Thursday, October 5th, 2006

Safari 3.0: New Tricks

Category: Browsers, WebKit

The Mars report has Leopard Lust, and in their latest article they walk us through three features in Safari 3.0 that get them drooling:

  • Tabs on Steroids: “Besides catching up with most other browser makers in letting users reorder their tabs through drag-and-drop, Apple is adding the ability to drag tabs off your browser and make new windows with them. Or you can drag tabbed windows from one window to another. You can also ask Safari to consolidate all open windows into one, making tabs for each. In all, these new tricks promise to make power-surfing even easier! (Note: Safari users have had several plugins available to enable rearrangeable tabs for quite some time… just not the real thing!)”
  • Lightbox Searching: They have taken the good Firefox live searching and improved it with a lightbox to show you exactly where your terms are. It’s all about contrast.
  • TextAreas Come Alive: “As I note in the short video on this feature, this new capability of Safari 3.0 fulfills a dream that web designers have had since web applications were babies. How many times we’ve had to size and re-size TEXTAREA boxes to satisfy user requirements, while also maintaining some semblence of good page design? And how many times have we rearranged whole applications in order to avoid TEXTAREA input fields that were too many, too big, or too small?

    So, what if you didn’t have to worry about that anymore? After all, is there a perfect-size-fits-all for a TEXTAREA field? Nah, definitely not. It depends on how much you have to say, and on how territorial you are.

    Safari 3.0 in Leopard, at least in the preview release I’m working with, enables a “resize” corner that lets the user drag the damn text field to be as big as you want it. Could it be more perfect? Probably, but at the moment it doesn’t seem obvious to me how that would be possible.”

Posted by Dion Almaer at 8:24 am

3.9 rating from 24 votes


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This is good looking but does not work in firefox.
It seems it uses the global event that exists only in IE.

Comment by rodrigo — October 5, 2006

The comment was about the other news ..about visualistic.

Comment by rodrigo — October 5, 2006

I’d like to point out that the ability to drag tabs out of the main application window is a feature that Opera has had for a few years. In addition, Opera lets you organize the tabs and windows through a window panel, where you can drag (multiple) tabs between open windows (Even preserving form content and similar when you move them).

Comment by Arve — October 5, 2006

Whilst this is cool, as a person looking at what else safari 3.0 has, i’m annoyed there is little security enhancements.

I just worry that Apple are pushing the UI factor harder than the security of the browsing experience

Comment by Daniel — October 5, 2006

Resizable textareas is a real saver. I have the extension for Firefox, and I don’t think I could live without it now.

Comment by Mike Ritchie — October 5, 2006

re: security over interface development (or vice versa)

The huge majority of the users care about browsing experience. A browser should focus on browser experience. That is what should be advertised and promoted.

“Oh, and incidentally, look at this list of security fixes.”

The only organization that needs to have security fixes as a promoted advantage are those that have security deficits advertised everywhere.

Comment by Caleb Buxton — October 5, 2006

That’s nice, but not using a Mac as my main machine (and even if I did I’d use Firefox), these are not the enhancements I’m expecting.

As a web developer, I *need* Apple to fix those:

* have an event fired when a script has finished loading (as specified by the standard)
* Safari needs a debugger. The JavaScript console is not enough (and anyway, it needs to better handle multiuline error messages)
* Regular expression bugs
* XML parsing (no more mapping IMAGE to IMG, no systematic capitalization of tag names)

Comment by Bertrand Le Roy — October 5, 2006

Bertrand, never assume you know what you think you know. As a web developer, I’ve never missed the first problem you mention, but I can tell you for sure that the second problem has been solved… at least, if you debug to the nightly WebKit build, which is a pretty good proxy for Safari 2.0. The nightly build now downloads with a javascript debugger called Drosera, and it includes an excellent CSS/DOM debugger (better in some ways than Firebug) called WebInspector. WebInspector is included in Safari 3.0.

Every browser has bugs… if you’re concerned about Safari bugs—and I’m glad you are!—it would help to stay informed by reading the WebKit wiki and blog, starting from There are tons of useful extensions and enhancements going on, including fixes one of the longstanding complaints which you didn’t mention, the dreaded ContentEditable functions.

By the way, I’m writing this in Firefox 1.5 on the Mac, and I’m delighted to confirm that a recent extension does enable resizable textarea boxes in Firefox! Doesn’t work quite right yet in 2.0, but it will soon I’m sure. See this site to download it.

Comment by Leland Scott — October 5, 2006

I figured Leland would be along to call people stupid. you are such a great Ambassador for Apple…

Comment by Hubris Sonic — October 6, 2006

3.0 sounds nice BUT, does 3.0 support WYSIWYG editors out there like TinyMCE and others? This has been driving me nuts. There are a couple but they deviate from standard JS and DHTML to accomplish this functionality (e.g java, etc).

Any ideas?

Comment by Eric Caldwell — October 6, 2006

Leland: great news about the debugger. I can’t use nightly builds but I’m sure glad this will be solved. I’ll file bugs for the other problems. The dynamic script loading event is ultra-important for dynamic script loading scenarios. I’ve tried to file Safari bugs before but was unable to find the right place (the only site I found was a “Darwin” site that’s closed). Thanks.

Comment by Bertrand Le Roy — October 6, 2006

All right, so the dynamic script loading thing is FIXED. Woohoo! FYI, bug 5812. Thanks Guys.
I did not find the XML bugs yet so I’ll file them.

Comment by Bertrand Le Roy — October 6, 2006

[…] Ajaxian SafariThursday, October 5th, 2006. Safari 3.0: New Tricks. Category: Browsers , Safari. The Mars report has Leopard Lust , and in their latest article they walk us through three features in Safari 3.0 that […]

Pingback by » Blog Archive » Lion Country Safari, Inc. - Florida — October 12, 2006

Does the Webkit nightly build also include support for calling XSL from javascript?

John Perkins
Salem, NH

Comment by John Perkins — March 23, 2007

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