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UX branch discussion

Discussion about official Mozilla Firefox builds
couldabeen

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Post Posted March 27th, 2013, 9:31 pm

So, it says 'Customize', but in reality there is no 'Customization'?
Outside of having to toggle my bookmark bar on/off every start to see it, I can learn to live with learning a new 'scheme'. But if they say 'Customize' they damned well should mean what they say and stop this dilly/dally crap that they have going on.
Nightly is still a good clean interface, as is the Aurora version, but I'm guessing that will change in the coming weeks.

I don't use Chrome, but I do use the Iron version of chromium, and it will become my browser of choice if this is the way the devs are taking Firefox.
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sabret00the

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Post Posted March 28th, 2013, 6:20 am

marty60 wrote:sabret00the, that depends on whom you believe when it comes to the statistics. Net Applications, which measures unique visitors has Chrome losing share in the last three to four months and is now down to 16%. At the same time, Firefox has been slowly regaining users and is currently back to over 20%. The real winner lately has been IE, probably due to IE10. It begs the question though: why the rush on Mozilla’s part to continue copying a sinking browser and does their ex-Google designer have anything to do with it?

The bottom line is that Firefox is maintaining its loyalty base and that according to Net Applications at least is ahead of Chrome despite Google's massive advertising. So I'm not sure what the point is about dumbing down the browser now. I'm reading about maintenance costs but how much is it to keep the back button separate from the URL bar, which is the way many of us use it? Now we’ll have to wait for kind developers who have the time and energy to restore these basic UI functions with addons.

Such questionable moves just anger the base and may actually push some of them to other browsers.

With all things like these, you get a huge push, you get bounce-back and then you get a figure. Chrome will also inflate its numbers by bundling Chrome with Android devices. If Google increase their advertising, some of it which should in fact be illegal (i.e. plastering notices on the Search front page if accessed from another browser), they'll push the number up a little more.

I actually think combining the back button and the URL bar was a wise decision. The key-hole has been apart of the Firefox brand for a long time and UX consolidation is never a bad thing. That said, I don't believe that half-hearted implementation is a good thing (i.e. the status bar shim still being present in Firefox 22) and I don't believe over consolidation is a good thing either. The add-on bar being moved to the navigation bar is in fact a good thing. Most users don't install add-ons and those that do, rarely install enough to fill a whole bar, so by default, it's a good decision. If the level of customisation is significantly lost, that's undoubtedly a bad thing. Yet, by the numbers game, it's more of a negative decision than a bad decision. The goal here is to provide the best user experience for the average user out of the box and there's been some neglect on providing the ability to provide a great user experience for power users.

Fact is, Chrome took users from Firefox, Opera and Internet Explorer and questions have been asked as to why those users never migrated or stayed with Firefox. It would've been good if less of a knee-jerk decision was reached and one based on actual Firefox numbers, rather than what I imagine Limi brought with him from his time at Google. Firefox has been firmly on the defensive and there appears to be no real offensive strategy in winning users; Bring the JS engine up to par, normalise the design, etc. But as pointed out, there was an opportunity to wrestle reader fans towards Firefox on multiple platforms (Desktop and Android) with a feeds-in-a-tab model (e.g. the Brief extension) and that was neglected in favour of cruft (Reader Mode and the Dynamic Actionbar on Android are prime examples of this). There has been no commitment to innovative thinking. In fact, what exactly is Firefox planning going forward? Luckily for Product Management and the UX Team, they've had a bunch of ideas poached by the opposition and have managed to use that in order to become a much less transparent organisation.

Desktop has become quite stale in terms of real innovation across the board (so I'm including Chrome, Opera and Internet Explorer here) and once Australis lands, I'm curious to see what Firefox will do. Mozilla as an organisation became so defensive that Labs is dead and a similar fate was had for Thunderbird, which was in fact a method to garner more users for Firefox by being a gateway. The Evangelism department seems to lack any personnel because the self-esteem of the product appears to be at an all-time low. Which is why there's a failure to seek new business opportunities like partnerships with Android OEMs to bundle Firefox as the stock browser in their UI overlays or the fact there's no image search included in the browser and text search is absent from Android. In short, desktop numbers may fluctuate around the 20% mark, but that's where it will stay based on the product alone; at this point, you have to build brand loyalty. That is the hope with Firefox OS in the third-world, but the first-world has been neglected to create that opportunity. Also poor product perception management in the past means that whenever you see a debate about browsers, Firefox is plagued with FUD views regarding memory and speed. Firefox's best hope in regards to fighting that is the re-invention of the product, and Australis is the key to that. However, once again, that's a fundamentally defensive move.

Rodze
 
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Post Posted March 28th, 2013, 8:59 am

nadark wrote:http://limi.net/checkboxes-that-kill

Alex Limi (Mozilla’s head of project design strategy) complains that Firefox has too many checkboxes and customizability should be removed.

Sometimes I really hate the stuff I read on bugzilla and mozilla blogs.


What a waste of his time.

He could have surmised it in one sentence: "We want to copy Chrome and hide away advanced settings."

Srap
 
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Post Posted March 28th, 2013, 9:21 am

Rodze wrote:
nadark wrote:
Alex Limi (Mozilla’s head of project design strategy) complains that Firefox has too many checkboxes and customizability should be removed.

Sometimes I really hate the stuff I read on bugzilla and mozilla blogs.


What a waste of his time.

He could have surmised it in one sentence: "We want to copy Chrome and hide away advanced settings."

I wonder how often are they used, actually, in what case are these options can be useful?
Sorry for my bad English. Even if there wasn't a mistake.

SaphirJD
 
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Post Posted March 28th, 2013, 2:37 pm

Hmm... I really like that rounded tabs.. But the rest... seems that Australis will kill a lot of adons and themes thanks to that "simplification"

Night Launch Theme Screwed up, Status 4 Ever not working anymore.... And for sure much more not function as they should... Hopefully there is some easy solution for adons and Theme Creators so that we do not see a large vanishing of Themes and Adons..... But for sure quite a lot will give up, if that Change comes to the final.

Omega X

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Post Posted March 28th, 2013, 3:14 pm

Addon makers will just cut a hole into Australis if they're not given an option. Not sure what theme makers left that will tackle things post Australocalypse.

@Rodze

He has to try and justify the changes to his peers not on the UX Team. Saying "were copying chrome again" sends a tainted message.
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Post Posted March 28th, 2013, 3:44 pm

Omega X wrote:Addon makers will just cut a hole into Australis if they're not given an option. Not sure what theme makers left that will tackle things post Australocalypse.

@Rodze

He has to try and justify the changes to his peers not on the UX Team. Saying "were copying chrome again" sends a tainted message.


There are hardly any themes left that are compatible with the latest Firefox release. A Persona now installs like a theme and if these theme developers do not keep up that is all that will be left.

Drumbrake

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Post Posted March 28th, 2013, 3:50 pm

Again,just like Chrome ](*,)

No more full themes,just personas...great :(

marty60
 
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Post Posted March 28th, 2013, 4:05 pm

sabret00the, yes it's true Chrome took some users away but like all shiny new things it gets old after a while. I read posts on the internet and the main selling point for Firefox is customization. I agree no software stays the same but they seem to have bought into the Google philosophy that less is more and the only purpose of a browser is to keep us safe.

Security is important but there's more to it than that. I don't know what's up with the obsession the developers have with the UI but as it has been stated already on the thread it's not what most users complain about. For those of us who pay attention we'll get updated addons (hopefully) while who knows how many novices move onto something else in frustration.

malliz
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Post Posted March 28th, 2013, 4:14 pm

Usually when developers say simplification they mean this will save us work. You also have the fact that Asa Dotzler would like to see third party themes disappear completely.
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Briscoe
 
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Post Posted March 28th, 2013, 4:29 pm

I would like to see Asa Dotzler disappear.

malliz
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Post Posted March 28th, 2013, 4:34 pm

Not going to happen, who else would employ him?
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mightyglydd

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Post Posted March 28th, 2013, 7:18 pm

malliz wrote: else would employ him?

The Tree People ?
http://www.treepeople.org/
#KeepFightingMichael

JayhawksRock

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Post Posted March 28th, 2013, 7:55 pm

mightyglydd wrote:
malliz wrote: else would employ him?

The Tree People ?
http://www.treepeople.org/

Would not work... He would want to trim off all of the branches as they are unnecessary optional addons that go in random directions.. And sadly the tree will die.
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RandyZie

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Post Posted March 28th, 2013, 8:15 pm

JayhawksRock wrote:
mightyglydd wrote:
malliz wrote: else would employ him?

The Tree People ?
http://www.treepeople.org/

Would not work... He would want to trim off all of the branches as they are unnecessary optional addons that go in random directions.. And sadly the tree will die.

:lol: :lol: =D>

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