A Date With Oooh!

Another apology for a missed date with you. Maybe its the ageing process. Or stress. Or both. But I find it very hard to be enthusiastic about this blog. Well, who said the truth never hurts. But I do remember that even in an all round funk. Writing a bit about stuff that interests me make me cheer up somewhat.

Let’s roll with Firefox 2 Beta. And how it compares in general with Internet Explorer 7 Beta 3. Just as the latter incorporated most of the former’s keyboard shortcuts. As well as features like tabbed browsing, pop-up blocking, anti-phishing, scalable screen zoom, an integrated RSS feed reader. As well as CSS compliance and supporting transparent PNG image files. Firefox 2 Beta has raised the bar. With new features that are somewhat similar to those of IE7. But implemented in a more user-friendly yet secure manner.

Of course the best test of a person’s intelligence is how much he agrees with you. So why read what I write? Why not experience the ‘miracle’ yourself? And download a now-official copy of the Mozilla Firefox 2 (Beta 1) – Portable Edition I so love.

Of course if as a Windows (XP/2003 onwards only) user you still haven’t upgraded to IE7. Perhaps on account of the known instability of Microsoft Beta products. Now’s a good time as any to upgrade. Yes, there are lots of things still not right with IE7. And perhaps never will be when you compare a corporate monolith (aka the 10,000 lbs gorilla) like Microsoft with the dynamic user-driven Mozilla Project. But IE7 is still a damn fine browser. With a high-speed rendering engine that appears to default to Clear Type. Even for us dinosaur-like CRT monitor users!

But don’t get me wrong. There’s also an unsung user community who like the ease of Windows. And have thought up new ways to make it easier to use. When Microsoft does it semi-officially, these hacks are known as PowerToys. But some recent Toys have been crappy. The Private Folder add-in in July caused CPU utilization to hit 100% and remain there until the utility was killed (murdered?) using the Task Manager pop-up.

Windows Explorer is a pretty good tool. And you can use right-click to create new folders on the Desktop. Or on a drive or a sub-folder when Windows Explorer is running. But suppose Windows offered you a System Tray button that let you define new folders without Explorer running. The free mdAxelerator 0.02 let’s you define a Create New Folder hot key. Installation is easy. Just download this 16 kb add-in and run it. The hot key will create a new folder titled ‘New Folder’ that you can later rename. The mdAxelerator 1.0 Beta lets to set the folder name before you create it making it more user-friendly.

That’s all I have time for this week. More next time. Stay Safe

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