Living in Safari in a Firefox world

I’ve had it with Firefox 3. It’s slow, crashy, a resource hog and did I mention it’s slow? Not quite IE 7 slow, but not nearly as fast as I wish it was. Yes, it could be add-ins slowing it down, but I really don’t run that many as you’ll see below. I don’t even use Greasemonkey.

At least until Firefox 3.5 (which I know is as soon as next week) or a release version of Chrome for Mac comes along, I am trying to run with Safari 4 as my default browser. It’s tons faster, especially for heavy sites I live in like Salesforce and Fever. And while it can be as much of a resource hog as Firefox, it takes a lot longer to get to the must-quit-and-restart-this-beast point than Firefox does.

There are some essential add-ins I used in Firefox that have been no problem with the change to Safari:

1Password: This is my secure and getting-better-all-the-time lifeline to all the usernames and passwords I’ve created since 2004 or so. Can’t function online without it. Truth is, I like the way it works in Safari better than Firefox. Rather than an intrusive pop-up to add a new site, the request is just under the tab bar.

Evernote Web Clipper: Fully supported in Safari.

Firebug: Firebox does have a “lite” version for Safari, but I don’t think I need it. Safari’s built-in Web Developer feature isn’t quite as intuitive, but when I just want to figure out which style is causing something to look funky, it more than does the job. You can also turn styles on and off individually, although it doesn’t seem to allow quite the level of editing preview that Firebug does.

To access, you’ll need to select the “Show Develop in Menu Bar” option from the Advanced pane in preferences (used to have to run a Terminal command for this). Then you can bring it up by selecting “Show Web Developer” from the new Develop menu, or highlight an area of the page, right click and select “Inspect Element.”

Xmarks: This keeps my bookmarks in sync across all my browsers across multiple machines and platforms, including my VMWare Fusion virtual machine. Whatever changes I make while Safari is my default will be carried back to Firefox when and if I go back to it (assuming Xmarks is updated for Firefox 3.5, which I’m sure it is or will be).

And here’s where I’m running into some problems:

Remember the Milk for Gmail: I love this add-in. I relied on it so I can star an email and it’s automatically added as a task for me. When I’m ready to work on the task, I can click a little icon on the task in the sidebar it creates for me and the related email comes right up. In the past to break my reliance on it, I’ve tried transitioning to Google Tasks. Couldn’t quite do it. For starters, I must have the ability to create recurring tasks.

So far while in Safari, I’ve added RTM as a gadget in Gmail so I can at least see my tasks without leaving my email page. And I added the Add to RTM bookmarklet for easy access in adding tasks. But nothing is quite as good as the Firefox add-in.

Any RTM-loving Safari users have any tips & tricks?

Tab Mix Plus: Here’s what this add-on allowed me to do that I relied on and miss terribly every time I use Safari:

  • Double click on tab to close and other such behaviors.
  • Force new links from address and search bars to open in new tab. Can I count how many times I’ve forgotten to open a new tab while in Gmail and ended up closing that tab and cursing about it? No, I can’t. Which leads me to…
  • Lock and protect tab position. I like my Gmail tabs open at all times as the first two tabs to the left no matter what else I’m doing.
  • Added a close left/right option to the contextual menu. I don’t want to close all other tabs, just the ones that I’ve opened before or after a certain point. Tab Mix Plus made this easy, Safari 4 does not.
  • Multiple rows of tabs.

Safari’s tab management pales by comparison, and I’m not entirely satisfied with Safari Stand or Saft’s solutions.

Long time Safari users, share your wisdom with me please.


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