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    This change avoids user confusion and leaking information to other users of the computer. It don’t leak information. It’s probably a good change:

    • Logging out of Google -> Logging out of Chrome

    This change is probably as likely to avoid user confusion as cause it. However it avoids leaking information to other users of the computer and doesn’t leak information to google. It’s probably a good change.

    • Logging out of Chrome -> Logging out of Google

    This change is probably mildly convenient for users, and probably avoids confusion. It doesn’t leak information, but it will cause some unsophisticated users to unknowingly overshare information with google. I’m basically ok with it.

    • Logging into Chrome -> Logging into Google

    This change leaks information to Google, is surprising behavior, and avoids no confusion. This is why I will not use Chrome to interact with Google services.

    • Logging into Google -> Logging into Chrome.

    The reasons cited in the article unsurprisingly only support changes 1 and 2.

    1. 4

      I have first hand watched this confusion among my less-technical family. The “logged into Chrome” versus “logged into Gmail” issue. I think for the very non-technical, those two things aren’t as obviously different to them as it might be to someone who has a better idea of the boundaries between things.

      I suspect for most users, this will be their computers just “doing what they want”.

    2. 17

      Please, no links to Twitter as tech stories. It’s more like “a story forming” than anything else and rarely results in reasonable discussion. (In this case, there is already a correction issued in the thread that undermines the claim in the title.)

      Lobste.rs is not a breaking news site. Those are elsewhere.

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        Proposal: by default, lobste.rs should reject stories that link to Twitter. There may be reasonable exceptions to this rule, but I can’t think of them right now.

        1. 4

          I’m opposed to having breaking news stories, as on Hacker News where the top article of the Guardian about any random non-tech story makes it to the front page of HN, this I’m not a fan of.

          However, Twitter posts about technical issues should be evaluated on their own merit (that’s why we have downvotes/upvotes after all). In this particular case, in my opinion the “correction” doesn’t undermine the post, as recreating the cookies immediately and automatically is not much better than not deleting them, and so it’s still worth discussing the story.

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            Usually I find this to be the case but for this story there really is nothing more to be said than the screenshot. Sure some news website could fluff it up with a bunch of useless text but the screenshot shows you all you need to know

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            People shouldn’t be so surprised that a browser built by an advertisement company doesn’t have their best interest at heart when it comes to tracking and privacy.

            This is just another illustration why it is important to have a truly free alternative browser like Mozilla Firefox.

            1. 4

              It’s all easy to tell people to switch from X to Y (browser, OS, antivirus, etc.) but you can’t just go preaching when the alternatives aren’t quite the same. Sure you have Firefox (or any other flavour) and while I’d love to fully switch, it isn’t quite there yet. You can tell people to switch to some Linux distro or to install LineageOS but that comes with losing certain features or apps (try doing gamedev from Linux for example).

              And Firefox won over IE because it was better not for the fact IE back in the XP days was crap with its ActiveX madness. And same with the general switch to Chrome, it performed better.

              The bottom line for me is: make better alternatives to cover the general use case and people WILL switch (because their “techy” friend installs it for them) but they probably won’t just to get away from privacy issues if it gives them less headaches.

              1. 7

                same with the general switch to Chrome, it performed better

                Most people did not care that it performed “better”.

                They just saw the ads. On every google page. Including the search front page.

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                  Pretty sure Chrome grew its popularity when Firefox became quite sluggish, together with its strong presence in smartphones.

                  1. 8

                    Yeah, it is easy to forget how amazing Chrome was versus the competition in 2008. Other browsers were covered in garbage and layers of UI, Chrome was minimalist. When other browsers would crash when you went to a bad webpage, chrome just lost a tab due to the process separation. Even at initial release, Chrome was much faster than the competition. It also had the omnibar which felt like the “right way”.

                  2. 3

                    Watch the Google Chrome announcement video

                    They compare it side-by-side with Internet Explorer. It shows that, for JavaScript, Chrome was around 100 times faster. For rendering it was around 3 times faster. The tab isolation, simpler user experience etc was also a serious win.

                    These types of improvements did matter to a lot of people.

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                      The ads gave Google an opportunity to win people over, but ads alone don’t convince anyone to commit to a product. IMO by the time Chrome ads started popping up on Google properties, Chrome had already won.

                      When Chrome came out it had superior UX to Firefox on every front. Performance, extensions, sync, transparent auto-updates, omnibar: everything was better and simpler for the 90% use-case. I specifically remember switching my parents and grandparents to Chrome because they kept getting stuck on old versions of Firefox and/or extensions would randomly stop working (namely ABP; about once a quarter I would get a call complaining that “the ads are back”). Chrome solved that problem for me.

                      I’m a big fan of Mozilla but Firefox has always been a funky browser for nerds. It dominated IE because Microsoft had made zero technical investments for years and years. Firefox has made great strides competing with Chrome, but it hasn’t made any huge leaps and it still has rough edges. I think Mozilla as an organization struggles to put out products that are uncompromisingly great for the non-technical user.

                      1. 2

                        It dominated IE because Microsoft had made zero technical investments for years and years.

                        Uh, when did Firefox “dominate IE”? Even after major EU legal wins, etc, Firefox was second until Chrome came with an even bigger backer that the regulators hadn’t smacked yet and ate everyone’s lunch.

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                          Uh, maybe it was too strong a word. But the market-share numbers are distorted by the incapability of corporate IT to move off IE at that time. That’s why the lifecycles of IE 6/7/8 were so drawn out.

                          My recollection of that era is that anyone who understood what a browser was and had the ability to choose whichever one they wanted was using Firefox.

                        2. 2

                          Wow, I had forgotten auto-update, that might have been the most important feature!

                          When Chrome was released, it actually lacked both extensions and sync, but the per-tab process and auto-update were killer features – plus general performance.

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                            When Chrome was released, it actually lacked both extensions and sync

                            It got them in 2010, shortly before the first release for macOS, which is probably what I’m remembering as the initial release. It didn’t surpass Firefox and IE in market share until 2012.

                        3. 2

                          Most people did not care that it performed “better”.

                          I don’t think this is true. At the time, both IE and FF were very slow and frustrating for people. A crash in either would take down the entire browser. “Updating their browser” was something their tech friends would tell them to do, and they wouldn’t do. Chrome was automatically updated, simpler, faster, more stable (re: crashing) and it was less complicated (at least in UI – omnibar, better on smaller screen). I think it won due to fitness for purpose, not ads.

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                          What about Firefox “isn’t quite there”?

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                            Firefox is not “quite there” because developers today mostly create Chrome apps, and consider other browsers as an afterthought. On desktop, and even more on Android, I often need to switch back to Chrome because the app I’m using doesn’t work on Firefox or is way too slow.

                            Technically it’s very easy to get a website to work on any browser, but we don’t create websites anymore, often even plain text articles are “apps”, with JS all over the place and this is mostly designed to work on Chrome only.

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                              Firefox isn’t quite there because developers don’t target it. Developers don’t target Firefox because it isn’t quite there.

                              I understand and agree with your point, but this isn’t really something Mozilla can do much about (other than actually gaining back market share).

                            2. 4

                              I’ve tried to adopt Firefox seriously many times over the years, but every time the support for multi-user didn’t cut it for me.

                              I maintain two profiles in Chrome, a professional and a personal one. I’ve tried to replicate it with Firefox profiles, then later with containers, but the UX is not fitting my use case.

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                                Firefox lacks Chrome’s --app switch for example. That launches a window without the tab bar and the URL bar (essentially, only a webview). It’s super-sweet. Firefox does not support it out of the box, and all solutions I found involved setting up a separate profile. Chrome allows me to have these “apps” in the same profile, so they have access to the same extensions, I can open tabs from them, in my main browser window.

                                It’s a stupidly powerful feature if you have a few webapps you want to treat as apps instead of tabs.

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                                  That sounds like a very very specific feature though, that maybe 1% of the people might use.

                                  For the rest, Firefox is a perfectly good browser which (so far) seems to follow better privacy practices than Chrome.

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                                    That sounds like a very very specific feature though, that maybe 1% of the people might use.

                                    You’d be surprised how many people use this. Makes it so much easier to use a website as an app, and unlike the common Electron apps, allows one to use extensions with it. But even if only 1% used it, for that 1%, Firefox is not quite there.

                                    Also, Electron. Tons of stuff is built on it, and it uses Chrome under the hood.

                                    Firefox is a perfectly good browser which (so far) seems to follow better privacy practices than Chrome.

                                    Yeah, like those experiments, or DNS-over-HTTPS which sends all DNS requests to Cloudflare. Or the integrated Pocket. Those might spy on me less, but it’s only marginally better.

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                                      I hope for your sake that it’s way more than 1% usage. Google has a history of removing features that not many people use [1].

                                      [1] I still prefer using Google Maps over anyone else but over time, I’ve had features I use removed due to lack of utilization. It’s annoying. Second only to the UI constantly changing.

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                                        I believe a place that chrome apps are more commonly used is enterprise. It basically gives an easy way to put your internal CRUD webapp on the start menu with an icon and if you use the extended support some additional features. I suspect this is what keeps –app alive more than the at-home users use of it.

                                        I have seen orgs with 30+ “chrome apps” in the default image. Actually probably the biggest category of apps on those deploys. Nevermind of course Chromebooks.

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                                        But even if only 1% used it, for that 1%, Firefox is not quite there.

                                        That’s nonsense. 1% might use it, and that’s probably an overestimate. For how many of them is it a dealbreaker? Even fewer. Probably far fewer. It’s a really insignificant feature.

                                        Yeah, like those experiments

                                        I don’t know what this means, could you elaborate?

                                        or DNS-over-HTTPS which sends all DNS requests to Cloudflare.

                                        DNS-over-HTTPS does not send all DNS requests to Cloudflare, and even if it did it would still be more secure than insecure DNS which sends all DNS requests to anyone listening, including Cloudflare if they wanted to.

                                        Or the integrated Pocket.

                                        Don’t like it? Don’t use it. I fail to see how this is ‘spying’ on you.

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                                          It’s a really insignificant feature.

                                          For you, yes. For me, it is essential. It doesn’t matter how many use it, for those who do, Firefox is not quite there. For everyone else, it might be, good for them.

                                          I don’t know what this means, could you elaborate?

                                          Look for Firefox studies. Granted, you have to opt in to them right now (like you used to be able to opt in to logging into Chrome), but then you’re opting in to pretty much all studies. This is just a step away from what Chrome’s doing now, and sending your browsing data to third parties, disguised as studies is even less honest.

                                          DNS-over-HTTPS does not send all DNS requests to Cloudflare, and even if it did it would still be more secure than insecure DNS which sends all DNS requests to anyone listening, including Cloudflare if they wanted to.

                                          Err, yes, it does send all DNS requests originating from Firefox through Cloudflare. It does fall back to regular DNS, but if enabled, it first goes through them. Not saying I trust my ISPs DNS servers, but I do trust my ISP to be far less competent at mining my data than Cloudflare.

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                                            Firefox studies are completely opt-in. They’re in an options window most people apparently never open. To compare this to Google forcing you to send them all your browsing data if you so much as log into GMail through their browser is ridiculous.

                                            DNS over HTTPS

                                            Doesn’t even look like this is out of nightly, it’s a feature you have to enable through the about:config page… I mean come on man, you cannot seriously be arguing this is a breach of privacy. They’re both completely opt-in.

                                            DNS over HTTPS sends your DNS traffic to a DNS-over-HTTPS provider. I’m sure it’s possible to change which provider it is. I wouldn’t be surprised if Google switched DNS in Chrome to go to 8.8.8.8 by default anyway. Certainly they widely encourage people to do so without telling them that this gives Google again all their browsing history, and more besides.

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                                                Firefox studies are completely opt-in

                                                So was Chrome’s login until recently. I’m not going to trust a for-profit corporation to respect my privacy forever. Especially when those studies are marketed as harmless things, yet, send a whole lot of data to third parties (not even to Mozilla, but third parties).

                                                I’m sure it’s possible to change which provider it is

                                                It is, but there are currently two public DNS-over-HTTPS providers: Cloudflare and Google. Yay. You can run your own, yes, but not even 0.1% of users will ever do that. Besides you can also disable Chrome’s login thing if you really want to, with a flag: go to chrome://flags/#account-consistency, and set it to disabled.

                                                It’s an internal flag, and may or may not go away, but for the moment, it gets the job done, and I get to keep –app too.

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                                                  So was Chrome’s login until recently.

                                                  It isn’t now. Now is what matters.

                                                  I’m not going to trust a for-profit corporation to respect my privacy forever.

                                                  Then why are you trusting Google to respect your privacy, given that they have never done so and Mozilla have nearly always done so. Mozilla has always acted in good faith wrt. privacy. Google has not. Yet you defend Google and attack Mozilla. Why?

                                                  Especially when those studies are marketed as harmless things, yet, send a whole lot of data to third parties (not even to Mozilla, but third parties).

                                                  So don’t enable them then. They’re completely optional and opt-in. I don’t understand why you think being able to opt into something is anywhere near comparable to being forced to give data.

                                                  It is, but there are currently two public DNS-over-HTTPS providers: Cloudflare and Google. Yay. You can run your own, yes, but not even 0.1% of users will ever do that.

                                                  So don’t enable it then. How is it Mozilla’s fault there aren’t more DNS-over-HTTPS providers? Get your ISP to provide it.

                                                  Besides you can also disable Chrome’s login thing if you really want to, with a flag: go to chrome://flags/#account-consistency, and set it to disabled.

                                                  It’s opt-out, in other words. Opt-out = might as well be mandatory for most users. On the other hand, opt-in = might as well not exist for most users. Most users are never ever going to enable anything opt-in and never ever going to disable anything opt-out.

                                                  It’s an internal flag, and may or may not go away, but for the moment, it gets the job done, and I get to keep –app too.

                                                  I’ve already explained how you can get the same functionality as --app in Firefox: go fullscreen, disable toolbars.

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                                                    Now is what matters.

                                                    Now I can disable the sign-off in Chrome and Chromium. Chromium doesn’t send my data to Google. They both support the feature I want. If now is all that matters, then there is zero argument in favour of Firefox, as Chromium does precisely what I want, and am already using it.

                                                    Thank you.

                                      3. 3

                                        Firefox and Chrome have different sets of features. They overlap significantly but not exactly. It’s easy to cherry-pick features either of them have that the other doesn’t. That doesn’t mean that Firefox isn’t a perfectly acceptable replacement for Chrome.

                                        I have no clue why you’d want to launch a window without a tab bar and URL bar. Oh no, a couple of bars at the top of my screen, that’s far worse than sending all my browsing history to Google.

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                                          That doesn’t mean that Firefox isn’t a perfectly acceptable replacement for Chrome.

                                          It is, if you don’t need the features it does not have. If you do, it is a deal breaker. (No size fits all and all that)

                                          I have no clue why you’d want to launch a window without a tab bar and URL bar.

                                          And I have no clue why you’d want to launch more than one browser window with tab and URL bars. But, to illustrate: I have two screens, and on my secondary, I have Mastodon & Discord open, in a frame-less chrome window. Whatever link I click there, if it leads away from the domain, it opens in a new tab. I never leave the “app” itself. Why would I need a tab and an URL bar there? Those just make it too easy to navigate away. Not having them removes that problem, and also makes them look almost like a native app, which is great.

                                          Small thing, yes, but so convenient that I’d rather patch Chrome to remove the login requirement than to figure out how to do the same with firefox. The former is considerably easier.

                                          If you don’t need this feature, sure, use Firefox or whatever.

                                          (Note: I’m not saying Chrome is better. It isn’t. I’m saying Firefox lacks useful features Chrome has, and as such, is not quite there for those of us who want those features. I’d love to switch way from Chrome, but haven’t found a browser that supports the extensions I use, and app windows. As soon as I find one, I’ll be jumping ship. I’m pretty sure it won’t be Firefox though.)

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                                            FF actually had the “apps” feature before Chrome even was released.

                                            Sadly it was killed off.

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                                              Yeah, I remembered Firefox having it, and arrived at the same page, and was even more disappointed :/

                                              Mind you, Prism isn’t the same - it’s separate from the main browser, chrome’s –app is not (and that’s the great thing about it; I can get the separate think with Firefox with a kiosk add-on, but that’s not what I’m aiming for).

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                                                It actually felt very similar, I would go so far as to say most of the way Chrome’s –app was inspired by the Prism extension. It used the same core in a different XULrunner and could be created just like you do in Chrome from the menu. Created desktop icons, had unique window idents, the whole deal. It had to be a bit more separate because back then there wasn’t process isolation per tab in FF, and one of prisms major goals was to avoid crashing the main browser.

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                                              In Firefox in full screen mode you can hide toolbars (includes URL bar and tab bar). I use this to watch full screen videos sometimes. You don’t have to have it actually covering your full screen either, if you use a proper window manager like dwm that can resize windows that ask to be fullscreen.

                                              I really mean no offence when I say this, but your argument is bad. You can’t have everything you want. If you prioritise ‘app windows’ over security and privacy that’s your call, of course, but it’s a bad argument to claim that Firefox isn’t a satisfactory replacement for Chrome because it doesn’t have ‘app windows’. By that logic, Chrome is a wholly unsatisfactory replacement for Firefox, for the reason that it’s insecure crap that gives all my browsing data to Google…

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                                                You just said they made a bad argument… then in literally the next sentence admitted that for their requirements it was a good argument… they DO prioritize ‘app windows’.

                                                Their argument was simply that it isn’t a “perfectly acceptable replacement” within the requirements they laid forth of “having app window support”. This makes their argument well reasoned and coherent. If you want to attack one of their premises, you can do that – but that is another argument.

                                                You then go on to attack the premise and claim their requirement is not an actual requirement, and can be replaced with some set of outside tooling. I don’t believe you proved your case on that front based on the short point you made about dwn. They referenced other features as well.

                                                I personally have unsuccessfully tried to replace chrome apps a number of times with FF or even other browsers. I never got it working the way I wanted it – window identification issues mostly, and in a few cases webapps not playing well with being forcefully resized. So currently I use chrome only for these “apps” and I use FF as my primary browser.

                                                As for Chrome not being a satisfactory replacement for FF for you – that also seems to be true. With your implied premise of being opposed to Google’s data collection practices, obviously Chrome is unacceptable for you. That argument is also coherent with those premises. I won’t say you have a “bad argument” because within the premises you implied, it is a good one. You value different things – neither argument is bad or wrong.

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                                                  In short: their argument was a response to a question asking why Firefox was not generally suitable as a replacement for Chrome. In that context it’s bad.

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                                                    That doesn’t mean that Firefox isn’t a perfectly acceptable replacement for Chrome.

                                                    Your high bar of “perfectly acceptable” was simply not met. It lacks features the poster needs. If you claim features don’t matter then what does exactly?

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                                                      In short: their argument was a response to a question asking why Firefox was not generally suitable as a replacement for Chrome. In that context it’s bad.

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                                                  But I don’t run those windows full screen - they’re clamped to a screen half, so fullscreen is not an option. Been there, tried it. I could change my WM, but that’s another workaround that doesn’t work, because then I’d have to switch to one that can resize fullscreen apps, and still do everything my current one does. No thanks. I’ll patch the login stuff out of Chrome instead.

                                                  And yes, Chrome is crap. But I can work around its most recent stupid far more easily than I can add app windows to Firefox. So Chrome is still a better browser for me, unfortunately.

                                                  Again, I’m not saying Firefox is not a satisfactory replacement for most people. I’m saying it is not suitable for me, that there are things in Chrome that Firefox does not have, yet, people depend on, and for those people, Firefox is not quite there yet.

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                                                    But I don’t run those windows full screen - they’re clamped to a screen half, so fullscreen is not an option. Been there, tried it. I could change my WM, but that’s another workaround that doesn’t work, because then I’d have to switch to one that can resize fullscreen apps, and still do everything my current one does. No thanks. I’ll patch the login stuff out of Chrome instead.

                                                    So in other words the problem is that you’re using a crap window manager. How is that Firefox’s fault? You choose to use a crap WM, that’s fine, but don’t go around threads about browsers crapping on Firefox just because you make poor choices elsewhere in your setup.

                                                    You can’t patch anything out of Chrome. Doesn’t work like that. You can patch Chromium, but Chromium isn’t Chrome.

                                                    And yes, Chrome is crap. But I can work around its most recent stupid far more easily than I can add app windows to Firefox. So Chrome is still a better browser for me, unfortunately.

                                                    No, you cannot work around Chrome sending all your browsing data to Google. Chrome is built from the ground up to send your browsing data to Google. It’s untrusted proprietary software. You cannot work around that.

                                                    Again, I’m not saying Firefox is not a satisfactory replacement for most people. I’m saying it is not suitable for me, that there are things in Chrome that Firefox does not have, yet, people depend on, and for those people, Firefox is not quite there yet.

                                                    You were defending the comment that said ‘It’s all easy to tell people to switch from X to Y (browser, OS, antivirus, etc.) but you can’t just go preaching when the alternatives aren’t quite the same. Sure you have Firefox (or any other flavour) and while I’d love to fully switch, it isn’t quite there yet.’ I’m sorry, but that’s a broad statement about Firefox that suggests it’s missing important core browsing features. Not that it’s missing some tiny obscure feature you personally use but which most people have never heard of and wouldn’t want anyway.

                                                    (and which you can emulate in Firefox if you use a decent window manager)

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                                                      So in other words the problem is that you’re using a crap window manager.

                                                      No, my problem is that Firefox does not implement a feature I use. My window manager is fine, thank you very much. That fact that the only way to make an app emulate a feature I use is to work it around in WM, by ignoring a full screen request and doing something else is not a solution. That is a crude hack.

                                                      You can’t just go around telling people “Go use a different browser and a different WM”. That’s about the same level of good advice as “Tired of systemd? Just go use OpenBSD!”. It doesn’t work like that.

                                                      You can patch Chromium, but Chromium isn’t Chrome.

                                                      Yeah, but I can patch it out from Chromium. Or disable with a flag. And still keep –app, and won’t have to switch to a whole new WM. If I used firefox, my task would be a whole lot harder.

                                                      You were defending the comment that said ‘It’s all easy to tell people to switch from X to Y (browser, OS, antivirus, etc.) but you can’t just go preaching when the alternatives aren’t quite the same. Sure you have Firefox (or any other flavour) and while I’d love to fully switch, it isn’t quite there yet.’

                                                      And I stand by my defense: you can’t tell people to change, when the alternatives lack important features. It just happens YOU don’t consider the same features important. I’ll give you an analogy:

                                                      • I’m tired of systemd, for reason X.
                                                      • Use OpenBSD.
                                                      • But OpenBSD does not support my hardware.
                                                      • It is your fault for making poor hardware choices, it is easy to run OpenBSD on proper hardware.

                                                      That’s how you sound like now.

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                                                        No, my problem is that Firefox does not implement a feature I use. My window manager is fine, thank you very much. That fact that the only way to make an app emulate a feature I use is to work it around in WM, by ignoring a full screen request and doing something else is not a solution. That is a crude hack.

                                                        It’s not a crude hack. It’s a normal expected feature of any window manager: to be able to resize windows.

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                                                          It’s not a crude hack. It’s a normal expected feature of any window manager: to be able to resize windows.

                                                          Not fullscreen ones. Very few can resize those.

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                                                            Most window managers are bad, I guess. Most things are bad.

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                                              How do you use this feature? It sounds interesting, but it’s never occurred to me. When you say ‘webapps’, do you mean browser extensions or things that would ordinarily be packaged as android/iOS apps? Or something else entirely?

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                                                It is even simpler than you are thinking. Basically when you create a “app” out of a website what happens is you get a shortcut that does the following:

                                                • opens a browser instance with no browser ui components, it is just the page loaded in a window.
                                                • gives that window a custom id (so your window manager can tell it apart from other windows for rules and such)
                                                • gives it a taskbar entry
                                                • gives it an icon
                                                • puts a link to it in your menu system if supported
                                                • puts a link to it on your desktop if supported

                                                I use a ton of them, right now I am running in “app” mode:

                                                • IRCCloud
                                                • WhatsApp Web
                                                • Google Keep
                                                • Google Music
                                                • Fastmail Inbox
                                                • Pocketcasts
                                                • Todoist
                                                • Trello
                                                • Tweetdeck
                                                • Dungeon Crawl Web Tiles
                                                • Youtube.TV

                                                I run these as “apps” because I have rules that put them on certain desktops or monitors, and I like them having their own taskbar entries.


                                                I actually use Firefox as my main browser – and one of my annoyances with you these chrome “apps” is that if I click a link from like IRCCloud – it always opens in chrome because well – it is already IN chrome. I wish I could set them up to use the system default browser.

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                                                  The latter, things that would be packaged as android/ios/electron apps. I use slack, discord, mastodon like this, because I want them always-on, without accidentally navigating away, but links still opening in my main window (on another screen), and with my extensions available so I can tweak my experience, block trackers, and so on. Since I want these always on, and separate from my main browser, there is zero purpose for a tab or url bar on them. They feel much more like an app than a browser window would, yet, I have more control than if I ran a (non-free, usually) native app.

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                                                    I segregate websites that are not good actors but that I still use (Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram) using single-site browsers, via Fluid. Fluid uses a completely different local storage instance for every “app” you create, so you don’t have to worry about being tracked around. This allows me to ratchet up the level of privacy I ask for from my browser without worrying about breaking functionality on those web “apps” I use.

                                                    As much as I despise it, this is also why I use the Electron versions of Spotify and Slack.

                                                2. 1

                                                  I was going to say the memory footprint and its overall smoothness but I don’t have data to back that up, so it’s just a feeling.

                                                  I try to go back to FF out of principle but I guess there is something in Chrome which keeps winning me over.

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                                                  Of course Firefox is “there”; it’s been “there” for longer than Chrome’s even existed.

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                                                    make better alternatives to cover the general use case and people WILL switch (because their “techy” friend installs it for them)

                                                    This strategy has never worked.

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                                                    Weird how Google has replaced Microsoft on the “Evil money-making machine using shady strategies” spot of the industry and the later became an apparrently-much-less-evil version of itself.

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                                                      Ah, the halcyon days of 2007, when people swore Google would never be evil like MS was, mostly because they made Gmail, and their motto was “don’t be evil.” Google has masterfully played their cards such that they can extend their data collection capabilities while seducing technologists with the promise that the Open Web(tm) will be the One True Platform to rule them all.

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                                                      I’m already suggesting to people to use ChromeOS through VNC to access the web. I say this to make them realize that the web is heavily controlled by Google.

                                                      IMO, the faster we can get this to happen, the faster people will see why this sucks.

                                                      And then we can start over.

                                                      All the while, Web3 will develop.

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                                                        People wouldn’t care anyways, they just want to click ok and get on with things no matter which measure it’ll involve. Cat GIFs, Netflix’n’chill and “work e-mail” are more important than the fact you’re being fscked by Google or not. Especially in NA, Europeans seem to still pay a little attention, but it’s falling too.

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                                                          Yep, you are totally right. This is why I think ChromeOS plus improvements to their documents platform and YouTube (watch YouTube offer music next) will eventually win out. The only thing Google is missing are games.

                                                          Now what would be insane is if Google bought Valve.

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                                                            You can’t just unilaterally buy a company. The people that own it have to want to sell. And no way in hell is Gabe Newell selling Valve to Google.

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                                                              You can, if it’s public. It’s called a “hostile takeover” and involves buying enough stock to own a vote-proof majority stake.

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                                                                valve is not a public company…

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                                                                  I did not know that.

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                                                              watch YouTube offer music next

                                                              Already happened? https://www.youtube.com/musicpremium or the older https://play.google.com/music/listen

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                                                                Ah, there you go. Now they need to just heavily develop it and maybe re-brand.

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                                                                But what do you think about people actually using computer for serious (not strictly IT related, so I’m intentionally omitting programming/data science/gamedev) tasks, not limited to content consumption?

                                                                • CAD
                                                                • DTP/graphics design
                                                                • Music production/DAWs (side note: due to this overall “macdonaldizing” of modern computing, people in music production community are often going “dawless” using only bare metal, often analog, hardware to generate and process their tracks, sometimes using a computer only for final track mix/postproc, but recently there’s a trend to release a hardware to arrange that too - Elektron Octatrack, Synthstrom Deluge, MPC X, and so on)
                                                                • Medical data processing/analyzing (MRI)
                                                                • countless other industry-specific tasks being actually made easier by using computers, as they’re the reason why computers have been made useful out of the universities

                                                                How they have to survive in next decades? I think in next 10 years Windows won’t be a “pro” platform anymore (dropping Win32 is their only hope now) but mostly meant to click on the internet and do normie stuff, maybe gaming (by adopting current-gen Xbox runtime on regular PCs), macOS is already only a shadow of its former glory. Desktop Linux is more likely to be a thing than never before (Valve’s recent revelations, kernel being legally pwned by top modern Silicon Valley giants, and so on) but I can’t really imagine all of that industry stuff being ported on Linux, even if I know about some porting R&D happening for some large products, but they’re more or less taken as a pet projects, even internally.

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                                                                  I think in next 10 years Windows won’t be a “pro” platform anymore (dropping Win32 is their only hope now)

                                                                  Microsoft cannot drop Win32. Such a thing entirely kills Windows, which is still a good cash cow, and creating a new OS, which is what they’d be left to supposing your drop of the most important asset, is a waste of resources. I’m not sure what replacement you could possibly have in mind while still calling it Windows. Nothing big is about to happen there within your 10 years. Maybe afterwards. It’s like with UNIX/POSIX, that won’t die either anytime soon.

                                                                  It’s easy to be blinded by consumers. There is still going to be large demand for “serious” software, though it might become reconceptualized with AR and other interfaces. You cannot remove the need, you can change the means.

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                                                                    For “serious” users, nothing will change. There will be less vendors maybe, but the amount of “custom computing” (GENERAL PURPOSE COMPUTING) will always be massive in academia and business. We are not at risk.

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                                                                      And at prices that only academia and business can afford. I think the era of “home computer” (that is a general purpose computer) is nearly dead, if not already dead.

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                                                                        I think the era of “home computer” (that is a general purpose computer) is nearly dead, if not already dead.

                                                                        I think you are right, makes me happy I was part of the generation that got to see the computer and internet sort of come of age.

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                                                                    Now what would be insane is if Google bought Valve.

                                                                    Valves don’t actually make games. For distributing games, gooble already has the play store.

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                                                                      It’s not about making games. It’s about having the platform, and every juicy piece of data that comes with.

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                                                                        They do make some games, Half-Life series, Portal series, Dota 2 and Artifact for example

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                                                                        The only thing Google is missing are games.

                                                                        Google Play Games - Quite a few (the majority?) of games on Android use this.

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                                                                          I don’t know any AAA games released on Google Play. But that’s next I guess.

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                                                                            Well, Hearthstone for one. I’d argue that’s an AAA game.

                                                                            That said, non “AAA” titles also make up a lot of the market. Quite a lot of people who wouldn’t be caught playing on a PC or console play games casually on their smartphone (candy crush type stuff). It makes a lot of money.

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                                                                    Couple popular twitter threads about it, one about the UX with screenshots, one criticizing it as part of a larger pattern. And a former Chrome dev walks through the feature.

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                                                                      I wonder if anyone has figured out how this works on an API level. Do Google sites have access to some sort of special JS API that gives them auth info for the Chrome login? Does the browser tack some extra headers onto requests going to Google servers? I’m wondering if there are any security implications to this, or ways for other actors, malicious or helpful, to leverage any of these features.

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                                                                        From reading it works in Chromium too – so I guess you could probably look at recent updates to find the secret sauce.

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                                                                        Brief correction: Cookies seem to get removed and re-created immediately. At least the cookie content and creation date seems to change. Nonetheless: After hitting the “remove all” button you still don’t end up with an empty cookie jar.

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                                                                          Recreating the cookies immediately and automatically is not much better. If anything it will give Google another data point, which is the date and time when the user tried to clear all their data.

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                                                                          Well that’s disappointing. I’m slowly moving off Google products, but Chrome is still the most useful browser IME, especially when doing web dev. For a little while I’ve been running logged-out Chrome but still occasionally need docs/drive/gmail. Looks like it’s time to find another solution.

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                                                                            What shortcomings have you found with the Firefox dev tools? Admittedly I don’t do (heavy) web dev, but they look almost identical to me. Would be interesting hearing a perspective from someone who does do web development.

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                                                                              This was from a while back. I’ve just now switched to FF and I’ll see how it goes

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                                                                                FF Nightly user here. The Javascript debugger and devtools aren’t as good as Chrome’s. The CSS devtools are a lot better though.

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                                                                                  After half a day with FF, my main issues are:

                                                                                  • one busy tab locks up the whole browser. Still. This was why I switched to Chrome all those years ago
                                                                                  • devtools (especially the debugger) seems slower and flakier.
                                                                                  • page load for JS heavy sites seems significantly slower

                                                                                  Otherwise, I don’t mind it. I think I’ll stick to chrome for dev, and use FF as my main browser for a while.

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                                                                                    Mostly I find them unreliable; things will randomly not show up in the elements pane, or it’ll take several seconds to switch views. The source browser is pretty slow in both, but slower in firefox.

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                                                                                  Why was the author using Chrome in the first place? I’d be curious to know the rationale.

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                                                                                    Let’s not forget the past: Chrome was/is a great browser when it came out.

                                                                                    It’s like saying why people ever used an iPhone when it was pretty revolutionary when it came out.

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                                                                                      I switched to it because Mozilla got unusably slow on an older machine I had. Then, they started working on improving CPU and memory use. I switched back. It was stagnant, but working, for a while. Then they released Project Quantum version to speed everything up. Maybe on new hardware: mine slowed back down. Back to Chrome.

                                                                                      A tiny difference between the two would be OK. What I experienced was huge. Prolly also helps that I think using Web equals being surveilled in many ways any way.

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                                                                                      Basically, synchronize feature is broken in Chrome 69 and onwards if you don’t have a Google account.

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                                                                                        cryptographyengineering.com?! That’s a valid and legitimate domain name, seriously?!

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                                                                                          Why wouldn’t it be?

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                                                                                            Why is your response shorter than the name in question?!

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                                                                                              I am sincerely asking what you thought was invalid or illegitimate about it.

                                                                                              http://www.thelongestdomainnameintheworldandthensomeandthensomemoreandmore.com/

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                                                                                                http://www.theofficialabsolutelongestdomainnameregisteredontheworldwideweb.international/

                                                                                                Apparently there’s a 63 character limit, so you have to use a long gtld (like international) to get the actual longest domain possible.

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