Firefox Evangelizer

There was a time — a dark time — when the NPR IT department didn't support Mozilla's browser Firefox. ("Support!? What do you mean support!? The whole point is it isn't as big a PAIN as IE!!!") I ran it off of thumb drives, found workarounds, and evangelized: "There's a shopping toolbar!" So, even though those days are over, and now I'm just as sick of Firefox as I once was of Internet Explorer, I was pleased to read this anecdote in Farhad Manjou's column on Slate.

During a town hall meeting for State Department workers last month, an employee named Jim Finkle asked Hillary Clinton a very important question: "Can you please let the staff use an alternative Web browser called Firefox?" The room erupted in cheers. Finkle explained that he'd previously worked at the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency, where everyone enjoyed Firefox. "So I don't understand why State can't use it," he said. "It's a much safer program."

The mysteries of IT are myriad — that might be the beginning of a poem, actually — but Manjou's column (which I never miss) is a paean to all the times I've had to call someone to update my flash player. Give me back my free will! (And Second Life, too, if you could.)

Sidenote: One thing I like about Internet Explorer is that its name says what it does. It explores the internet! What the heck is a Firefox? Why is Opera in anyway indicative of a browser experience?

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