I Before E...Never Again

  BlueTone Media


College was my first real experience with the internet.  Back then, I was all about using IE (Internet Explorer) in the various computer labs all over UNC-Asheville's campus.  Besides the few weirdos using Netscape Navigator, IE was the browser of choice, and really the only one I considered an option.  And back in that day, it might have been about the only option.

But not anymore.  Today, we have a choice.  For me, I chose Firefox - the web developer's ideal internet browser.  I've only been with BlueTone Media since January, and it took me a few weeks to familiarize myself with Firefox.  I was hesitant at first, IE was so comfortable to me.  Why change?  Then I was introduced to the add-ons of Firefox.  Woah.  There are several add-on tools that Firefox has that I use on a daily basis.  My favorites are:

  • Firebug - allows you to make preview changes to web sites without actually effecting the site.  I can change widths, colors, font-sizes, text, etc. without screwing anything up.  This way, I can figure out exactly what the code for a site needs to be without refreshing a page 50 times.  Perfect for web developers.
  • MeaureIt - a ruler for your screen.  What size do I need to make that image?  Measure the space and find out fast.
  • Color Picker - with this tool, I can click on any color of a site and get the color code in several different formats.  Ideal for matching colors.
  • Screengrab! - works similarly to print screen, but I can put a box around the exact area of a screen image I want to copy. 
  • IE tab - Since we have to make our sites look good in Firefox and Internet Explorer, I need a way to quickly and easily view both.  With IE tab, a simple press of the icon changes the engine from Firefox to IE6, so I can see what needs to be changed to make the page look correct in both
Now I must say, IE7 is making great strides and appears to be a very useful and effective browser itself.  But if you are using Internet Explorer 6.0 or less, I must recommend that you upgrade your browser very soon.  Sites are starting to no longer support these older browsers.  And if you're looking for something new and fresh, I say give Firefox a shot.  It might just be all of you've been looking for.

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