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Firefox has finally managed to roll-out their GUI redesign. Although it has an uncanny resemblance to Google’s elite Chrome browser, Mozilla who boasts about the refurbishment as ‘Mozilla Introduces the Most Customizable Firefox Ever with an Elegant New Design‘ is adamant that they have enhanced the functionality as well. Customization and Firefox Sync is boosted up and Bookmarking and accessing Add-ons Manager have been simplified.

Mozilla in their blog states:

We reimagined and redesigned Firefox to reflect how you use the Web today and we are excited to introduce many features including an elegant and fun design, new menu, customization mode and an enhanced Firefox Sync service powered by Firefox Accounts.

According to them, the improvements are as follows:

  • Elegant New Design: Sleek new tabs and an overall modern look that makes it easier to experience the Web the way you want.
  • Customization Mode: Makes it easy for you to personalize your Web experience to access the features you use the most. You can easily drag and drop your favorite feature, tool or add-on in the menu or toolbar.
  • Firefox Menu: Includes popular browser controls, features and add-ons in one place to make it easier and faster to access them. The menu is completely customizable so you can edit or add features you use most.
  • Fun and Simple Bookmarks: You can create bookmarks with a single click and manage them from the same place.
  • Easy Access to Add-ons Manager: Firefox includes an Add-ons Manager you can access directly from the menu to help easily discover and install add-ons.
  • Enhanced Firefox Sync Powered by Firefox Accounts: Just create a Firefox Account and our sync feature makes it even easier to setup and add multiple devices with end-to-end encryption. Firefox Sync gives you access to Awesome Bar history, saved passwords, bookmarks, open tabs and form data across your computers and mobile Android devices.

Along with these novelties, Firefox has continued to strengthen its compatibility with Web Platforms and Developer Tools.

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Mozilla announced the first two smartphones based on its operating system, Firefox OS on Monday: the ZTE Open and Alcatel One Touch Fire.

The two devices will soon be available through Telefonica and Deutsche Telekom. Telefonica announced that the ZTE Open will be offered in Spain starting on July 2 for 69 euros ($90).

Individual partners will release the dates of availability for each market. Mozilla said that the first Firefox OS will launch in Central and Eastern Europe under the wing of Norway-based Telenor “this year.”

Mozilla’s Firefox OS, which was one of the main topics during this year’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, is a HTML-based, open source mobile OS that should provide a user-friendly alternative to Android, especially on entry-level handsets. Mozilla hopes to conquer much of Central and Eastern Europe, Asia and Latin America with Firefox OS — most of which are currently dominated by cheap Android devices.

ZTE Open is a 3.5-inch smartphone with a 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 256MB of RAM, a 3.2-megapixel camera, Bluetooth, A-GPS and Wi-Fi.

Alcatel One Touch Fire boasts nearly identical specs, but is powered by a Qualcomm processor.

Image courtesy of ZTE

Source: Mashable

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by Chanuke Senevirathne

Mozilla has a great party engine called mozilla party central (http://mozillaparty.com). With that the whole Firefox fan community can celebrate new releases of their beloved browser. People organize parties locally&share the experience with whole world through the party engine.

Among other releases, Firefox 3 release was a huge party element. Because it was not just another release. It was a world record. Firefox 3 holds the Guinness world record for the “Most software downloads in 24 hours”. Hope you can imagine how much hype it has made at the time or better yet you may be a part of that world record.

Firefox has several fan communities all around the world, and they are all glued together by their web site, spreadfirefox.com. Firefox campus reps is a fan community made of Firefox loving University students all around the world. The campus reps of each country had a chance to grab a special Firefox party pack to add more fun to their local Firefox 3 party events.

Lahiru Priyadarshana (http://blog.soundofcode.com), also a contributor to digit magazine, is the one who brought the party pack to Sri Lanka. OK now it’s obvious he is a Firefox campus rep I guess.

So the party pack was here almost right on time but unfortunately the community was kind of busy. Once we almost organized a party but the luck was not with us to take that “Beach Party” in to reality. Anyway the Firefox 3 launch party happened in Sri Lanka few days …err … maybe weeks back, Finally.

The major problem we had is finding a location for the party. We can’t believe that it’s really hard to find an open place to hold a free  event in Sri Lanka (or at least WE are not aware of such a place). Anyway the final destinantion for the Firefox party was The Linux Center, which is owned by that cool Linux guy Suchetha Wijenayake (http://raramimu.blogspot.com) fondly known as Such. We were lucky that The Linux Center rebooted recently so Such kindly provided the space&we were busy spreading the word about the event via Linux Users group mailing list, Facebook & Twitter etc.

Finally the event took place at TLC, Nugegode around 16:00 2nd may 2009. Even though some long time Firefox fans missed the event for several reasons the event was filled with fun. Such was kind enough to provide an excessive amount of wade&coke. And there were some cool friends who put some more coke in the event too. And ofcourse I should thank Seejay (http://seejay.net) (AKA Chanaka) for bearing the burden of organizing the event.

Techno&trance music filled the event while everyone had a chance to talk to other Firefox fans. Most of the crowd has never met before even though some were good online friends. So the Firefox party was a great chance for everyone to make new friends&actually talk to their online friends. While the geeky chat was on, everyone was given a *mysterious* number. Sounds like more of a horror movie?

Seejay had a special python script to randomly choose three gift items for each partygoer, who were already wearing Firefox party hats ;) . Did I mention that the party pack was filled with Firefox Stickers, Tattoos, Lanyards, Badges & Wrist bands?. While everyone is getting their portion of gift pack according to the *mysterious* number, the chat was still on, the music was still rocking & some were hacking, the party was really startling.

I would like to thank everyone who dropped by & helped making the Firefox party a happening event & never let anyone feel we are late celebrating the thing. Hope we can have more of these more frequently. Am I becoming a party animal?