AOL announced today that on February 1, 2008, it will stop providing support for any version of Netscape.
It could have meant something thirteen years ago, when it was my browser of choice, a nice competitor for Mosaic and a web technology driver. Or even ten years ago while IE was bullying it out of the game while it was struggling to develop Constellation, a so called and still vaporware “web OS”.
But for the past eight years or so it has been nothing but AOL’s living dead browser. A very sad ending for such an important piece of software responsible for introducing millions of users to this new media called the web and its father, the Internet.
So I am really happy to learn this. Let’s hope AOL drops the Netscape brand once and for all and let it die as well.
AOL recommends Netscape users, like 0.04% of Mozilla Links’ readers, to move to Firefox. Good advice.
If there’s some Netscape feature you may miss, you will be glad to know there is an equivalent extension/theme for Firefox:
- URL correction for common addresses mistypes. (URL Fixer review)
- Link Pad, a sidebar where you can drop links and keep them apart from your bookmarks. Somewhat similar to what starring will do for Firefox 3.
- Sidebar Minibrowser, which in practice, allows to browser two sites at the same time side by side. (Split Browser)
- OPML support for importing and exporting web feeds. (OPML Support review)
- Textareas are resizable. (Resizable Textarea review)
- New tabs inherit the history of the current tab.
- A combined stop/reload button as part of a visual refresh to the default theme. (Netstripe for Firefox)