02 Nov

ExtremeTech – Mozilla puts Firefox on a memory diet

Firefox’s single largest consumer of RAM, its JavaScript engine SpiderMonkey, is going on the mother of all diets. At any one time, SpiderMonkey’s memory footprint can be over 50% of Firefox’s total usage — the JavaScript on the ExtremeTech homepage, for example, uses no less than 115MB of memory — and slipstreaming SpiderMonkey is by far the best change that Mozilla can make to keep Firefox on the desktop svelte and competitive with Chrome and IE, and Firefox on Android less sluggish.

If you’re not a programmer, you should probably skip this paragraph. Basically, almost every fundamental part of SpiderMonkey is being torn apart, turned over in the hands of Mozilla’s finest engineers, and rejigged to use less memory. JSObject is being cut in half, and thus JSFunction will also be slimmed down. Slots arrays will have the option of being 32-bit, rather than being forcibly being constructed of 64-bit “fatvals.” Shapes, one of SpiderMonkey’s most important data structures, are going to be almost halved in size. Mozilla is currently looking into whether scripts can be “lazily loaded,” too — as much as 70-80% of all downloaded JavaScript is never executed, and so it makes no sense to load it into memory; lazy loading, where scripts are loaded as-needed, would significantly reduce memory usage.

via ExtremeTech – Mozilla puts Firefox on a memory diet. I still use Firefox as my main browser but this is a needed improvement. Hopefully, Mozilla is successful with their improvement.

03 Apr

Mozilla Add-ons Blog – Improving Add-on Performance

Firefox performance is extremely important to our users, especially how quickly it starts up and loads websites. Customization is also extremely important, and while most add-ons cause only a tiny performance impact, others can significantly slow down Firefox. Many users don’t realize add-ons can cause these delays, and that’s why we’re committed to improving performance in a big way.

On average, each add-on you install adds about 10% to Firefox start-up time. For some users that’s mere milliseconds, and for others it may be half a second; it all depends on the hardware and software of each individual. Many add-ons add less than 10%, and unfortunately, there are quite a few add-ons that add more. But based on our real-world performance data, installing 10 add-ons will double Firefox’s start-up time.

via Mozilla Add-ons Blog – Improving Add-on Performance. Nice, that’s a great thing for users, start publishing information regarding the performance of add-ons and start trying to convince programmers to be more intelligent in building add-ons. The number one slowest add-on is Firebug (which makes sense but is awful for web developers), also in the top ten is an add-on supposedly designed to speed up Firefox.

10 Mar

PhobosLab – The State of HTML5 Audio

When I started to work on my JavaScript Game Engine back in October 2009, the biggest problems I encountered were with the new HTML5 Audio Element. The Canvas Element already worked nicely in all browsers that supported it at the time, albeit some were a little slow.

Now, in 2011, the rendering performance for Canvas has been improved dramatically, audio however is still broken in large parts. I think it is time for a change in tone. Be warned, there’s some profanity ahead because HTML5 Audio is still that fucked up.

via PhobosLab – The State of HTML5 Audio. I especially enjoy the specific complaints directed at Apple and Microsoft for only supporting MP3.

17 Jan

CSS-Tricks – Rotating Feature Boxes

The full effect of it (with transition animations) will work in newish WebKit and Opera browsers and Firefox 4 (in real beta as of today). Any other browser will rotate the blocks without transition animation.

via CSS-Tricks – Rotating Feature Boxes. Pretty neat trick, rotate through boxes of html content and display subtitles when the boxes is on the side.

17 Oct

QuirksBlog – The HTML5 drag and drop disaster

After spending about a day and a half in testing I am forced to conclude that the HTML5 drag and drop module is not just a disaster, it’s a fucking disaster.

The module should be removed from the HTML5 specification straight away, and conforming browsers should disable it at their earliest opportunity pending a complete rewrite from the ground up.

Web developers MUST NOT (in the sense of RFC 2119) use HTML 5 drag and drop. They should use old-school scripts instead.

via QuirksBlog – The HTML5 drag and drop disaster. So that’s drag and drop kids.