Regarding Safari 1.3

As a developer of web applications, you pay close attention to browser performance – especially where it suffers. For a long time, you’ve been living in a limbo between two worlds: Safari’s poor page-rendering speed but good-looking widgets, and Firefox’s fast, consistent page rendering but clunky, slow-to-respond, cumbersome, un-Mac-like interface.

One of the things you noticed right away about Tiger (you are an Apple Developer using a legitimate seed, not a bootlegger) was Safari’s speediness. The new WebCore is great, and it’s really taken the browser to a new level.

And now, people who update to 10.3.9 get the new WebCore as part of Safari 1.3 without upgrading to Tiger!

Hyatt says:

What you are getting is all of the new standards support, new WebKit capabilites, site compatibility fixes and performance optimizations that are also present in Safari 2.0 for Tiger. The layout engines for the two are virtually identical.

Although Safari 1.3 (in Panther) on your dual-G5 doesn’t feel quite as speedy as Safari 2.0 (in Tiger) on your single-G4 Powerbook, the improvements are still quite palpable.

The improvements here in JavaScript performance are significant, something that will make Rails developers using XmlHttpRequest Javascript (the so-called “Ajax”) functions very happy. Everything seems a good bit faster and more stable.

There are also some very thought-provoking updates to Safari that should make Objective-C developers very happy. Somebody needs to take advantage of this and develop a great WYSIWYG editor and release it immediately. The ones currently available are at best sub-par when running under Safari. Consider what is now available to work with:

HTML Editing

Safari 1.3 supports HTML editing, both at the Objective-C WebKit API level and using contenteditable and designMode in a Web page. The new Mail app in Tiger uses WebKit for message composition. You can write apps that make use of WebKit’s editing technology and deploy them on Panther and Tiger.

The DOM Exposed

The entire level 2 DOM has been exposed a public API in Objective-C. This means various holes have been filled in Safari’s DOM level 2 support. In addition to exposing the DOM to Objective-C, the JS objects that wrap DOM objects can also be accessed from Objective-C, allowing you to examine and edit the JS objects themselves to inject properties onto them that can then be accessed from your Web page.

Great things lie ahead for this, our platform of choice.

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