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WinMag.com: Netscape 6 Is A Revolution

Apr 18, 2000, 19:46 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Scot Finnie)

"Here comes Netscape, Phoenix-like, rising out of the supposed ashes of what the press once gleefully termed the browser wars. When IE 5.0 drove the point home, Netscape didn't just roll over, though it might have seemed that way. The company took a pass on Netscape Communicator 5.0 -- the version that would have been a major upgrade, but would have been based on the large, monolithic, over-bloated code base that had evolved as far as it could in Netscape 4.x. And it took an incredible chance that going the open-source route with Mozilla.org would deliver the goods it needed to not only hold onto its markedly smaller marketshare, but eventually recapture the flag...."

"The biggest news about Netscape 6 isn't the raft of new features, which include user interface skins, My Sidebar, a new customizable search facility, integrated AOL instant messaging, the ability to send and receive AOL Mail from Netscape Mail, and an automatic Web page language-translation facility supplied by Alis Technologies. The real boon of Netscape 6 is smaller download size, a truly customizable installation, faster page loading, and deep Internet standards support."

"That last point translates into something that's become increasingly important both for you and me, and for Netscape the company: Page fidelity. For the longest time Netscape preached support of Internet standards, but when it came to Navigator 4.x, that just wasn't the case. What's more, Microsoft nimbly took the lead in some standards areas, and was very quick about implementing standards support. Netscape 6 strikes back...."

"Going along with Netscape 6's XML support is the new XUL (XML-based User-interface Language, pronounced "zool") XML application that is one of the niftiest behind-the-scenes aspects of Netscape 6. XUL (which sounds like some sort of D&D god) makes possible both the Netscape 6's skins (or user interface themes) feature as well as making it easy for developers to create cross-platform versions of Netscape 6."

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