmann and designer Ana Dantes have developed a prototype and are soliciting feedback on the concept.
  • New neural network teaches itself Go, spanks the pros
    While artificial intelligence software has made huge strides recently, in many cases, it has only been automating things that humans already do well. If you want an AI to identify the Higgs boson in a spray of particles, for example, you have to train it on collisions that humans have already identified as containing a Higgs. If you want it to identify pictures of cats, you have to train it on a database of photos in which the cats have already been identified.