Suicide by thousand cuts

Firefox has finally upgraded for me to the localhost version and apparently the developers (or rather some other “creative” people, I suspect) decided to make it more secure by being unusable.

The first thing I noticed is that the last tab refused to close and now you need to close the window—that’s annoying. Then I noticed that bookmarks have disappeared from the toolbar and no matter what you do you can only get an additional blank space shown—at least they’re still accessible through the menu. Then I noticed that downloads may run but they’re not reported—now that’s extremely annoying. And cherry on the top is that closed tabs cannot be restored and recent history remains blank—now that’s borderline unusable.

And apparently the reason is that I’m using the browser wrong. From what I read, they decided to “protect” user data by introducing a session password which you apparently need to enter at the each session start. And considering that I power off (most of) my computers at night and usually launch browser for a quick private session (usually to check news or search for something and not clutter my history with URLs from the search pages and bad results) that means unwanted annoyance many times a day. And of course since I had no reason to launch the browser in non-private mode for many months, the change went completely unnoticed (and when they got rid of XUL even I knew that in advance despite not following the news that much).

Unrequested changes (like changing GUI layout, adding Pocket and so on) build up annoyance and breaking things like this make me consider using another browser. For now I see no real alternative (maybe one of its forks is good without me knowing it, or Servo or Ladybird will become usable for my needs), so I simply downgraded to version 126 for time being and switched off auto-updating but I should use dillo and elinks more.

P.S. One of the reasons why I switched to my own video player was that the previous one I used also decided to “improve” user experience in suspiciously similar ways (by not doing what it did because you apparently don’t know what you’re doing and by interpreting things differently). I definitely don’t want to get into browser development (and I lack hardware for that too) but I need to consider that option…

2 Responses to “Suicide by thousand cuts”

  1. Paul says:

    Opera and mpv still works fine.

    I replaced firefox because it randomly would hang single open tab, and would start spinning disk for no reason whatever. Also it now have splash welcome screens (for kids maybe?) and that are not-appealing for higher than average intelligence user.

  2. Kostya says:

    Opera (or Vivaldi, or Brave) is Chromium in disguise, so I’ll pass. And guess what multimedia player I mentioned in the post of getting annoying in the same way as Firefox (I have not seen welcome screens in either but it might be just my luck).

    And here’s an unrelated Shaw’s Principle: make a system any idiot can use and only an idiot would want to use it.

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