Neil Turner's Blog

Blogging about technology and randomness since 2002

Intelligent Autocomplete

Mozilla 1.3 beta has a nifty up-and-coming feature called ‘Intelligent Autocomplete’. Normally, when you start typing an address in the address bar, a menu pops up with suggestions, based on your browsing history. However, this system is about to get more intelligent, thanks to the machine learning project. All you have to do is enable a preference in your user.js file and then after about 2 weeks send back a file which contains data for the Mozilla team to analyse. From this data, the Mozilla developers can create a more intelligent list of items in the pull-down menu, so that it will show the pages you are most likely to want nearer the top. It’s all rather cool, really.
I have to say I’m very happy with Mozilla 1.3 beta. It’s not crashed on me yet, and seems marginally faster than its predecessor (this is backed up by findings from, from which I got the information above from). The popup whitelisting system is great, and is a much needed feature from Phoenix. The ChatZilla improvements are welcome, as are the much improved mail and spam filters – now I can have a filter for ‘everyone in my address book’, rather than having to maintain a special list of email addresses. And the Preferences panel has seen a much needed update, with new Chatzilla options, tweaks for ‘Type as you find’ (formerly known as Type Ahead Find) and a new panel for popup control. IE-esque image resizing has been added too, although I’m keeping it turned off as the resize routine is very basic.
Themes are a little thin on the ground, but Orbit 3+1 has been updated, and it is quite frankly the best theme at the moment.
While I’m not going to be deleting 1.2.1 just yet, I think this release has staying power. The Mozilla developers deserve a pat on the back.

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