If you use Chimera to browse the web, you may have noticed that it doesn't use anti-aliasing on small font sizes. Of course, two other Cocoa-native browsers do: Safari and OmniWeb; why not Chimera? The answer lies in the fact that Chimera uses Mozilla's Gecko rendering engine, which itself is using Carbon APIs to render the text. The UI of Chimera may be written in Cocoa, but the rendering engine is pure Carbon.
The way to fix this is to grab TinkerTool (v2.32) if you don't already have it, and enable the Manipulate font smoothing for applications using QuickDraw option under the Font Smoothing tab. Set the size field to, say, 4 or 6, logout/login, and voila!
As an example of the differences, these are before and after shots of a small section of the New York Times front page rendered in Chimera.
As I was reading a recent hint on how to change the Finder's window focus, I discovered this hint. I was dragging a PDF file to a Finder window, and by accident I dropped it on the bookmark bar in Safari. Safari asked me what name I wanted to give this bookmark and voila, I have a shortcut to a file in the bookmark bar!!
I think Safari will do this with most files as long as it has a plugin to read the file (I have a PDF browser plugin). Useful if you consult certain documents or graphics frequently and you don't want to open their native applications.
[Editor's note: This is a useful trick for things like QuickTime movies and HTML instructional pages -- I now have a folder of HTML help pages for a few key apps that I reference often. I'm not sure why I never tried this in other browsers, but it works just fine in Chimera, but not Mozilla (the only two thers I use any more). Safari is actually a bit more restrictive than Chimera in that if it can't handle a file type, it won't let you drop it on the shortcuts bar.]
OK, so it's not really true tab emulation. But the end effect is similar, though not quite perfect. Last week, MacBase published a tutorial on how to use AppleScript and REALbasic to create a window manager of sorts for Safari. If you don't have REALbasic, the compiled script can be downloaded from MacBase at the end of the tutorial.
I installed it and gave it a try, and while it won't replace tabs in Chimera and Mozilla, it does make it easier to manage multiple Safari windows. When launched, a small floating palette appears that lists all open Safari windows, and you can bring any window to the foreground simply by clicking on its name.
It's not a perfect workaround (the windows get reordered when you click them, unlike tabs, and it's sometimes slow to update when you open or change a window), but it's definitely a nicer way to manage multiple open pages than the alternatives (cycling through all, mousing to the dock, or mousing to the menus).
I'll personally stick with Chimera/Mozilla until Apple finds a better way to handle multiple pages in Safari (though I use Safari for loading large sites and I keep it open with a few of my "information" sites (CNN, etc.) always loaded). And now, I'll leave the Tabbed Safari script running to make it easier to pop open the exact informational page I want to see...
This may be of interest to web-developers. As far as I know, Safari is the first Mac browser to make use of favicon.ico files (the tiny icon that represents a site on Windows Internet Explorer). Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong [Editor: Chimera supports them].
Web-developers may have noticed that Safari caches these icons and there's no way to get Safari to reload it from the site if you change this icon. "Empty Cache..." etc. doesn't do it. This is annoying if you have made a new one for your site and want to see it in Safari.
Since the .ico cache took me quite a while to find, others might have had the same trouble. It's in ~/Library -> Caches -> com.apple.WebKit -> Icons. To empty the cache, quit Safari and send the Icons folder to the trash (or anywhere). You can apparently do this without affecting anything else in Safari. Use at your own risk, but I have done this several times over several weeks without problems.
If anyone discovers how to delete an individual .ico from the cache, let us know.
Update for 1.0: Reader LouieNet writes in with this change for Safari final:
With the release of Safari 1.0 (v85), however, that cache directory has been moved to ~/Library/Safari/Icons. To remove the whole cache, simply quit Safari and delete the new cache directory. (Alternatively, may want to use the find command if you know the creation date, etc.)
I'm not sure if the new structure makes it any easier to remove an individual favicon or not...
If you click and hold the Safari back button, the history list pops up underneath it. While not exactly earth-shattering, it was news to me and quicker than the history menu.
[Editor's note: In addition to the site's name, you'll also see its site icon (or the generic URL icon) in the pop-up list. And yes, this is a simple tip, and I know it works in some other browsers, but I hadn't seen it mentioned for Safari yet.]
Now what I just discovered is that this is limited to the manual browser login check. If you fire up MSN Messenger and click on the Mail icon with Safari set as your default browser, it will take you right in with no problems.
You may have noticed that Safari allows you to have new browser windows open with the bookmarks loaded, in addition to the home page, last page, or nothing. Since you can edit the Safari UI with Interface Builder, you can also change the Home button in the toolbar to open the bookmarks, essentially making the bookmarks your home page.
To make this change, find Safari.app in the Finder and do Show Package Contents from the contextual menu. Then go to Contents -> Resources -> English.lproj. Quit Safari and make a backup of Browser.nib. Then open Browser.nib with Interface Builder (requires the Develeoper Tools). Select the leftmost button that isn't greyed out, and open the inspector with Command-Shift-I.
To change the button's behavior, select Connections from the pulldown menu, and click Disconnect. Then pick target/toggleShowBookmarks and click Connect. Save and close Interface Builder and restart Safari.
[Editor's note: I have not tested this myself, and definitely heed the backup advice -- you can fairly easily break the app while working in Interface Builder.]
For those college-bound folks (and parents) who need to fill out the FAFSA forms on the FAFSA web site, you can successfully use Safari to fill out the forms on-line if you use Safari Enhancer to enable the debug menu (or use this hint) and then turn on the User Agent = Windows MSIE 6.0. Without this tip, there is no Mac OS X compatible browser that will work with the FAFSA forms.
Safari also works just fine with the CSS Profile, without having to make the User Agent adjustments.
A lot of times there are links in Read Me files which you need to copy and paste into a browser from TextEdit, or use a Service menu item to go to the URL. But you can also select the URL and drag and drop it into a browser window. In Chimera, you can also drag and drop the link on the Tab Bar which will open the link in a new Tab, or drop it over a specific tab to open the link in that tab.
You can also drag links from within Chimera over the Tab Bar to open the link in a new tab as discussed in a recent hint. Dragging any word onto Chimera will also open the .com of that word. For instance, if you selected the word "apple" from a sentence and dropped it on a tab, it would open www.apple.com.
[Editor's note: Of course, drag and drop is a 'normal' Mac technology, but Chimera seems to do more with it than, for example, Safari. In Safari, you can only drop fully formed URLs; Chimera handles basic words and partial URLs, such as 'www.somesite.com' or 'somesite.com' that Safari ignores.]
If you have a lot of bookmarks in Safari, you might find it useful to search them for certain keywords.
The solution is quite simple. Just open your bookmarks window, then press Command-F and type your search into the text field. Type Command-G to search for more instances of the same word. Safari will highlight the folder, in which the bookmark is contained as well as the bookmark itself. Nifty!
[Editor's note: Yes, "Search" is on the menus and we generally don't publish menu hints, but two things make this hint worth publishing. First, you may not have realized that the search menu works on the bookmarks folder. Second, and the most useful to me personally, is that it works on a folder by folder basis, which means you can click once on History and use search to find that site regarding "tech toys" that you visited who knows how long ago...]