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Thu, Dec 22, 2005

iCab 3.0 Beta 382 (Public Preview)

As predicted yesterday, a new public preview version of iCab 3.0 is available! Its main new features since the last public preview (beta 352, which was released in September) are

  • A built-in RSS reader
  • A new cache browser
  • Anchor highlighting
  • Support for Mac OS X's "Services" menu
  • Support for alternative style sheets

You'll find a detailed list of all changes and bug fixes in the readme files.

As the feature set seems quite complete, why is it still called a beta version? The readme mentions two issues:

  • Printing isn't fully working in the Classic version of iCab (because of bugs in printing Unicode text in "Classic" MacOS).
  • It is not optimized for speed yet.

IMHO both issues do not justify the beta status for much longer, at least not for the Mac OS X version. Other browsers have been declared "final" with a much less complete feature set... So, time for a final version early next year?

However, this decision is not up to me. Enjoy the new public preview of iCab! :-)

Posted by Thomas Much at 15:58
Categories: Browsers, iCab & InScript

Wed, Dec 21, 2005

iCab 3.0 Beta 381

Last Saturday iCab 3.0 beta 381 was released, and if no major bugs are found, one of the next releases will be the next public beta version! Three months after the last public beta version, this will make a great Christmas gift :-)

The current "closed" beta version contains mostly bug fixes, especially for web pages who rely on a strange feature of other browsers that execute DOM event capture handler not only on the event target's ancestors, but also on the event target itself. Needless to say, the current and future specification explicitely states that capturing is done only on the ancestor nodes. Sigh.

Posted by Thomas Much at 13:19
Categories: iCab & InScript

IE:mac gone for good

Microsoft announced that support for InternetExplorer:mac will end on 2005-12-31, and one month later the download link will disappear from their web site. This step was foreseeable as Microsoft canceled further development of IE:mac back in June 2003 after Apple released their Safari browser.

Actually, this is good news! The latest IE:mac version 5.2.3 is several years old and not up to date with current standards by far. Web designers who had to "tune" their pages with special hacks for the old and buggy IE:mac can now ignore this dead browser dinosaur and can rely on better alternatives.

And good alternatives for Mac OS X there are many: Safari, Firefox, Opera, OmniWeb and - of course - iCab (the latter being one of the very few browsers still developed not only for Mac OS X, but for Mac OS Classic, too).

Posted by Thomas Much at 13:00
Categories: Apple & Mac OS X, Browsers

Sun, Dec 11, 2005

iCab 3.0 Beta 379

Today is the 3rd Sunday of Advent, and when I opened the 11th door of my advent calendar, I found... a new iCab beta version! Again, Alexander included lots of new features and bug fixes:

  • iCab now supports type="text/ecmascript" in the SCRIPT tag, too.
  • If JavaScript code removes an HTML elemtent multiple times from the HTML tree in the same JavaScript call, iCab could be stuck in an endless loop.
  • If the kiosk mode was enabled in offline mode and the user tried to open a page which is only accessible in online mode and going online is allowed in Kiosk mode, iCab did ask to go online, but did never actually go into online mode.
  • If Tabs are switched off, Cmd-T (open a new Tab) is no longer available in Kiosk mode. But inderctly it is still possible to open new Tabs via JavaScript/HTML (as alternative to new windows, which can't be opened in Kiosk mode at all).
  • If a web page tried to open the same window via JavaScript multiple times in the same call, iCab could crash.
  • Opening a link which points to the page which is currently displayed, will now load the page again.
  • iCab now ignores all (nonsense) data that is appended to the HTTP status code. Before iCab reported a network error if too much nonsense data was appended to the HTTP status code.
  • The better scaling of tranparent GIF images will now be done only in graphic resolutions with 24/32Bit colordepth. Otherwise some dithering artefacts were visible.
  • A link to the root document of frame pages will now restore the framesets to their original state.
  • Marking the anchor links was not always done at the correct location.
  • Marking the anchors of links can now be switched off in the preferences (Web-Content > Display). The marking is now a transparent bar which fades out instead of a blinking arrow.
  • If iCab is now configured as default RSS reader of the system, RSS feeds can be now also opened in iCab by clicking the RS icon without any modifier keys.

Time for a new public beta version soon?

(Actually, as you might have guessed, this was rather coincidence. In my advent calendar I found a sweet marzipan heart :-)

Posted by Thomas Much at 18:10
Categories: iCab & InScript

Mon, Dec 05, 2005

iCab 3.0 Beta 375

iCab 3.0 beta 375 is another version for registered users only. It offers an interesting new iCab-only feature to highlight anchors for a short time whenever you jump to them with an anchor link (see below). And, after many (too many?) years, the iCab web site has been redesigned.

As always, Alexander's list of changes since beta 371:

  • If the user clicks anchor links (#xyz) which scroll the document to a certain location, iCab will show a flashing arrow at the left of the destination anchor so it can be found more easily.
  • The default setting for the web cache is now changed so that iCab will always ask the server if the web page has changed. Unfortunately some web sites (Shops) forget to tell the browser that certain web pages (like the shopping basket) must not be cached because they will change all the time, so iCab would have opened this page from the cache showing old or outdated information with the old default setting.
  • Network error message slightly redesigned.
  • When dragging a file direktly info the Hotlist window, a new item was created with an empty title. Now the default title is set to the file name.
  • Absolut positioned elements inside an icorrectly defined table were not processed correctly to calculate the document size.
  • The workaround for missing </A> tags from Beta 371 caused som new problems when <A> tags were nested incorrectly.
  • Opening web pages through the Services menu did not evaluate the preferences setting to open pages in a new tab/window.
  • Some plugins tend to crash when iCab passes the information about their location in the browser window before they get the information about the initial data that should be displayed by the plugin. So iCab passes the information to the plugin in another order now.
  • Small modification in InScripts processing of regular expressions, so that also the non-standard usage on some web pages will work in iCab.
  • When JavaScript tries to open multiple web pages in different frames of the same site within the same call via window.open, iCab did often update only one of the frames.
  • When the "charset" information in the Content-Type header of a web page was not valid, iCab displayed an empty page.
  • When the Web Cache was empty, the Cache browser could crash.
  • Under MacOSX the local URL "file://localhost/" did not show the correct folder content.
  • Scaling down transparent GIF images should look much better now.
  • Workaround implemented for SELECT elements which are not closed correctly.
  • When JavaScript code moves a form element from one form into another, iCab didn't update the "ownership" information of the element.
  • When a download was aborted because of a server timeout iCab could have stopped the download as if the download was fully finished. Now the downloaded file will keep its "unfnished" state so it's possible to resume the downlaod later.
  • The build-in RSS reader will now check if the embeded files are really audio files before adding audio links (for Podcasts). Some pages are using this mechanism also for other file types.
  • When searching for some text within a frame page, the found keywords were not always selected.
  • WebCams which are using the "server push" technology yould crash iCab.
  • New InScript version included where the join() function supports Unicode and where the x/y properties are also supported for IMG elements.
  • New checkbox "JavaScript 1.6" in the JavaScript settings included to enable/disable the execution of JavaScript 1.6.
  • In Kiosk mode it was possible to close the window.
Posted by Thomas Much at 13:59
Categories: iCab & InScript

InScript Release 184

InScript release 184 is a minor update only with two bug fixes and two new features. Features: XMLHttpRequest now has a overrideMimeType method, and HTMLImageElement knows its position on screen (properties x and y). Fixes: Array.prototype.join deals with Unicode characters correctly, and \nnn in regexp character classes is evaluated as an octal escape (and not as a back reference), i.e.

yields false now (in contrast to previous InScript releases), and

yields true.

Both is explicitely forbidden according to the ECMAScript standard (a SyntaxError should be thrown instead), but InScript's behavious now matches Safari and Firefox (and not Perl, though back references in character classes are really cool!).

Posted by Thomas Much at 13:35
Categories: iCab & InScript