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  1. #1
    SitePoint Member Mr Monkey's Avatar
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    Will Safari for Windows catch on?

    Apple was very successful in bringing iTunes to the PC. But will it enjoy success with Safari for Windows too?

    http://www.apple.com/safari/download/

    Having tried Safari 3.1, it looks nice and familiar to iTunes and Quicktime, but there's no way I'd consider using it over Firefox. There are small annoyances such as not being able to do a Google search from the URL field and not having delicious integration. But the killer feature that Firefox has is its huge range of excellent Add-ons.

    So, we have another average browser to test our websites on. If it behaves behaves in exactly the same way as Safari for Mac then at least it means Windows developers can spend a bit less time testing on Mac, but then that is a big if...

  2. #2
    SitePoint Wizard drhowarddrfine's Avatar
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    I haven't taken the time to look at Safari options and features as I probably should, but in no way is it an 'average' browser otherwise. It's standards compliance is excellent, as is its rendering abilities.

    To ignore Safari is to ignore a lot of Mac people and Macs are really taking off lately.

  3. #3
    . shoooo... silver trophy logic_earth's Avatar
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    Apple made one big mistake with Safari on Windows which will keep its groth small on that platform.

    Instead of keeping to the norm with Windows UI but brought the Mac UI scheme with it. (Including that stupid: can only resize by the lower right corner) Now average users will feel lost with this different UI.

    Now I know it sounds trivial and you wouldn't think as something as simple as the UI would affect how quickly it gets new users. But it does and going against the conventions of the UI the user is used to.

    This logic applies to all operating systems.
    Logic without the fatal effects.
    All code snippets are licensed under WTFPL.


  4. #4
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by logic_earth View Post
    Apple made one big mistake with Safari on Windows which will keep its groth small on that platform.

    Instead of keeping to the norm with Windows UI but brought the Mac UI scheme with it. (Including that stupid: can only resize by the lower right corner) Now average users will feel lost with this different UI.

    Now I know it sounds trivial and you wouldn't think as something as simple as the UI would affect how quickly it gets new users. But it does and going against the conventions of the UI the user is used to.

    This logic applies to all operating systems.
    That will stop the average user from choosing it instead of one of the other browsers however bringing the browser across complete with its regular UI means that all the web page developers will be able to use it more effectively to see how their pages will work on the Mac than would have otherwise been possible without our all having to buy a Mac. By doing Safari the way they have Apple have made it possible for web developers who don't have a Mac to test their pages as if they did have one.
    Stephen J Chapman

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  5. #5
    l 0 l silver trophybronze trophy lo0ol's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by logic_earth View Post
    Instead of keeping to the norm with Windows UI but brought the Mac UI scheme with it. (Including that stupid: can only resize by the lower right corner) Now average users will feel lost with this different UI.
    I mean, I haven't touched Windows for a few years, but I'm pretty sure that's no longer the case.

  6. #6
    . shoooo... silver trophy logic_earth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lo0ol View Post
    I mean, I haven't touched Windows for a few years, but I'm pretty sure that's no longer the case.
    What is no longer the case?
    Logic without the fatal effects.
    All code snippets are licensed under WTFPL.


  7. #7
    SitePoint Wizard megamanXplosion's Avatar
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    Until Safari renders text properly, it doesn't stand a chance.

  8. #8
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by megamanXplosion View Post
    Until Safari renders text properly, it doesn't stand a chance.

    Windows doesn't render text properly so it must not stand a chance either
    Stephen J Chapman

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  9. #9
    SitePoint Wizard megamanXplosion's Avatar
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    How do you figure Windows doesn't render text properly?

  10. #10
    . shoooo... silver trophy logic_earth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by megamanXplosion View Post
    How do you figure Windows doesn't render text properly?
    Because it is preferences completely subjective. There is no right way.
    Logic without the fatal effects.
    All code snippets are licensed under WTFPL.


  11. #11
    SitePoint Wizard megamanXplosion's Avatar
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    I think text rendering preferences are partly, but not completely, subjective. Biology plays a role. Safari's blurry text rendering behavior makes words less distinctive in appearance so one needs to focus more intently on individual words and the thickness of the letters makes it necessary for the eye to travel farther to read a portion of text. The font rendering behavior decreases reading speed and makes reading an unpleasant experience.

  12. #12
    . shoooo... silver trophy logic_earth's Avatar
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    I must be odd then cause on my screen neither of the font smoothing bothers me or affects me in any why.
    Logic without the fatal effects.
    All code snippets are licensed under WTFPL.


  13. #13
    SitePoint Wizard megamanXplosion's Avatar
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    I like Windows' font smoothing, though it needs a tad bit of tweaking to be perfectly in accord with my preference.

    Safari's font smoothing is what bothers me. I just learned, though, that Webkit has rudimentary support for GDI text rendering. This means it will match other Windows browsers in how it draws text to the screen. You have to hack the preference file for Webkit to enable it right now, since the code is currently being tested, but it looks much better. Hopefully the problems will be ironed out before the next release of Safari on Windows so it can be enabled by default

    (Learn how to hack the Webkit preference file to enable GDI text rendering in the latest nightly builds of Webkit.)

  14. #14
    ☆★☆★ silver trophy vgarcia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by megamanXplosion View Post
    Until Safari renders text properly, it doesn't stand a chance.
    it's stood a chance for 3 days then if you think GDI is proper
    http://webkit.org/blog/168/gdi-text-on-windows/

  15. #15
    SitePoint Wizard drhowarddrfine's Avatar
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    Safari, and Macs, are geared toward desktop publishing, while Windows is geared toward text and the web. Mac people think Windows text looks funny and vice-versa.

  16. #16
    ☆★☆★ silver trophy vgarcia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drhowarddrfine View Post
    Safari, and Macs, are geared toward desktop publishing, while Windows is geared toward text and the web. Mac people think Windows text looks funny and vice-versa.
    To elaborate: Windows text smoothing is designed for the best appearance on screen, while Mac text smoothing is designed to best keep the shape of glyphs in a font. OS X is better if you want to see a font as it was designed, Windows is better if you need to read that same font at 6pt

  17. #17
    Obey the Purebreed trib4lmaniac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by logic_earth View Post
    Because it is preferences completely subjective. There is no right way.
    Whilst this is true, Safari does render text differently to everything else. Safari looks completly out of place due to this and its customized chrome. So much so that I can hardly bear to keep it open for extended periods.

    I hope Apple take Safari on Windows seriously though, more competition and more choice is definitely a good thing.

  18. #18
    . shoooo... silver trophy logic_earth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trib4lmaniac View Post
    Whilst this is true, Safari does render text differently to everything else. Safari looks completly out of place due to this and its customized chrome. So much so that I can hardly bear to keep it open for extended periods.

    I hope Apple take Safari on Windows seriously though, more competition and more choice is definitely a good thing.
    Aye pretty much what I said in my first post, Apple went against the conventions of the Windows platform alienating the users.

    It may be good for us as developers to test in. but Apple should have made it an option to use the Windows UI conventions over Mac UI conventions.
    Logic without the fatal effects.
    All code snippets are licensed under WTFPL.


  19. #19
    l 0 l silver trophybronze trophy lo0ol's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by logic_earth View Post
    What is no longer the case?
    Resizing by the lower right corner.

  20. #20
    l 0 l silver trophybronze trophy lo0ol's Avatar
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    Here's the Ars story on 3.1:

    http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post...r-arrives.html

    Talks about the resizing issue, font rendering, etc. Also, WebKit just added a flag to switch font rendering so that if you want Windows native rendering you can have it.

  21. #21
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lo0ol View Post
    Resizing by the lower right corner.
    Did the mac used to limit you to only resizing from the lower right corner? I never knew that. Of course the Windows version allows resizing from any edge the way that Windows has since Windows 3.0 (can't remember if Windows 2.0 allowed it, I know you couldn't resize windows in Windows 1.0).
    Stephen J Chapman

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  22. #22
    . shoooo... silver trophy logic_earth's Avatar
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    Yeah on a Mac you can only resize a window via the lower right corner. Which to be honest is a stupid limitation. Goes hand in hand with the single button mouse.But a least they removed the limitation from the Windows version of Safari. However, it still is not enough.

    If you built an application and went against the Mac's UI scheme you would be castrated to say the least.
    Logic without the fatal effects.
    All code snippets are licensed under WTFPL.


  23. #23
    Function Curry'er JimmyP's Avatar
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    The problem is, to the average user there is nothing special about Safari other than it's UI... especcially when compared to FF/Opera...

    I mean the only reason Joe Bloggs would convert to Safari on a Windows platform would be the UI.

  24. #24
    phpLD Fanatic bronze trophy dvduval's Avatar
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    This is the first I've heard of this (I'm probably slow), but I will definitely try Safari now.

  25. #25
    SitePoint Zealot ricktu's Avatar
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    I have no opinion on this as I have yet to get the damn thing running on this machine. When it isn't crashing it can't render more than half the elements on any page. I've no idea what is causing it in this case but it means I can't test it just yet. I haven't tried it on my laptop yet though.
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