Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Safari 1.3- Some stuff is broken, some better, some much better

Safari 1.3 is a new Safari. Very new. It has broken a lot of my scripts, or at least the content of the scripts as it seems that the new engine is not a slight difference from the old engine.

First the good stuff.

Speed. Huge improvement. I've not run benchmarks, but perception is that it is faster. On "old" problem sites like "http://www.chron.com" it no longer chokes. Safari 1.3 vs. Camino 0.8.3 (and nightly builds), Safar is not as fast - again, perception-wise.

Safari does seem to respond more quickly to AppleScripts that move windows, open new windows, etc. There used to be a delay sometimes and, as odd as it may sound, moving my mouse would make the script finish. Serious weirdness.

Selecting Text. I've got to say that this is a mixed bag of good and bad. Its good in that it seems that sites where I had problems selecting text (headlines, secondary headlines, etc) no longer have that weird you can select these words, but if you want that last one and the period, you need to select the rest of the next paragraph garbage.

What I consider bad is that selecting text no longer grabs the text - using via AppleScript the getSelection() command - with the Unixy \n for linebreaks. Rather, it uses \r, at least as far as I can tell. My scripts were written around fixing the Unix line breaks and other code. Applying my Camino scripts - which is virtually identical but set to fix the standard \r stuff as I have to copy text rather than "getSelection()" since that's still not working in Cam - Safari balks, leaves everything "as is", no fixes, no colons where I scrape out miscellaneous text. [Ed., CORRECTION: the "set clipText to (do JavaScript "getSelection()" in document 1) as string" is actually broken. At least as far as I can tell. I erred in that my script, if it couldn't getSelection automatically copied the text, but when I removed that option, I realized it was quite broken]

Other text selection wierdness: when double-clicking to highlight a section, what gets selected includes a huge empty space. Odd, but not totally out of the ordinary. Selecting text via mouse click and drag usually grabs properly, but might grab something extra, non-visible at the beginning or end.

Camino has its own quirks as does Firefox, but speedwise, Camino still wins. Safari seems to still have problems with some ads, could be the flash/java or just the ad host. I'm quite pleased that Safari has made a considerable jump in speed and compatibility, but I've lost hope that v.2.0 will be that much better since the guts are pretty much the same according to Dave Hyatt.

My copy of Tiger is on order, so by the first week of May I hope to have some decent tidbits to write about. Keeping my fingers crossed that no more of my AppleScripts will break and have to be reworked. In the mean time, may the wind be at the backs of the Camino team!