Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Revisiting the "Firefox Myths" Part 6

Please read my earlier post "Revisiting the "Firefox Myths" Part 2, the Tangent" for background information on where these quotes came from and what the heck is going on.
Myth - "Firefox is the Fastest Web Browser"

Firefox Myths is 2 years old! You then make ridiculous comments about my "beloved" browser which makes you loose even more credibility when I state no such thing. Regardless this Myth is clearly debunked, Opera is fastest. You however point out irrelevant things to a page about Firefox Myths. This is not IE Myths.
The inclusion of some data on IE 7 makes it clear that Andrew K has been updating "Firefox Myths." With this in mind, I fail to see the relevance of his mention of how old the original version of the article is. IS he trying to beg our pardon for shoddy editing?

My crack about IE 6 being a "beloved" browser is based on Andrew's insistence upon using it as a baseline when comparing Firefox and IE system requirements and his vigorous defense of that decision. He refused to use IE 7 for comparisons when it will show Firefox in a good light.

Of course all that is beside the point. The bottom line is, I agreed that Firefox is NOT the fastest web browser, and Adnrew K still felt compelled to argue with me about it. More and more, I'm convinced that Andrew K is a troll trying to drive traffic to his web site.
Myth - "Firefox is Faster than Internet Explorer 7"

Hello the page is not about IE!! This myth is clearly debunked.
A quick note to Andrew:

The Myth is about Firefox and IE and the comparisons being made between them. This means IE is relevant.

Let's take a look at the criteria used for the speed tests:

Browser name

Cold start

Warm start

Rendering CSS

Rendering table

Script speed

Multiple images


Firefox 2.0








Internet Explorer 7.0 (b3)








Opera 9.01








OK, we all know Firefox takes a while to start up. Two of those 7 metrics are only relevant when launching the application. I only launch my web browser once or twice a day at the most. For actual day to day web browsing I'm going to care more about the other statistics.

For rendering a table, IE has a 0.15 second edge on Firefox. The History test involved loading 10 pages from cache, and IE will do that 9 seconds faster than Firefox. On the flip side, Firefox was able to execute the test script 14 seconds FASTER than IE.

According to the stats above, for the actual task of web browsing IE is slower than Firefox. If you're viewing a web site that's graphics heavy, or that uses the Javascript and CSS heavy AJAX framework, Internet Explorer is noticeably slower.

Of course this is all just one set of tests from one site. More to the point, all these statistics came from an Opera employee.
Myth - "Firefox is Faster than Mozilla"

This is all your opinion not substantiated by any data and irrelevant to the page. This Myth is debunked.
Actually I gave quite a bit of data, demonstrating that outside of Firefox's launch time, Opera's speed and IE 7's abysmal Scripting score, most of the performance measures differed by less than half a second. Can YOU tell the difference between a web site taking 5 seconds to load and 5.5 seconds?
Myth - "Firefox Gained 25% Market Share in May 2007"
Myth - "Firefox Achieved 20% Market Share in January 2006 in Europe"
Myth - "Firefox Achieved 10% Market Share in 2005"

These Myths are important to highlight the obvious bias Firefox was getting to promote an untrue market share.
Funny, but there are sources that claim the Firefox headlines are accurate. Let's look at the 10% in 2005 figure.
  • Onestat: 11.51% by November 2005.
  • ADTECH: 12.41% by September 2005.
  • XiTi: 13.08% by October 2005.
Web Browser statistics are a bit of a black art. No one ever has a sample set representing 100% of the Web, they'll always be looking at a subset of the population, specifically, the people visiting web sites that in turn purchased the products of the company providing the statistics.
W3CSchools is a horrible example that site simply records visitor statistics and is severly biased.

The Browsernews is even more biased looking at the sources as it trys to compare single domain page hits with companies who monitor web traffic across hundreds of thousands of pages. Ridiculous. If you don't understand the difference I cannot help you, regardless these myths are debunked.
I wonder how Andrew would try to gather browser statistics. Looking at this reply, it really does sound like he's making a stab at parody. According to his description, Browsernews is trying to generate browser statistics by aggregating data from "Thousands of sources."

Isn't one of the ways to improve a survey's reliability to enlarge the sample size?

What makes the statistics Andrew uses "better" than the other sites? How would he describe the difference between them?
Myth - "Firefox Achieved 150 million downloads in January of 2006"

This was widely spammed at the time which is why it was listed.
Funny, but the only headlines I saw about it were about the miscount and what was being done to keep it from happening again.
Myth - "Firefox is Secure"

Secure as in not vulnerable to anything. This is not a comparison! Security comparisons to be non-biased must be done between a set timeframe since it is obvious a browser that was out for 3-5 more years would have more vulnerabilities. Regardless Firefox is NOT secure and the Myth is debunked.
Pardon me, I got a good belly laugh out of the line "Secure as in not vulnerable to anything." Show me one Web browser that's "Secure as in not vulnerable to anything." Go on Andrew, show me ONE. In my original article I point out that many of the "Vulnerabilities" in Andrew's listing are actually fixed, and never resulted in an exploit in the wild. The method Andrew uses to get his bug counts is inaccurate.

I could debate the nuances of what different people think of when they see the word "Secure" but that would be a waste of time, as it would be entirely too subjective. Instead I'll propose a compromise: I'll gladly concede Firefox isn't "Secure" if Andrew K will concede that by the definition he uses of "Secure" there's no "Secure" version of Internet Explorer or Opera, and add a statement to that effect to the "myth" on his web site.


Anonymous said...

You thinking seems to be out of whack. The Myth is that Firefox has lower system requirements then IE. Neither Firefox 1.x nor Firefox 2.x have lower requirements than IE6 period. Stating excuses about IE7 does not change this fact. Obviously the page has been updated for IE7 and Firefox 2.x which is irrelevant to the requirement Myth. The mention of the age of the article is to put into perspective when it came out. Now even with that being said IE6 still has the most market share of any browser.

Your "crack" at calling it beloved is a flat out lie. These sort of ridiculous comments give you zero credibility. IE7 is irrelevant to the Myth. The Myth does not state IE7 has higher requirements, it states Internet Explorer period.

Matthew, I have had enough of your bullshit accusations of me being a troll. The whyfirefoxmyths site is not mine. CAN YOU COMPREHEND THIS?

Myth - "Firefox is Faster than Internet Explorer 7"

"The Myth is about Firefox and IE and the comparisons being made between them. This means IE is relevant."

No it is irrelevant to discuss this:

"Of course, IE 6 out performs IE 7 in 6 out of 7 of those same metrics. Why isn't he crowing about that?"

Which has nothing to do with the myth. Thus comparing IE is irrelevant to the Myth.

"According to the stats above, for the actual task of web browsing IE is slower than Firefox."

You cannot make that statement since visiting only pages that rely on tables would be faster in IE. The myth is not about specific speed tests but them as a whole.

That "Opera employee" was not one when he made the page and it is irrelevant to the data which is fully documented and reproducible.

What someone can tell is subjective to the person which is why it is an opinion and irrelevant to the discussion.



The Counter:

All clearly show Firefox did not reach 10% in 2005. Onestat, Xiti and Adtech are all European based firms FYI

What I stated about Browsernews is that it is comparing statistics from single domain names (W3Schools) with those firms that use tens to hundreds of thousands of sites (NetApplications).

Enlarging the sample size is my point! You cannot compare single domain name statistics with companies that use tens to hundreds of thousands of sites to gather their statistics!

The reason you did not see any other headlines is every blog and forum post I saw was pulled that included the original, I only screen captured one. But what you find is irrelevant to what was actually there or what you did not find. The examples are not the sources and again the page came out in 2005 thus many pages disappear in a two year time frame or drop out of relevance in search engines.

What you find funny about the definition of secure used is irrelevant to how people actually used it. This is a Myths page and I am sorry to say but this is one of the most widely touted though obviously inaccurate Myths about Firefox. Yes people thought they were invulnerable using it. I concede nothing because I made no such implications. You are too hung up on comparing browsers and stating things irrelevant to the myth as in excuses, excuses will never be added. This is stated clear at the bottom.

Matthew Miller said...

If you're going to use IE 6 as the system requirements comparison, then put the version number in the title of the Myth. If the Myth is about "Internet Explorer Period" then why do you completely ignore Internet Explorer 7? Just because it has a lower market share? It's the fastest growing browser in history and all New PCs ship with IE 7.

If the myth is about "Internet Explorer Period" then it's dishonest to ignore the new version. If the myth is about IE 6 then give the version number when discussing it, if it's about IE in general, then discuss both IE 6 and IE 7. IE 7 is only behind IE 6 by 10% to 20% of the total market and it's the fastest growing browser in History. Why do you ignore it in a discussion that you claim is about "Internet Explorer Period"?

You mention the version numbers in the speed comparisons, why then, do you not mention the version numbers when discussing system requirements?

Regardless of your intentions, it makes you look like you're trying to hide something. Simply adding the IE version number to the content of the myth would eliminate the argument.

You'd still be able to claim the myth "busted" if you included IE 7, because IE 7 and Firefox 2.x have the SAME minimum system requirements, with the exception that Firefox runs on more versions of Windows than IE 7.

That's the kicker, you're creating the appearance of dishonesty when you don't even need to.

I have no idea what you're talking about when you mention a "whyfirefoxmyths site." Are you yourself becoming confused about who wrote what? I made it very clear that I know you didn't write the "Why Firefox is Blocked" site and I bring it up in the "Firefox Religion" context as a counterpoint, to show that there's noting unique or "Fanboyish" about wanting to block or redirect IE users. For example, if a developer has two different sites optimized for different browsers, then code to automatically redirect these users is essential.

I confess, I only mentioned the fact that the stats were created by an Opera employee because I knew it would wind you up. I don't think it casts any doubt on the stats.

To be honest, the rest of your tirades are hardly worthy of a response. In your earlier comment you claimed Browsernews used thousands of pages for their samples and now you're claiming it only uses one. Which is it? You need to show some consistency to be believed.

I find it very telling that you refuse to admit that the definition you use for "secure" defines Internet Explorer and Opera as insecure. Debunking myths about a product doesn't mean you bash it, and if you fail to even passingly mention counter points it weakens your entire site.

Anonymous said...

By your logic it is dishonest to Ignore IE3 and IE4. The Requirement Myth is accurate and is not changing.

Each Myth is based on how it was heard. With requirements the version number was not mentioned specifically for IE while with performance they are.

I don't care how it looks to those who cannot understand simple logic.

The browser news comment you are taking completely out of context. I stated:

"The Browsernews is even more biased looking at the sources as it trys to compare single domain page hits with companies who monitor web traffic across hundreds of thousands of pages."

I never said Browsernews uses thousands of pages for it's samples I said it is comparing sources that use thousands of samples to ones with a single domain.

I never stated the definition I used does not define IE or Opera as insecure you keep implying this. I make no such statements or implications. You keep stating it to make an excuse for Firefox being insecure.

I am bashing nothing, just because the majority of the Firefox Myths are overexaggerated positives does not mean that I am bashing Firefox.

Counterpoints are Excuses and excuses will never be added to the page.

Anonymous said...

"I am bashing nothing, just because the majority of the Firefox Myths are overexaggerated positives does not mean that I am bashing Firefox."

Firefox Myths is certainly a tool for bashing Firefox, which Andrew K (aka Mastertech) applies whenever opportunity arises:

"A completely insecure product, even IE is more secure!"

"Get the facts. All the feature people need are now in IE7."

"FF 2.0 is still not standards compliant and is insecure."

"Wow, this just adds on to the over 100 vulnerabilities of this already insecure browser. Too bad this browser is too slow and not fully standards compliant."

"Is IE faster than Firefox? Is IE more secure than Firefox? Is Firefox not standards compliant? Does Firefox have unpatched vulnerabilities from 2004? Do over 90 Firefox extensions collect data and uniquely identifying users without notifying them?"

A one-man anti-Firefox campaign: bashing Firefox is Andrew's passion.


All with links to Andrew's pages, either Comcast or Popular Technology. Not bashing anything? Well, some of the other reviewers at BetaNews certainly seem to feel he's bashing them over the head with his pages!

Anonymous said...

The only person who seems to be on a campaign is you Frank. You obsessive compulsive behavior towards the Firefox Myths page is not good for your health. Your constant lies to protect your infalliable Firefox is the perfect example of a Fanboy.

I could careless if people use Firefox just don't use lies to try to convince people to use it. Fanboys like Frank will never change.

Anonymous said...

Andy, If Frank is obsessive for "following" you around, what are YOU when you're still here arguing at people when you've already posted claiming you were "done" with the site?

You've been caught out child, and you're STILL wasting folks time.

Oh, I get it, you're posting a link to your little tirade site with every mention of your name. You're being shown a liar and a fraud at every turn but you're getting your precious little link it every time you post another pool of drivel.

It's all about the ad impressions, isn't it Andy? That's all this is about, and you don't mind making an ass of yourself to get that money.

You don't care what people say about you as long as they link to your site. You're a clever little troll, you're making money at it.

Anonymous said...

I have to respond to the liars. Repetition of lies about me does not make them true. This blog is full of them and they must be corrected.

A pot head stating lies is hardly proof of anything. Anything can be created with photoshop FYI. The fanboys will stop at nothing to hide the truth from those that they are trying to convert.

Of course I have ads and make money off them on my site, I am not socialist or a communist. The New York Times makes money off their site. That has nothing to do with why I wrote the page or why they write theirs. All my guides are free and for them to be free then I need to make them ad supported. That is the reality of not being a socialist of communist.

I am not a troll, this is stated clearly on my page.

Anonymous said...


So you still can't tell the difference between California and the UK?

Tell me little boy, did you just sleep through your Geography classes? Why haven't you responded to any of the posts pointing out one of those Franks is in the UK and the other is in California?

You're the one whose a liar.

Anonymous said...

"I am not a troll, this is stated clearly on my page."

The fact that it is stated on your page does not make it true; it only means you believe it's true.

There are plenty who wouldn't agree:

"Andrew K. of XP Myths is a fraud and a Internet Troll."

"The guy (Andrew K) (I know him as Mastertech from mozilla) that made "Firefox Myths" is highly disliked all over the net, from Mozilla to slashdot. He uses many different identities, from my understanding, because he's the biggest firefox troll around."

"I am beginning to realize you are either a complete idiot or a troll."

"We all know Mr. Tech is just a great big Spam Troll, as does almost everyone else on the entire planet. We've been duped into giving him exactly what he wanted and now playtime is over. Don't feed the Troll."

"master tech is a troll only posting to get a rise out of people."

etc. etc. ad infinitum.

Anonymous said...

You fools do not even know how people can lie about their location and use proxies for their IPs. It is really sad fanboys are this dumb too bad Frank was not smart enough to use a different name. Pot Heads are delusional.

Anonymous said...

Anything can be created with photoshop FYI

So you admit all the images linked to as a "Source" are fakes?


Of course, the fact that You Andrew, are a CONVICTED Pot grower means you'd be one to know about the mental state of pot heads.