Camino (nee Chimera) is Mozilla's Mac OS X only web browser. It's Cocoa based (which means it was specifically developed for Mac OS X, and doesn't run on earlier Mac's). Supposedly Camino is more polished than Firebird, but I didn't notice that. Certainly the typical mix of pages I visited had no issues in either of these.
Camino is also supposed to be faster, but that's hard to see also. In my testing, there were times where I would like to have convinced my self that Camino seemed more snappy than Firebird, but it's really hard to tell. If it is faster, the differences are very minor and would only show up under unusual conditions.
Camino happily loaded a web site that uses a movie as their opening page , but doesn't display XML pages as Firebird and Internet Explorer do. Interestingly, it isn't that it displays them as text either: it's trying to do something, so it just strips out the tags and displays what's left as a jumbled mess. With a very large page like https://www.weblogs.com/changes.xml, it loaded the data quickly, but was unable to display anything.
Camino displays FTP sites itself, which I like much better than Safari's way of handing them off to Finder. Plugins are included for Shockwave Flash, Quicktime and Java: type "about:plugin" (no spaces) in the Location bar. Camino doesn't have the extension ability of Firebird, though.
Overall, this is obviously less than Firebird. On the other hand, the code is supposedly cleaner and less apt to cause problems. I have to wonder why this exists at all: what's the point? Mozilla could make platform specific versions for Windows and Linux, but that hasn't been done. Why make a Mac only browser, especially when the supposed advantages really don't seem to be all that marked?
I'll keep my eye on Camino and Firebird, but my feeling right now is that Firebird is probably the better choice for Mac users.
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More Articles by Tony Lawrence © 2012-07-12 Tony Lawrence