Firefox 3.5 Beta 4 significantly faster in Linux

Let’s face it, Firefox isn’t exactly the fastest browser around. In Linux it’s worse, in fact, Windows Firefox through Wine in Linux is faster than Linux Firefox.

Tuxradar benchmark Firefox 3.5 Beta 4’s performance and the results are very optimistic.

I use Firefox and Opera in Ubuntu and I prefer Opera in terms of speed but it just never felt quite like a native application in Ubuntu. Firefox just doesn’t appear as responsive sometimes.

Google releases Google Chrome Beta

Last December they took the beta tag off Chrome. It’s a rather stable browser already. Today they released a beta for Google Chrome. This is moving pretty fast. In the new beta is some new features:

  • JavaScript speedier
  • form autofill
  • full page zoom
  • autoscroll
  • side by side view

Take a look at window management feature. This is really redundant in Windows 7 which is still in beta.

Window Management

JavaScript is promised to be faster too. (Source: Google blog)

And of course get the beta here.

Microsoft Paint screenshots in Windows 7

The new Microsoft Paint in Windows 7 is wonderful. Gone are pixelated art. Microsoft Paint upgrades are now looks pretty for simple image manipulation. Of course, if you’re asking for more, Microsoft Paint still lacks the features of GIMP and Photoshop but it’s got decent at least. As you can see it has adopted Microsoft Office’s ribbon interface.

Microsoft paint in Windows 7 overview
Microsoft paint in Windows 7 overview

I painted a tree as I would have during kindergarten. I love trees so long as they don’t come with chameleons.

Microsoft paint in Windows 7 lets you choose some brushes
Microsoft paint in Windows 7 lets you choose some brushes

The new brush feature is great. I choose water color. There’s others to play with.

And some shapes too.
And some shapes too.

Simple shapes kinda remind me of Microsoft Office, still cool of course.

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You can also view grids and ruler in Microsoft Paint
You can also view grids and rular in Microsoft Paint

I never like rulers and grids. Found them too restrictive but it’s there so…

Here are the formats you can save as in Microsoft Paint
Here are the formats you can save as in Microsoft Paint

Microsoft Paint lets you save in common image formats. I should highlight that the default save is PNG.

All in all, Microsoft Paint in Windows 7 is definitely an improvement. In the previous versions of Windows (even in Vista), Windows Paint is rather limited. This makes any form of improvement a significant one. I wouldn’t say it’s genius but let’s just say you would see me paint with Microsoft Paint a lot more from now on. Love the look and feel.

Windows Media Player 12 beta screenshots in Windows 7

I just want to say that using Windows Media Player 12 in Windows 7 is a terrific experience. Firstly the music files actually open immediately. This is far from the Windows Vista experience where it takes roughly 300 ms to open an MP3 file. You may think dude it’s just 300 ms but these things matters. The library is also more responsive.

I never understood what the cute colors meant:

Windows Media Player library

(Windows Media Player library.)

I noticed the album finder got better too:

Finding album information in Windows Media Player

(Finding album information in Windows Media Player.) Continue reading “Windows Media Player 12 beta screenshots in Windows 7”

Screenshot of Windows 7’s new calculator Programmer mode

Here’s the calculator in Windows 7. It’s got 4 modes, basic, scientific, programmer and statistics:

Windows 7 calculator different modes

(The different modes of Windows 7 calculator.)

I don’t know why there is “programmer” in the list. I thought “Programming” would probably be a better choice. Better yet:

  1. Normal human
  2. Scientist
  3. Programmer
  4. Statistician

This is how the normal human calculator looks like:

Windows 7 calculator basic

(Windows 7 calculator basic.)

Nothing new here for scientists. It just looks prettier but I add the impression that scientist don’t like pretty things.

Windows 7 calculator scientific

(Windows 7 calculator scientific.)

The new “Programmer” mode. Displays 64 bits nicely for you:

Windows 7 calculator programmer

(Windows 7 calculator programmer.)

And for the statistician, I am apparently not a statistician, I don’t know what I did to get the value. Perhaps someone can enlighten me what the orange-lit button meant:

Windows 7 calculator statistics

(Windows 7 calculator statistics.)

It makes me happy to see the Windows 7 calculator. It’s an improvement from the age old Windows calculator design.

I went to try Windows 7 Beta

I was going to totally ignore Windows 7 till it is released but I couldn’t resist anything that is marketed to be with the words “faster”, “stable” and yeah basically “faster”. I mean who could resist “faster”. Henceforth, I grant my fingers the liberty to click around and downloaded Windows 7 64-bit. And burnt. And installed. And played. Windows 7 is the yet to be released operating system from Microsoft.

I thought this is be a good time I try if the software I use would work in 64 bit. It did. Well accept a lame anti-virus software but that’s okay. Some software didn’t work on Windows 7 because it requires Windows Vista unfortunately.

I basically want to see these programs running:

  • Java (64 bit)
  • NetBeans
  • XAMPP (I couldn’t get 1.7.0 to work out of my download, perhaps my download is corrupted. But I downloaded xampplite 1.6.8 and it’s runs fine in Windows 7)
  • Microsoft Office 2007 (My guess is that it will run since it’s from Microsoft)
  • Photoshop CS4. (Yes, but I downloaded the 32-bit one. The 64-bit one probably would work too)
  • Notepad++ (I need this.)
  • Windows Live Messenger 2009 (It worked)
  • ESET Anti-virus (I downloaded the 64-bit one)
  • Dropbox (A must have)
  • Live Mesh

The great news is that all of the programs I tried to install actually worked just like that. Live Mesh did not work right and went to disable Windows Aero but a later update has that issue fixed.

But after I played with it, I’m back to using Vista. Most of my school and work stuff is all back in Windows Vista. I probably would migrate to Windows 7 when the operating system has been released. So far, I am very pleased with the new software. It also boost my confidence in 64-bit software. If not for my Windows Vista having so much of my user settings customized, I would have switched to Windows 7. I felt it was indeed, as advertised, faster. There are lots of subtle improvements to the interface too. I probably blog about it some time later next week.

WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 available

WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 has been made available. WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 sports a new user interface, speed enhancements and more. I think the new user interface is worth an SVN checkout. Still WordPress 2.7 remains to be rather premature with some minor bugs yet to be ironed out. I won’t be upgrading this blog right now, but definitely will when it is released.

Speaking of the final release, it will not be available on November 10th as originally scheduled. We are two weeks behind schedule at the moment. We need a little more time to finish the visual design, do a round of user testing against that finished design, and do a proper round of public beta testing. Our plan is to keep working as if Nov. 10 is still the release date. However, instead of releasing the final 2.7 on the 10th, we will make a release candidate available instead. The release candidate is intended to be a high-quality, almost-finished release that we are comfortable recommending for broad use. After Nov. 10, the focus will be on fixing high impact bugs turned up by those of you testing the release candidate. I suspect 2.7 will be ready for final release by the end of November. A specific date will be set as we progress through the public beta cycle and get a feel for how solid the release is. (Source: WordPress blog)

And of course, the WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 download link.