I am writing this blog post in Netscape. Yes, Netscape; I’m basking in its warm, nostalgic glow right now. After a few years of diddly squat, there’s a new version of Netscape Navigator now available for the Macintosh, as well as for Windows and Linux, according to the Netscape browser web site. Release Candidate 1 of Netscape Navigator 9.0 became available for free download October 1, apparently. For those of you who were keeping track (which probably means nobody except for the poor schlubs at AOL stuck working on it), the last version of Netscape available for computers not running Windows was version 7, and that was many, many years ago.
I’m really not sure what exactly inspired AOL to take another stab at resurrecting it, since Netscape has been basically a rebranded and bloated-up version of whatever the people at Mozilla were primarily working on for most of the last decade. If you already have Firefox, SeaMonkey, Camino (if you have a Mac), K-Meleon (if you have a Windows PC), Flock, or any other number of Gecko-based web browsers, there really isn’t any practical reason to have Netscape as well as them, since it’s basically the same thing. I know I’m oversimplifying there, but the “about” window of Netscape 9.0RC1 pretty much says its core is ripped off from Firefox 22.214.171.124, the current version.
But who cares about practicality, anyway? You open the program by clicking on the familiar “N” icon, and the splash screen says “Netscape Navigator,” darn it! That should count for something . . . Maybe . . . Or not . . . Whatever . . .
In other dorky web browser items, here’s a list of sites that make Firefox (or SeaMonkey, or Netscape, or a partridge in a pear tree) sad.