x86 tablets arrive, but can they defeat the hordes of other devices?
Is a new wave of mobile x86 chips enough to help Windows fight off Android and iOS?
In October 2012, Windows 8 arrived in two very different flavors. One was the standard x86 version for desktops and laptops. But the other was for Windows RT, a hybrid laptop/tablet device powered by an ARM chip that couldn’t run any x86 software. It wasn’t until the following February that the Surface Pro came out, packed with a conventional Intel CPU. But by then, the damage had been done. It wasn’t until late last year that x86 tablets started trickling out from Asus, Toshiba, and other usual suspects. Surface hybrids remained expensive, while Google’s Android devices invaded price ranges well out of Microsoft’s grasp.
Note: This article was originally featured in the June 2014 issue of the magazine.
Browser maker is reluctant to give up on the idea of sponsored content
Back in February of this year, Mozilla's VP of Content Services, Darren Herman, announced plans to sell advertising space in Firefox in the form of sponsored "Directory Tiles" on a new Tab page. These would consist of pre-packaged content for first-time Firefox users -- upon loading Firefox, they'd see a page with nine tiles in three rows of three, and some of the suggestions would be paid-for content, or ads. That idea didn't go over well with the web community, so Mozilla has decided to abandon sponsored tiles and will experiment with the tab page instead.
Update Chrome to find out which tab is making all that racket
If you consider yourself a power surfer, then it's probably not uncommon for you to have a dozen or so tabs open at any given time. Provided you have enough system RAM to handle that kind of load, there's nothing inherently wrong with loading up a bunch of tabs, but it sure can be annoying one of them starts playing music or an ad out of the blue. One way to track down the culprit is by reloading each tab one-by-one until the noise cuts out -- BAM, there's your culprit. Or you can run the latest version of Chrome (version 32) and see at a glance which tab is blaring through your speakers.
Tabs work for browsing, can they for email as well?
Can you remember surfing the web before tabs? Power surfing has never been the same, and even casual web users can benefit from tabbed browsing. Google didn't invent the concept, nor did the company even popularize tabbed browsing, but it is incorporating tabs of a slightly different kind into its Gmail service on the desktop and mobile. It's almost like a pre-sorting system.
The latest Chrome Beta features the ability to sync tabs across multiple devices, Google revealed in a blog post Tuesday. The ability to sync tabs has been a long time coming as far as Chrome is concerned, with Firefox having had it as an integrated feature since the release of version 4 last year. More after the jump.
It doesn't happen that often, but, sometimes, your favorite Web sites insist on loading links on their pages into a new browser window. That, or you simply like having multiple instances of Chrome running in separate windows-I won't judge your preference. That's cool.
So, when this does happen, how do you go about reducing your multiple windows to a single browser entity that's split into multiple tabs? You could always drag-and-drop these separate windows into a single Chrome instance, but that can be a time-consuming, laborious process depending on just how many different windows you might have open at once. A quaint little extension called JoinTabs eliminates this difficulty by giving you a one-shot button that automatically mashes all of your open windows into one, tab-drenched browser.
For the longest time, Xmarks has been my Firefox bookmark synchronization tool of choice. I've been using it forever, and I can't recall the last time it's presented me with any kind of problem--that's because it never has. Simply put, Xmarks is an amazing tool for keeping your bookmarks in check across multiple installations of the Firefox browser.
But this post isn't about Xmarks. Mozilla itself has released its own synchronization tool dubbed "Weave Browser Sync," and it offers up even more possibilities than the trusty ol' Xmarks add-on. So why am I not fawning over this extension outright and declaring it to be the greatest browser synchronization tool since the sliced bread, er, synchronization utility? Well, a few stability issues reported by other Firefox users have left me a bit cautious to suggest that Weave is the answer to all of your dreams. It's certainly worth trying out, just don't put all your eggs in your woven basket should it not ultimately work on your browser--or worse, accidentally nuke your bookmarks.
Click the jump to find out just how tangled a web Weave has woven!
Oh, BarTab. I wish I had heard of you before I switched over to Google Chrome. As a frequent browser-but-not-bookmarker, I'd often load up my Mozilla Firefox browser with upwards of sixty tabs per new session. Yes, sixty. I'd use tabs instead of bookmarks to keep track of, "stuff you should check out later," only I wouldn't actually get around to clearing through this backlog of open links until days later. I'm a procrastinator for new content, what can I say.
You can just imagine the performance impacts this habit had on my typical browsing session. It didn't bother me that much, performance-wise, on my tricked-out desktop PC. You can bet that my poor laptop wanted to fall over and die at the thought of having to pull up a huge list of pages each time I clicked on the little Firefox icon in the corner of my screen. And regardless of whether my computer could handle the many, many tabs or not, there was still the issue of Firefox having to actually load the content of these pages before I could go about more browsing. Little is more frustrating than having to wait five minutes just to check out a link that a friend sent along because Firefox has to take care of 60 other pages first.
So how, then, does BarTab fix this issue? Why is it a must-have add-on for your Web browsing? Click the jump!
If Firefox loses its marketshare momentum, it won't be because Mozilla's developers are resting on their laurels. On the contrary, programmers are already plugging away on the next version, Firefox 3.1. A recently proposed roadmap points to next month for an alpha debut, with a beta release busting onto the scene in August before finishing up the final code by the end of the year.
In addition to the usual bevy of bug fixes, Firefox 3.1 will incorporate several complimentary features originally pushed to the side in 3.0 due to time constraints. Portions of the Ctrl-Tab extension, such as thumbnail previews of open tabs and tab searching and filtering, are expected to finagle into FF 3.1, along with improved download options, better bookmark tagging, a more powerful location bar, and other goodies.