When I first saw the top sites feature that Safari took to the extreme (look wise) I jumped up and down shouting about how I wouldn’t want this feature at all. I am the king of
Why would I want to waste time for this new tab page to come up when I normally want to just go somewhere (often the “where” is in my clipboard).
Well, after a week of using Safari 4 I realised that I hadn’t switched it off, and it hadn’t bothered me even though I knew it would bother me!
The reason is of course due to the speed. The reason I always hated setting my “home page” to anything but about:blank was because of the time it would take to grab and render the page. I have never been a “put iGoogle there!” kinda guy. Too slow, and not in my flow at all.
I don’t find that I often USE the top sites to get somewhere because the way I get to common sites is that I put them into tabs and I use APPLE-# (where # is a number of the tab) to get there. Thus, the whole notion of top sites doesn’t make much sense for me. The history area has been used once or twice and coverflow is waaaay too much here.
Now, Aza and company have been doing fun work with what this would look like in Firefox. It is a lot more subtle, especially the latest visual update. I love the subtle things such as knowing that I often go to my clipboard to having an action right there.
I also have really enjoyed how this has all been done as a plugin itself, and the process has happened very much in the open. Imagine if you could talk to the Apple engineers and help them do the best job they could for Safari? You can’t. With us, you can.
Also, this being Firefox, you can tweak the hell out of this puppy by greasemonkeying the page, setting the page to your own beast, or writing your own plugin to do something really fancy (like being able to tie into the same places database to do cool things).
You may think that you will hate these new pages, but as long as they load up just as fast as an empty page (perceived to be) you may find that, like me, you don’t actually care at all.