Updated: July 20, 2012
When do you know a company has its thumbs up their arses? When they make bold executive decisions that are contrary to their previous bold executive decisions. Indeed, enter Firefox 14, a bold version of Mozilla's browser that defies the prime directive set by its own upper management. Let me elaborate.
This review will tell you all about the latest version of Firefox 14.0.1, which happens to be auto-updating as we speak, and which is going to give you a whole lot you may not have asked for. While recent Firefox updates are mostly gradual increments, this one happens to be a little more intrusive and infinitely more stupid. Don't trust my word, take a look.
Firefox 14 comes with all kinds of new cool things, because let's face it, it's that time of the month for new and cool things, including but not limited to: a new default theme, new site identity icons and notifications, address bar auto-complete, default HTTPS search for Google, and whatnot. So let's take a look, step by step. This shall be most invigorating and interesting, so stick around for some sad fun.
The first thing that I noticed on one of my Windows installations is that Firefox sports a different kind of default theme. It's still the same one, but the buttons are different, more sort of chromified, if I may use that term. And then, if you look under Add-ons, the old style is still used. Thumb up the arse, number one.
Now, another media hype is why you get default Google HTTPS searches. So that people on your LAN do not intercept your pr0n queries. Security. Right. Completely useless, as your LAN is supposed to be trusted, and in any normal switched corporate network, the promiscuous mode is prohibited, hence unnecessary.
But the best thing is, this does not work for non-dot-com domains. For example, I tried the same thing with google.co.uk, which happens to be my homepage in one of the browser, and you get plain HTTP search. Thumb up the arse, number two.
In line with the new gray-overall-button change, the Site Identity coloring is now gone. You get a simple globe for regular websites and you get a gray padlock for secured sites, which, remember, used to be a mark of insecure, untrusted and self-signed sites in the past. So not only does Mozilla now annoy you with habitual insecurity, since you really must check every site is properly encrypted rather than counting on the color mark, this goes against their previous mission statement. Remember all the drivel about how Site Identity is better than the conventional padlock? And now, it's not. Bullshit. Thumb up the arse, number three, a big fat one.
Oh, and they also removed the default http and https prefixes in the address bar, some time ago. You see them here, because I enabled them. Anyhow, it's just the thing the average moron need to be more effective and safe. Good work on spoonfeeding the Idiocracy generation, that's the way to go.
You can get the colors back with the lovely Site Identity Button Colors addon.
For those who can't be bothered to use arrow keys to find the relevant URLs in their history, there's now an autocomplete feature. Which again, is a privacy breach, because you do not want asph to be auto-completed to asphyxiation when someone else searches for asphalt in your browser. Thumb up the arse, number four.
We almost got a full hand of thumbs, which tells you how silly Powerpoint people can be when they set about proving whatever they want to prove. End result, a confused browser with a metro-sexual identity. What the hell did you try to achieve here, Mozilla?
Why did you change the buttons? What's the point? Why did you make your browser less secure, or at least visually less secure? Why did you introduce a privacy catch for idiots, and why did you not make sure your would-be secure stuff works everywhere? Why did you release this semi-aborted 47-chromosomal fail of a version that does nothing useful or productive? Why do I need to download an extension to get my Site Identity back so that I do not end up selling my kidneys to someone far far away, just because you chose gray as the cool color of confusion? Fail.