Browzar on the back foot

At last, BBC News have removed that effusive story about the highly dodgy Browzar software. I almost complained to the BBC about it yesterday, but luckily I didn’t need to. Today they’ve replaced it with a new, much more probing story.

It’s clear that Browzar is on the back foot now. I particularly like this bit:

Mr Ahmed said at the time of its release: “Although it’s possible to delete history folders and empty cache with existing internet browsers, the majority of internet users worldwide don’t have the time or expertise to do this.

It could hardly be simpler to delete history folders and empty your cache. In Firefox it a simple matter of going to Tools → Clear Private Data. And that’s it! As I recall, it is similarly easy to delete your history and cache even in Internet Explorer.

Yet Ajaz Ahmed thinks that people will find it easier to go out, download and install his scam IE shell? In a world where so many people still think that the only way to browse the web is through Internet Explorer? A friend recently said to me that he didn’t understand why he could need Firefox because “with Internet Explorer you just type in the address and that’s it.”

Every opportunity should be taken to warn people away from Internet Explorer, so I’ll do it right now.

Get Firefox!

Or at least Browse Happy.


  1. People = stupid.

    As to your friend? I used to drive a Skoda. All I had to do was put the key in the ignition. If that was the only car I’d ever driven, I wouldn’t have known that driving could actually be enjoyable.

    Learning the tricks of the new car took a few tries, but you don’t go back.

    Why is it driving analogies are the best way to explain the ‘net?

  2. Hah! Funny that. I sometimes feel like saying to people, “Learning how to use [a computer / the internet] is like learning to drive a car.”

    As for browsers / Skodas, I can kind of see it from that point of view. You wouldn’t want Firefox to become bloatware. If you don’t know about the security problems or web design hell caused by IE, you would wonder exactly what more you could want from a browser. Although part of the beauty of Firefox is all the extensions you can install.

  3. Have you tried IE7, out of curiosity? IE’s main problem is simply that it is really, really old. IE7 is a great improvement, although their approach to web standards (“Man, fuck web standards” — Microsoft insider*) is still pretty poor.

    Most users won’t make the most of Firefox. Fact. IE7 is bringing in most, if not all, of the features that most users will actually use. For the record, though, I’m a Flock user, which is basically Firefox. I really do despise using IE.

    * Not a quote.

  4. I did download some beta version of IE7. It seemed okay, but this computer is a bit broken (IE6 didn’t work on here either) so I couldn’t tell much about it. I’ve tried it more on my brother’s computer, but I’m way too used to Firefox now. Using IE or even Opera just feels weird.

  5. Isn’t IE7 going to be a forced Windows update, or at least for those people who allow MS to update everything automatically so they don’t have to think?

    Most people will be content to just use IE. It’s there by default and it does what it needs to. So your friend has no need to use FF if he’s happy. He’s probably the same sort of person who is oblivious to spyware and browser hacks and doesn’t care until he finds he’s redirected to some porn site whenever they use Google. I use Firefox, the tabs alone are worth it, but it still has a few things I don’t like about it. Pretentious IT types love it and go on about it like it’s the software version of the second coming of the messiah,which does count against it though.

  6. Yup. Well IE7 will have tabs aswell which will take away one of the major advantages of Firefox. Then again, if IE users like tabs and hear that every single other browser in the world has had tabs for years it might make them think about switching. But IE does the job for most users anyway.