Microsoft employee tries Apple’s Safari for Windows, finds ‘a certain Zen-like simplicity’

John Carroll, ZDNet blogger and Microsoft employee, has “opted to download the recently released 3.1 version of Safari for Windows,” he reports. “Safari is a browser based on the open source Konqueror web browser that Apple developed as a way to make itself less dependent on the whims of a certain third-party software company by whom I am employed. These days, it is as identifiable with Mac computers as Internet Explorer is with Windows.”

“Firefox and Opera never really kept my interest for long enough to become tools I used regularly. I don’t find the Firefox UI all that exceptional, and I have always found the Opera interface downright ugly (tastes vary, clearly, so please take that as just my opinion). Therefore, I didn’t have high expectations when I installed Safari Friday evening. I had seen Safari on a Mac platform and thought that it was nice enough, but I didn’t expect them to try to bring the Mac UI experience to Windows,” Carroll reports.

“I was clearly wrong. Safari looks exactly like Safari on the Mac, from the scrollbars to the check boxes that appear on web pages. Exceptions are made to accommodate certain Windows UI conventions, such as the fact that menus travel with applications rather than affixing themselves to the top of the computer screen once an application is activated (as is the case on a Mac),” Carroll reports.

“Further, unlike my experience with Firefox or Opera, I find myself completely hooked by Safari for Windows, and used it in preference to IE every time I got on the web this weekend,” Carroll reports.

“Apple claims that the Safari browser is the fastest HTML-rendering browser around, and based on my limited experience, it certainly feels zippy. Though that’s certainly important, of greater note was the user interface. The UI has a certain Zen-like simplicity to it, and though I can’t quite put my finger on it, text on menus seems considerably easier to read (probably something to do with fonts, but whatever the case, it looks very nice),” Carroll reports.

“All things considered, I think it serves as a great alternative browser,” Carroll reports.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: All in all, a hilarious read; Safari looks better, it works better, its prefs have clarity, its text looks better… but, he can’t quite put his finger on why. The guy seems shocked at how much he likes Safari. Now, let’s wait and see if he gets the bright idea to extrapolate.


  1. Safari for Windows, finds ‘a certain Zen-like simplicity’

    Interestingly enough I always felt IE had a “ZUNE-like” simplicity. I guess hardware and software departments walk hand in hand. Tang, your thoughts?

  2. Regarding the MDN take. Once again MDN takes a favorable article and treats it with disdain. Can MDN never take a compliment without quibbling, sniping and finding fault? Being petty and reproachful is not the same as being clever and witty. And there is no fault in accepting kind words with grace and understanding.

  3. ericdano,

    You can access your bookmarks by clicking Bookmarks in the .Mac navigation bar or typing directly into your browser.

    You can use your .Mac Bookmarks to visit your favorite sites and add bookmarks as you browse. When you sync your Mac with your .Mac account, a copy of your Safari bookmarks are automatically stored on the .Mac servers. You can access them from any computer, make changes, and even add new bookmarks, all by accessing the .Mac site.

    Of course, if you use multiple Macs, you can keep your .Mac Bookmarks synchronized with all of them. On each Mac, open System Preferences, click .Mac, then click Sync and check Bookmarks on the list of data to be synchronized.

    DIrect link (you’ll need to login to .Mac):

  4. You’ve got to give a little credit to Microsoft for letting their employees blog freely. I don’t think this would happen at Apple.

    In any event, Safari is terrrific. I’m glad some people are noticing.

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