Tuesday, August 1

Firefox tip-of-the-day

A small tip for Firefox: use mouse gestures for basic operations. They are provided by the mouse gestures extension. I am no big expert here, as I only use three gestures: go back (left), go forward (right) and close tab (down,right). Nevertheless, having these around is already very convenient, because they are so simple and so frequently needed. I usually do browsing with (surprise) my mouse and these gestures streamline the process because now I don't have to care about the toolbar (and the close tab buttton in particular) any more.

If you are only interested in the simple gestures, I found that it helps to disable diagonal gestures: in the extension's properties, Additional Settings tab, set diagonal tolerance to 0 percent. This will disable some advanced gestures but I never wanted those anyway, so it reduces the chance of my gesture being incorrectly recognized. I also disable the New window (down) gesture ("General" tab, "Edit gestures" button) because it would sometimes be activated instead of close tab when the "right" in my "down, right" motion were too small.

Mouse gestures, like anything, need some time to get used to, but after a while they require much less effort than seeking out a button. In a few days you will learn that very little motion is required for the gesture to be recognized. For other applications usually the keyboard is actively used, so keystroke shortcuts would be faster, but for web browsing in particular, mouse gestures fit the bill very well in my opinion.

By the way, Opera supports mouse gestures natively.

In other news, my work on Debian l10n project was mentioned on Debian Weekly News. I found it very funny that they linked to Worldforge, which is an open sorce MMORPG, instead of WordForge, the localisation project. Admittedly I had made this mistake myself previously, and unfortunately WordForge has a much lower profile than WorldForge. Oh well, real news publishers do this kind of stuff all the time :)


Mike said...

Brilliant, I did know a totally blooted mouse gesture extension. This one looks to provide just the usual stuff :)

Giedrius said...

I have been using mouse gestures for several years now. This is one of the best features in the firefox. I am so used to this, that I perform gestures even in ie. Don't ask me why I am using it.

Nice to hear that your efforts have been noticed by Debian team. Congratulations!