Jun-11-07, 12:57 pm by Hanford
File under: Misc., Bad User Interface, web2.0, design, User Interface, Apple
... what PC developers have been doing to them for years.
Safari for Windows is out. And so far, I'm not liking it. I am a PC user, but I own a Mac machine as well and I've used Safari on it a fair amount.
So what am I hating about it? First and foremost, Apple broke the golden rule that every PC software developer that ported to the Mac was shamed for doing: Apple has forced their OS's s look/feel and UI conventions onto another OS. Take this screen shot of the Safari for Windows Preferences panel:
It looks just like the Mac. The buttons, the colors, the behavior of the controls. The way you can tell it's a Windows dialog is Apple managed to get the close button in the proper place. But everything else is pure Mac. I remember when I was heavily into the Mac vs.
Safari for Windows is a step beyond what iTunes for Windows has done. Even though iTunes carried over a few of the Mac UI conventions, the majority of dialogs, popups, and controls in iTunes for Windows used standard Windows conventions and rendering styles. It looks like Safari for Windows throws that out entirely.
Enough with the blurry fontsThe first thing I did when I fired up Safari was I went to turn off text anti-aliasing in browser. This had already got my glasses steamed because Windows has a global setting for text anti-aliasing. Why does the app have to have it's own setting? Why can't Safari default to what the user has already chosen? I'll tell you why it can't: because Safari for Windows apparently doesn't have an option to turn text anti-aliasing off. Check out the screen shot of the "text smoothing" option from Safari for Windows:
Just three shades of yuck; it's missing "none". The end result is that every web page I view with Safari is just unreadable to me. For what it's worth, Internet Explorer 7 does the same thing by default, but at least it has an option to turn it completely off.
Even more weirdnessEven though Safari for Windows is a total eyesore, I decided to write this blog post in it to give it a true kick in the tires. But I quickly switched back to Firefox. Why? Because In Safari for Windows the Wordpress "quicktags" bar was missing. This was probably Wordpress's fault, but that really doesn't matter to me -- it's going to stop me from using Safari.
I spent a few seconds hovering over the top of edge of the window to try to resize it before realizing the Safari window can only be resized in the lower-right corner. And Safari for Windows is missing tooltips on their unfathomable toolbar icons. What the hell is the spider button? Do I have to click it to figure out what it is?
Rant overAm I happy Apple released Safari for Windows? Yes. It means I no longer have to fire up my Mac when I want to test web page design on Safari. But it doesn't look like I'll be using it; for all the same reasons that Mac users rejected shoddy Windows ports for all these many years.
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