Mozilla is launching a NEW Android web browser and they needed our help to get it ready for the free and open web. They asked US to become a fearless beta tester and BUG HUNTER to gather with friends and family, we installed this brand new browser and tested it until we could test no more! This is our experience! ❤

DATE & TIME:

June 09, 2019–1200 to 1700 Hours.

VENUE:

Soul Brew Cafe, Vasna, Vadodara

ATTENDANCE: 9 People

PERSONAL NOTE:

As we move to an era on the web where accountability is rare and everything is business, I was very excited to work on something which is privacy-focused! Firefox Preview — a new browser which had toolbar controls on bottom is my absolute favorite since I’d wanted something like that on my phone since I started using my first smartphone — a Lumia 620 in 2013. More so, finally a full-fledged browser with tracking protection and the ability to take control of what you do on the web.

The guys decided and decided that the closest and the easiest to reach for everybody will be the Soul Brew Cafe, so we reached there as soon as we could. We reached and were very happy that the rains weren’t an issue on that day, which was great. This event was also a farewell for our friend who I met a few months ago but I wish I knew him much longer since he had to move back to his home town in Zambia. It was great to catch up with him, even though sadly, it was his first and last meetup with Mozilla Gujarat Community, so we started and first things first, about the browser.

Firefox Preview is a new browser by Mozilla and as Volunteers we were grateful to have a super early look at how a product is built. The Android Browser is based on GeckoView, where Android offers built in WebView, it’s not intended for building browsers, and many advanced Web APIs are disabled. In Contrast, GeckoView is:

Full-Featured.

Self-Contained.

Standards Compliant.

These are very basic things which just speaks what Mozilla’s Mission is with what it does on the Web, and how it chooses to help it’s consumers communicate with the services on the web.

Obviously, finding bugs in a browser is basically sitting there and visit websites to test it out, and try to reproduce what you’ve just seen. It’s everything that we avoid doing when we have company, which is why it was a bit weird for people in the cafe to watch us discuss websites on a browser, but we did.

We did that for hours, talked a lot with coffee and food! After a while it became very monotonous, so we moved the location and had a couple of shakes and found some more bugs and posted them on GitHub as issues & Google Groups. Bugs on app crashes, website behavior and what not. All of us loved that browser is great for one-handed use plus, has great customization options.

We got together, and it was fun! Even before we could arrange an offline meetup, we all had been using Preview since more than 15 days in our everyday-use process and it was buggy yet we felt that we were a part of something bigger, which always feels good.

That’s it for this one guys!

See you guys in the next one.

Peace! :D

Communities. Maker. Speaker. Electronics & Communications Engineer. Techie. Red Devils. Open Source.

Communities. Maker. Speaker. Electronics & Communications Engineer. Techie. Red Devils. Open Source.