Apple's Safari 3.1 to support downloadable web fonts, more

Posted:
in Mac Software edited January 2014
The ability to download and immediately render non-standard web fonts is just one of several advancements Apple Inc. has planned for Safari 3.1, a small but significant update to its share-gaining web browser for both the Mac and Windows PCs.



The release, which underwent private testing this week, will tie in a number of other enhancements, most of which have been under constant development as part of the company's WebKit open source application framework since last fall. They aim to provide Web developers a means of writing more dynamic and customizable web pages and iPhone apps, which will in turn provide surfers with a more feature-rich and enjoyable experience.



For example, CSS Transforms and CSS Animations will join web downloadable fonts in allowing Safari 3.1 and iPhone users to render web pages and web apps with enhanced design messages and real-time visual effects. By applying Transforms, developers can author trigger actions that scale, rotate, skew and translate HTML boxes in real time. Similarly, Animations offer a quicker route to DHTML/JavaScript effects, such as fading out an HTML element, or increasing the border of a box when hovered over.



Another significant addition to Safari 3.1 will be support of HTML5's SQL storage application programming interface (API), which is a client-side database storage programming interface that will allow a future array of web applications to store structured data locally on a user's machine using SQL. The API is asynchronous, according to Apple, and uses callback functions to track the results of a database query.







Also on tap for the new version of the Apple browser is support for video and audio tags as outlined in the draft specification of HTML5, which add native support for embedding video and audio content in web pages. Additionally, they provide a rich scripting (API) that will allow developers tailor playback controls.







Among the other features expected as part of Safari 3.1 are enhanced web page debugging tools, a database browser tool that's been built into the Web Inspector for use alongside the new SQL storage API, and a native version of the getElementsByClassName JavaScript function.



The latter is one of the more common functions requested by JavaScript programmers, and often added via clunky JavaScript libraries that serve only to bog down page loads. It works along the same lines as getElementsByTagName and getElementById in looking up elements of a web page by their properties.







According to Apple, the native version of the function provides many advantages, chief among them "blindingly fast" speed. For testing purposes, company engineers wrote a simple benchmark to pit the native version of their function against those using both XPath and a straight JavaScript/DOM implementation. The native function executed 10,000 iterations of the getElementsByClassName benchmark in 155ms, compared to 4,728ms and 13,053ms for the XPath and JavaScript/DOM versions, respectively.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 79
    crebcreb Posts: 276member
    What year will Apple be releasing Safari 3.1?
  • Reply 2 of 79
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Why does Firefox still work better & faster than Safari?
  • Reply 3 of 79
    tenobelltenobell Posts: 7,014member
    Quote:

    Why does Firefox still work better & faster than Safari?



    Is this a known fact or one man's opinion?



    I've found Firefox makes your whole computer run slower.
  • Reply 4 of 79
    tednditedndi Posts: 1,921member
    3.1 by summer!







    seriously,



    This is all wonderful news to rendering speeds for the iphone.
  • Reply 5 of 79
    Still a lot of bugs in the old safari. Started viewing this site today and safari unexpectedly quit. I get that a lot . Especially when i come here to read the articles. It quits about 30 seconds into reading.

    It's like Apple doesn't like the site . And that is what they do on purpose .
  • Reply 6 of 79
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post


    Is this a known fact or one man's opinion?



    I've found Firefox makes your whole computer run slower.



    If you're not a Safari fan, there are several better choices than Firefox ; Camino, SeaMonkey, Navagator 9. . . , Flock. Just to mention several good and free options .
  • Reply 7 of 79
    boogabooga Posts: 1,077member
    Although all these features are pretty much a "yawn" on the internet because no one will use them for years, I think the interesting part is when the iPhone and Touch will get these updates. Especially the local SQL could be really useful for some of the iPhone/Touch-targeted web pages.
  • Reply 8 of 79
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    Why does Firefox still work better & faster than Safari?



    Possibly because Apple has never got the hang of putting network transmission & UI updating under the control of separate threads.



    As another example...try using Finder to connect to a file server which is down or on a slow network....Finder hangs for several minutes until the network connection times out.
  • Reply 9 of 79
    I'm happy that Safari is continuing development.



    However, all I really want is for it to just work. There are soooo many sites that have a problem. For example, t-Mobile, many banks and airlines. You can't apply online for lots of jobs. You cannot even get student loan info from the US government. It's embarrassing.
  • Reply 10 of 79
    gqbgqb Posts: 1,934member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post


    Is this a known fact or one man's opinion?



    I've found Firefox makes your whole computer run slower.



    We run our Mac in multi-user mode, and 9 times out of 10, when returning to my desktop, Firefox is frozen solid, requiring a 'force quit'.

    I need to bite the bullet and switch to Safari as soon as I take the time to figure out how to xfer my bookmarks.
  • Reply 11 of 79
    Would've been cool to have seen Safari 3.1 rolled into 10.5.2! Certainly Safari is less stable in Mac OS X 10.5!
  • Reply 12 of 79
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post


    Is this a known fact or one man's opinion?



    I've found Firefox makes your whole computer run slower.



    Me too.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bobo28 View Post


    If you're not a Safari fan, there are several better choices than Firefox ; Camino, SeaMonkey, Navagator 9. . . , Flock. Just to mention several good and free options.



    Firefox's add-ons are huge plus to many.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by drjjones View Post


    Still a lot of bugs in the old safari. Started viewing this site today and safari unexpectedly quit. I get that a lot . Especially when i come here to read the articles. It quits about 30 seconds into reading.

    It's like Apple doesn't like the site . And that is what they do on purpose .



    hehe I can't recall Safari quitting once while using 3.0. That is, until today while trying to read this article on Safari 3.1.
  • Reply 13 of 79
    .mac.mac Posts: 44member
    L0ve safari :d
  • Reply 14 of 79
    as nice as this is, and as nice as safari is, I wish they'd put more effort into making Safari less resource-hungry. it gobbles up memory like there's no tomorrow.
  • Reply 15 of 79
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,946member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    Why does Firefox still work better & faster than Safari?



    At least there's a choice.



    I can't get Firefox to last longer than three days without requiring a restart, with the latest versions of 1.5 and 2.0. But I wouldn't use Safari or Camino long term, they're too inflexible.
  • Reply 16 of 79
    I'm curious - are those of you having problems with Safari running any plugins? I find Safari to be faster than Firefox and very stable. This was not the case with Safari 2, but Safari 3 has been a huge improvement to me. It has replaced Firefox as my default browser for personal use, although I still use FF for development.



    I realize this is all anecdotal but I'm still curious.
  • Reply 17 of 79
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post


    At least there's a choice.



    I can't get Firefox to last longer than three days without requiring a restart, with the latest versions of 1.5 and 2.0. But I wouldn't use Safari or Camino long term, they're too inflexible.



    So what do you use? I find Safari hangs on some sites forever especially one's with imageing whereas Firefox just snaps. I still use Safari as my default because I prefer the interface but it does has issues.
  • Reply 18 of 79
    I also disagree that developers won't use the HTML5 features for years. I'll begin using them immediately in cases where they will offer a better user experience under the principles of progressive enhancement. Downloadable fonts come immediately to mind.
  • Reply 19 of 79
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post


    Is this a known fact or one man's opinion?



    I've found Firefox makes your whole computer run slower.



    It's obviously more than one man's opinion as you can see more than one man's complaint today.
  • Reply 20 of 79
    buckbuck Posts: 293member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ken the macster View Post


    I'm happy that Safari is continuing development.



    However, all I really want is for it to just work. There are soooo many sites that have a problem. For example, t-Mobile, many banks and airlines. You can't apply online for lots of jobs. You cannot even get student loan info from the US government. It's embarrassing.



    Talk to the webmasters so they can have their websites fixed. 95% of the time that happens because they don't want/know how to follow the web standards. If nobody acts on that nothing will ever change.
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