Following Safari

Album Cover: Life in 1472

"Even with a patch on my eye, I'm dreamy."
Slick Rick / Fresh

Posted on February 10, 2004 12:55 PM in Browsers
Warning: This blog entry was written two or more years ago. Therefore, it may contain broken links, out-dated or misleading content, or information that is just plain wrong. Please read on with caution.

I think it's pretty funny how meticulously I follow the development of Apple's Safari web browser when, truth be told, I've never even used it. In fact, the only Mac I own once belonged to my girlfriend, and now rests peacefully somewhere in a moist cardboard box deep in our basement.

I don't know what it is, but the whole process of web browser development fascinates me. Following the development of Internet Explorer or Firefox makes a little more sense, I suppose, since I am a Windows (and sometimes Linux) user, but nevertheless I think I follow the development a little closer than I should. I just can't help it.

My senior year of college, I was faced with the dilemma of deciding on a senior capstone project for my Computer Science major. My first and only independent thought was to create a web browser from scratch. To be honest, when two of my good buddies approached me with the idea of creating a sheet music library management system, I was a little more than unimpressed. However, as it turns out I am extremely grateful for their recommendation, as it led to a full-fledged web-based application and the founding of a company.

Mike Ash and I still toy with the idea of creating the ultimate web browser to this day, but with every single release of browsers like Safari and Firefox, it seems like more and more a pipe dream.

However, I am in awe of the developers like David Hyatt and Ben Goodger who play such an instrumental role in the creation and evolution of such amazing products. David Hyatt, for instance, elicits feedback from the many Apple faithful that visit his site, asking for the features and fixes that seem most desirable. A quick read through any of the heavily populated comment sections at his site will reveal the extreme level of inappreciation he puts up with, and often tries to appease.

So, in the end, my hat goes off to guys like Dave who are doing their part (and a huge part at that) to bring web browsers (and in turn, web development and design) to a new level. I realize that as my browser reveries steadily evolve toward pipe dream status, the less important those reveries actually are, afterall.

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