Will Apple ever make a web browser?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by DakotaGuy, Feb 1, 2002.

  1. DakotaGuy macrumors 68040

    DakotaGuy

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    Jan 14, 2002
    Location:
    South Dakota, USA
    #1
    I was just wondering on your thoughts about Apple making a web browser. I use IE 5.1 on OSX and it works pretty good...but it is the program I have to force quit the most. I have Netscape 6 too...it is more stable then IE, but kind of loaded down with lots of junk and it is missing the support and plug-ins that it needs in some areas. I use the Mail app by Apple and it works great and use all their other Apps and not once have I ever had to force quit an actual Apple application. I know there are alternative web browsers out there, but I was just wondering what you guys thought about the possibility of Apple releasing a Web browser and maybe even integrating the Mail app they already have into it. It would be nice to find a good stable browser that worked excellent in OS X. Right now IE is good, but far from excellent.
     
  2. eyelikeart Moderator emeritus

    eyelikeart

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    #2
  3. obeygiant macrumors 68040

    obeygiant

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    totally cool
    #3
    I dont think so. IE is the best thing going.
    Besides, Apple is incompatible with enough stuff online anyway.
     
  4. Tommy! macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2001
    Location:
    NH
    #4
    I think that if Apple were to release an internet browser, almost every mc user would choose it over IE. This wouldn't make MS very happy. I think it's also the reason why apple doesn't improve Apple Works, for fear of microsoft losing sales... then, microsoft (along with other companies) wouldn't create these programs for the mac.

    i dont know though... id like to see what other people have to say about this 1
     
  5. Abominog macrumors member

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    Hell A., California
    #5
    Apple did have the best browser going at one time. Cyberdog 2.0 still beats them all in some key areas (under Classic, anyway) IE is about the most versatile, but it has its definte weaknesses as well.

    Yeah, Cyberdog v.X would be heaven.
     
  6. Omen88 macrumors regular

    Omen88

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    #6
    I totally agree, we should start a petition for a carbonized version of cyberdog and opendoc :)
     
  7. atomwork macrumors regular

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    Miami Beach
    #7
    netscape rocks

    I don't know what most people have against Netscape. Its fast and good (classic browsers). Don't tell me IE is so much faster. As a web designer i need to check the flash stuff perfectly and try this please with a IE browser.

    May be 6 and 6.1 was slower but 6.2 seems to be ok now, finally.

    Well, just check some heavy flash sites and you see what i mean:)
     
  8. eyelikeart Moderator emeritus

    eyelikeart

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    #8
    netscape's bloated and has progressively gotten sssslllloooowwwweeerrrrr :eek:
     
  9. mymemory macrumors 68020

    mymemory

    Joined:
    May 9, 2001
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    Miami
    #9
    Netscape????

    Netscape is ok but when you are a web designer Netscape use to place things a bit desorganiz after you spend a few days between your client and your bose dealing with the look of the site. Explorer is a bit smarter reading html language and other stuff too. For example, if in the htm code you do not use the "/html" that close the language, the Netscap will load for ever, Explorer doesn't.

    And I do not think Apple is gonna do a browser, that is like Toyota making their own tires. It is better and cheaper to have all Apple links in the Explorer and something is true, Apple can not start develop softwater for it self, some other companies would be mad.
     
  10. maclamb macrumors 6502

    maclamb

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    Jan 28, 2002
    Location:
    Northern California
    #10
    atomwork -
    That was a joke, right? You're not serious about Netscape being fast?

    I agree with the Eye man
    On my machine:
    Ti667 1 G Ram 30G hd it takes:
    IE 51. 7 secs to start up
    NS 6.2 11 secs to start and another 10 for mail to come up
    Powermail 3.1 8 seconds

    Even Mozilla is slow -

    Why is that? I WOULD prefer to use NS than Powermail
    I am moving to a 867G4 at qork and probably a dp 1G at home, so NS will be acceptable, but SHEESH!
     
  11. Beej macrumors 68020

    Beej

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    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Buffy's bedroom
    #11
    Am I the only one that has trauma with Mail? I still use it - i haven't found anything better in OS X - but t crashes often, and randomly resizes it's windows. Ugh.

    As for an Apple browser... I hope they do. It will take a lot to pull me away from OmniWeb, though, I love OmniWeb. But this is Apple we're talking about here. If they make a browser, it will be the best on the planet.

    That said, I don't think we'll be seeing one form them any time soon...
     
  12. chmorley macrumors 6502a

    chmorley

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    Location:
    Denver, CO
    #12
    Some people...

    It is so frustrating that Netscape 6.0 was such a piece of crap that it turned people off Netscape entirely. It is far more stable and much faster than IE--both in OS X and 9. Gecko is a much faster engine for rendering complex pages--especially anything with tables. IE will only load a table when it has the whole thing. Netscape will load it piece by piece, allowing the page to be browsable right away.

    If all you looked at was which started faster, we'd all still be using DOS. The time cost for starting any program is spent once--when it's opened. If Netscape takes longer to load (and it does), but then surfs faster than IE (which it does), which is "faster"?

    I have used both extensively (as well as OmniWeb). Netscape surfs fastest on my TiBook 667 in OS X, and on my wife's iBook in OS 9. The only drag is that it's not as Aquified as I'd like--it's not as pretty. OmniWeb looks the best (and is the only Cocoa one of the three), but it's the slowest.

    Anyway, this is the best indicator I have found: Load the TV listings at TV guide in any browser you have (try Satellite channels, just to make the page as big as possible). See how quickly it loads in each. This is only one test, but it makes the point.

    TV Guide

    Let me know what you think. At least try it.

    CJM
     
  13. Abominog macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2002
    Location:
    Hell A., California
    #13
    Re: Some people...

    Interesting test- the results surprised me except for Cyberdog's. It soundly trounced both IE and NN in 9.2.2. IE was by far the slowest at about 23 seconds to load DirectTVs Pacific listings, NN was about 13 seconds and Cybie was about 7 seconds. Sure, there's some things Cybie doesn't do very well, or at all, but nothings faster (cached pages don't load fast, they load instantly), the email part is unparalleled, ftp is reliable and telnet is solid- all for a 247K of disk space and a 2 MB RAm footprint. It won't do flash or java sites very well, but that's understandable seeing as how it's been out of development since '97. Fortunately, I loathe both web site schemes and again, there are some things it does that just can't be done with any other browser.
     
  14. chmorley macrumors 6502a

    chmorley

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    #14
    Cyberdog.

    I miss it. A whole different train of thought going on at that time. Still seems like it would've been a good idea.

    CJM
     
  15. Nipsy macrumors 65816

    Nipsy

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2002
    #15
    Re: Netscape????


    Ummm...

    That is an argument against your skills as a developer, not for IE as a browser.

    Suggesting that a browser should be forgiving of something as sloppy as an open ended tag helps me understand why M$ has such a stellar security history (if you're stupid, reread the last phrase, and add 'SARCASM' between every word).

    If you accept the M$ web publishing model, you'll see that M$ believes in nesting tables, using non-breaking spaces as a design element, spacer-gifs, and other kludges which can make a page near impossible to parse. Have a comparative gander at Frontapge, or Word generated html code vs. a hand coded page doing a similar thing. I have seen M$ Frontpage generate a page in 1320 lines of html. I hand coded the same page in 261. ****ing Dreamwaever only needed ~410 lines. Their professional level tools (IIS/ASP/Interdev) are no better. It is for this reason that IE is so forgiving...it expects (even anticipates) poorly coded, M$ generated pages.

    IE is, was, and always will be bloated M$ crapware. IE does bot obey the rules of the W3C, rejects the principles of a common DOM, and is a security nightmare. Having developed 7 & 8 figure web apps for about 5 years, I can tell you one thing about Netscape:
    It plays by the W3C rules (95% of the time), although I agree that since AOL bought Netscape, things have gotten bloated.

    iCab, Opera, and OmniWeb are light efficient browsers, which sadly have response and parsing problems with a few too many well-coded sites or servers. I hope that at least one of these programs can work to become a well oiled machine.

    Here is a favored example:
    I worked for about a year on a large project for a major bank's online account management. The whole thing is run on UNIX boxes (ya know, for security), powered by Java (you know, cause ASP, IIS, and Windows [blank] are full of holes). It also functions in any JS capable browser, on any platform. It degrades very well to older browsers. It has an exceptional security record.

    QA was done first on Netscape 4.7.8 for Solaris, because if it passed internal QA on a strict browser, on a Sun, external QA (read: focus group monkeys on Wintel boxes) would be easy.

    Another example:
    During the debacle where M$N would not let you through to M$N's homepage if you weren't using IE, they claimed other browsers weren't XML compliant. Soon after, someone ran the M$N source through the W3C XML rule checker, and guess what...it failed.

    If you can't write well, don't publish! The book industry survives by rejecting the garbage, sadly the web doesn't have the same safegaurds (btw, this is aimed at lazy corporations putting out garbage web apps, if your Grandma wants to make a page about her kitten with Frontpage, more power to her!)
     
  16. AmbitiousLemon Moderator emeritus

    AmbitiousLemon

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2001
    Location:
    down in Fraggle Rock
    #16
    the biggest hole in my macintosh experience is the lack of a functioning internet browser. i honestly dont know how things have gotten so bad. i tend to think of users of ie much the same way as i think of users of windoze - stupid, ignorant, and/or lazy (too lazy to realize that if the researched and found a better browser they really settle down with something nice). unfortunately the state of browsers right now leaves us with little choice but to join the mindless ranks in line to give bill gates a bj. another of the many reasons i wont be migrating to osx any time soon - if my browsing web experience is bad its just not worth it at this point (eventually i'll switch too much appealing stuff to stay away fo long).

    apple could probably give us something good if they felt they had reason to. and apple - omniweb browser similiar to the apple - soundjam mp3 player would be something to wow the world. im sure if every mac shipped with it installed as the default nearly all mac users would use it, much the same way nearly every mac user uses ie right now (if the browser actually functioned properly it would pull in those of us avoiding ie).

    should apple release a browser? i think it would be a good idea (maybe im just being selfish)(since ive been awake for 37 hours its hard for me to think too deeply on this).
     
  17. davincijones macrumors newbie

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    Location:
    Akron. Ohio
    #17
    I think Apple should...

    buy Omniweb and Fire.
     
  18. Foocha macrumors 6502a

    Foocha

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2001
    Location:
    London
    #18
    Netscape is very pedantic in interpretting code, IE is much more forgiving. The fact that IE is able to interpret bad code just goes to show how much thought has been put into it. IE is a great product, but it's a shame it's so slow on Mac, and doesn't match the PC version feature for feature.

    I agree with Nipsy, however, that if you can't debug your code for Netscape that says more about your skills than the Netscape browser.

    The sad fact is that we are in a standards-based world, and client-side, the standards are set by Microsoft, not W3C. The Mac *needs* a MS based browser. Without Microsoft's continued development for Mac, the platform does not stand a chance as a mainstream consumer desktop OS.

    Having said that, I think OmniWeb is great, and it would be kinda cool if Apple bought it, even though it would be commercial suicide (think Redmond Retaliation!).
     
  19. Nipsy macrumors 65816

    Nipsy

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2002
    #19
    Gotta disagree...M$ has tried to set standards, and the sheep have followed, but they have failed miserably in many respects. Remeber JScript, the M$ interpretation (degradation) of JavaScript? How 'bout inline VB? Hasn't really stolen the thunder from JavaScript. Also, there have been a slew of M$ 'suggested' amendments to the DOM which have gone the way of the Dodo (true for Netscape as well). The reality is that the people who mold and shape the future mostly hate M$ (save for that guy who wants to make .NET the future of Gnome).

    The Web is still served primarily by Sun, and combined implementations of PHP/JSP/CFM/Texis/.shtml/etc. driven apps quash NT/IIS/ASP percentage wise.

    The problem is that M$ is the 95%...and that 95% is composed mostly of end users. Developers (good developers) are fairly platform independent. They code in whichever environment they like, and test via VNC, backup mcahines, etc. With that said, if you've seen OSX (from a dev standpoint) or IRIX, could you really say you 'like' Windows?

    Thankfully, these developers also don't like to work hard, and writing good code is a lot easier than debugging bad code, so you have a bunch of people who make the eBays, Bank of Americas, Amazons, etc. who do things outside of the M$ model, and these sites succeed.

    Sadly, when Joe's Jewellry Jamboree or [insert company here] wants a website, Joe usually buys a copy of FrontPage, and puts out that same site that is all over the web...he changes a color or two, puts his photo where it says insert photo here, and thinks he's God's gift to the web. This M$ driven flock comprised many of the boom 'n bust companies of '98-'99. They had an idea, made it a web app, and tried to sell it as a service. I worked at a magazine at the time that did an interesting feature on M$ as a server-dev platform, and one of those little insert charts showed that a disproportionate amount of M$ modelled companies were failing as Application Service providers. They (Upside.com, November 2000) surmised that this was because App Service Providers were having a much harder sell into HUGE companies running *NIX servers (Ford, Genentech, etc), whereas App Service Providers not following M$'s primrose path were very adaptable to *NIX & NT.

    So, since I could continue ranting forever, I'll try to conclude. M$ don't control the standards, on the web, or ahything, outside of M$ Software. Sadly, with M$ Software comes a huge flock of sheep to influence. Consortiums like the W3C still make the rules, markets still drive the demand (and servers are a whole different market). M$ tries everything it can to cripple technologies other than their own (ummm...why did that IE Service Pack remove my Java Virtual Machine). Thankfully, for now at least, 50% of the web (and 80% of the useful web) is still developed by people who aren't tied to Windows, and I don't see M$ making the friends it needs to in colo centers, server farms, etc.

    Remember, Microsoft bought Hotmail like 4+ years ago, but Hotmail was only fully moved off of Linux machines 2 months ago!

    P.S. Forgot to address what you said about IE being 'good software' for being tolerant & forgiving of poor coding. I cannot disagree more. By not following rules explicitly, IE is very prone to security exploits. It also habitually leaks memory if too many instances are run concurrently (PC version). Additionally, the PC version has sold your url bar to RealNames, and fed you whole to MSN search. The Mac version, while better than the Windows version, still has a foible for every bell an whistle.

    P.P.S. (because I was worried that this post was too short) After all the above was said, I do think I need to let you know that I respect M$ MacBU greatly. Office v.X is the best piece of software I've ever seen from the Beast, and IE for X is a striking improvement. I just needed to mention that M$ does not, thankfully, control the world (yet), and that calling IE good for being loose is 'silly'.
     
  20. maclamb macrumors 6502

    maclamb

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2002
    Location:
    Northern California
    #20
    I want to thank all of you for one of (if not the most) interesting and useful threads I've seen in a long time.

    I walked away from the NS browser on OSX b/c it loads slower - w/o regard to its performance once up. I was also running it on OSX 10.01 on a 5ooMhz G3 IBook - and THAT was slow - and I switcheed to powermail for email and have been (mostly) satisified - but not happy.

    Now I run a Ti667 PB and NS , while loading slower is acceptable for email.

    Which I prefer over all the rest (eudora, outlook,powermail).
    Our company has a policy NOT to use Outlook on windows due to the security holes - which M$ has so sucessfully framed as an internet security issue!
    That so completely frosts me.

    I use Dreamweaver to code pages - never liked or trusted Front page -
    No real reason, just an inherent distrust of M$ products.


    Most, if not all, of their **** demos well for 15 minutes - then completely sucks long term in large scale dev aqnd deployment (VB, Access come to mind)

    I've taught VB at the university and my students loved it for small (<500 lines of code) projects - The moment they get over a couple thousand lines managment becomes a big pain.

    So, thank you I will revist NS

    Do you recommned NS or Mozilla open source? and is there a difference?
     
  21. atomwork macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2001
    Location:
    Miami Beach
    #21
    don't just freak out

    maclamb:

    i am not talking about the 6.2 version or 6 in general. Its slower then IE 5.1

    but matter of fact you can get the communicator 4.97 that is fast.

    Don't know what i can tell you more but if you only check your work in IE then you may be run into the problem that your site for the client is not 100% done. May be IE checks the scripts better, i know. Man y scripts sometimes don't work on netscape so you have to rewrite them but this factor you have to see.

    But i ment only with faster that Flash files run way faster on NETSCAPE then on IE. Its just so. I see it every day. Again, i am not talking about 6.2
     
  22. Taft macrumors 65816

    Taft

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2002
    Location:
    Chicago
    #22
    Moving standards...

    One of the s**ttiest things about mac internet surfing is the lack of compatability. This wasn't a huge problem under OS 9 but has been under OS X. Thankfully, with the addition of shockwave and a Win Media Player that doesn't *totally* suck (face it, we need WMP to view some media content the Quicktime won't touch!), I'd say IE is pretty much there.

    Omniweb isn't far behind, but it still lacks some compatibility. Netscape is even closer (and I like its rendering engine more) but the UI makes my skin crawl.

    But the really bad part of all of this isn't the Macs lack of compatability, its the reasons for it. Nine times out of ten, a page that is incompatible with Mac browsers was created with MS's *tweaked* standards. The attempts they made to change some open web standards (javascript and java come to mind--or how about CSS) to leverage themselves were appalling.

    .Net is another, more radical, attempt at this. Did you know that it essentially has a virtual machine in it!! Or that code written for .Net is compiled into essentially byte code. .Net is truely Microsoft's response to Java. It will allow developers to release applications over the web and to release web applications via .Net. Do you think the first few shots at .Net will include Mac support? I highly doubt it. That means that every web app that chooses .Net will forfeit mac support (at least initially). And like every other Microsoft initiatives, there will be *tons* of lackeys who jump on the bandwagon simply because it is MS. That means at least some people will write for this platform. That means at least a few more incompatible web pages.

    Thanks for reading.

    Matthew
     
  23. maclamb macrumors 6502

    maclamb

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2002
    Location:
    Northern California
    #23
    atom-
    are you saying NS 4.67 for OSX? Where can i get it - is it still available on NS?

    Also a NS Mail Question:

    NS Mail on PC has an option to request return receipt when creating a new email.

    I can't find this on NS 6.2 for OSX.
    Am I missing something? Is it missing - or not available on Unix?
     
  24. chmorley macrumors 6502a

    chmorley

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2002
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    #24
    Netscape vs. Mozilla

    maclamb--

    I try Mozilla from time to time just to see how it runs. With OS X being so stable I am less concerned than I used to be about using betaware. It's important to remember that Mozilla is what Netscape will become, but some features haven't yet been worked out (read: betaware). I have generally found that 1. Mozilla tends to be faster, and 2. Netscape is more stable. Since we are both running the same machine and OS, your results are likely to be similar. Mozilla has some great features, though. In particular (if you try it), check out the toolbar bookmarks for sites like espn.com and CNN.com. Try MSNBC.com to see a site it just doesn't know how to render. Overall, though, Netscape's reliability makes it my promary browser 95% of the time. People who say IE is faster or more stable haven't actually used NS 6.2. They're basing their opinions on old information--or maybe their machines just run so differently from mine that they get different results. More likely the former, I think.

    Not sure about NS mail, since I use Apple's mail.app. I checked it out quickly, though, and I couldn't find the "request return receipt" either.

    You can find NS 6.2.1 at Apple's download site.

    Also, Mozilla has nightly builds that incorporate bug fixes and such. It is also the easiest way to get just the Mozilla broser, if that's what you're interested in. Sometimes fixing old bugs creates new ones, so it's like a box of chocolates, you know? Still, it's interesting to see how the latest features are coming along. You can download nightly builds at the Mozilla site. Try at your own risk (but it won't hurt anything).

    CJM

    P.S., I just tried the latest nightly build. It seems very fast, and seems to use OS X's cache better. Check out how quickly it loads the second time (start it, quit, then start again).

    P.P.S., I also just started trying iCab. It actually seems pretty good--fast, and at least Aqua-looking. I believe it is Carbon. Check it out.
     
  25. Foocha macrumors 6502a

    Foocha

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2001
    Location:
    London
    #25
    Whilst Microsoft is able to set client side standards since they have over 95% of the the desktop market, and the vast majority of these machines are using some version of IE for browsing, I think we can take some satisfaction in the fact that MS are very far from standard server side.

    Microsoft's .net is clearly an attempt to copy Java, something they've done because they were not allow to "embrace and extend" Java itself.

    Personal view: on client side the battle is won, on server side, Long Live Java, Long Live Apache, Long Live Linux!
     

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