Re: [dev] Talk about sane web browsers

From: Anselm R Garbe <>
Date: Tue, 8 Sep 2009 09:07:55 +0100

2009/9/8 Uriel <>:
> On Mon, Sep 7, 2009 at 9:35 PM, markus schnalke<> wrote:
>> The point is: It is simply not possible to have sane web browsers. But
>> you both come to bad results IMO.
>> Uriel says: Okay, so we'll not have a sane web browsers, thus we use
>> one of the bad ones or better don't use the web at all.
> No, I'm saying that I wish people would write or help write a browser
> that sucks less. My point is that adding a coat of paint on top of an
> existing browser (>90% of the browser is the rendering/js/etc. engine)
> is not the same as writing that sucks less at all, it is a lazy and
> meaningless gesture of little practical value and that contributes
> little to the sorry state of things.

I think it is clear that the existing web stack can't be implemented
in a less sucking way. That's why it's quite clever and pragmatic to
let the WebKit folks do the ugly work. We wouldn't have the resource
to do it anyways.

We'd have the resource to think about a web stack replacement that can
be implemented in less sucking ways and that's designed with
simplicity and clarity in mind. However it is uncertain if such a
replacement won't be a dead-end project unfortunately, because it has
to provide additional use if it wants to compete or replace the
existing web stack. But I'm very open to discuss the new technology of
the future.

I think we all agree that it is pointless to waste our time with
implementing the existing web stack.

> Well, first, the 'black box' is >90% of what the user, and code has to
> interface with, so the box is not black at all, it is quite
> translucent and with plenty of holes and leaks, and it is filled with
> liquid feces.
> Note that the Chrome people, while far from perfect, have built a much
> more sensible 'black box' around a rendering engine which actually
> does have serious benefits for security and performance, it still
> sucks, but the approach is way more useful than the 'I will just write
> another GTK UI and change a few keybindings'.

First of all I wouldn't consider WebKit or Chrome a black box (the
latter for the same reason you give above).

Second, I see nothing wrong with experimenting with browser chromes
like what uzbl or surf do. Actually I welcome these projects much more
than the next incarnation of Mozilla's new Firefox UI.

I agree that using chrome as a foundation for a desktop browser would
make much more sense, because you could really concentrate on the
purpose you are after, which is getting the browser UI right (which
Chrome doesn't).

BUT using Chrome as a base looks like much more effort to me, not to
mention its baroque build system.

Kind regards,
Received on Tue Sep 08 2009 - 08:07:55 UTC

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