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New tablet UI for Firefox on Android

3 de Dezembro de 2014, por Desconhecido - 0sem comentários ainda

The new tablet UI for Firefox on Android is now available on Nightly and, soon, Aurora! Here’s a quick overview of the design goals, development process, and implementation.

Design & Goals

Our main goal with the new tablet UI was to simplify the interaction with tabs—read Yuan Wang’s blog post for more context on the design process.

In 36, we focused on getting a solid foundation in place with the core UI changes. It features a brand new tab strip that allows you to create, remove and switch tabs with a single tap, just like on Firefox on desktop.

The toolbar got revamped with a cleaner layout and simpler state changes.

Furthermore, the fullscreen tab panel—accessible from the toolbar—gives you a nice visual overview of your tabs and sets the stage for more advanced features around tab management in future releases.

Development process

At Mozilla, we traditionally work on big features in a separate branch to avoid disruptions in our 6-week development cycles. But that means we don’t get feedback until the feature lands in mozilla-central.

We took a slightly different approach in this project. It was a bit like replacing parts of an airplane while it’s flying.

We first worked on the necessary changes to allow the app to have parallel UI implementations in a separate branch. We then merged the new code to mozilla-central and did most of the UI development there.

This approach enabled us to get early feedback in Nightly before the UI was considered feature-complete.

Implementation

In order to develop the new UI directly in mozilla-central, we had to come up with a way to run either the old or the new tablet UIs in the same build.

We broke up our UI code behind interfaces with multiple concrete implementations for each target UI, used view factories to dynamically instantiate parts of the UI, prefixed overlapping resources, and more.

The new tab strip uses the latest stable release of TwoWayView which got a bunch of important bug fixes and couple of new features such as smooth scroll to position.


Besides improving Firefox’s UX on Android tablets, the new UI lays the groundwork for some cool new features. This is not a final release yet and we’ll be landing bug fixes until 36 is out next year. But you can try it now in our Nightly builds. Let us know what you think!



Joining Facebook

27 de Novembro de 2014, por Desconhecido - 0sem comentários ainda

I am really excited to announce that I’m joining Facebook in January! I’ll be bootstrapping Android UI efforts—frameworks and user-facing stuff—in the London office. There are still a lot of details to sort out but that’s the general plan.

Why Facebook? They have an amazing hacker-driven culture, they’re striving to do open source the right way, there’s a lot of space for experimentation, and they have massive reach in the Android space.

I’m really looking forward to learning a lot at Facebook. And there is so much to be done! I can’t wait to start :-)



Leaving Mozilla

26 de Novembro de 2014, por Desconhecido - 0sem comentários ainda

I joined Mozilla 3 years, 4 months, and 6 days ago. Time flies!

I was very lucky to join the company a few months before the Firefox Mobile team decided to rewrite the product from scratch to make it more competitive on Android. And we made it: Firefox for Android is now one of the highest rated mobile browsers on Android!

This has been the best team I’ve ever worked with. The talent, energy, and trust within the Firefox for Android group are simply amazing.

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time here but an exciting opportunity outside Mozilla came up and decided to take it.

What’s next? That’s a topic for another post ;-)



Things to celebrate

20 de Novembro de 2014, por Desconhecido - 0sem comentários ainda

Turning 35 today, then I get the great news that the person whom I share my dreams with has just become a Debian member! Isn't beautiful? Thanks Tássia, thanks Debian! I should also thank friends who make an ideal ambience for tonight's fun.



A few words on the recent Brazilian elections

4 de Novembro de 2014, por Desconhecido - 0sem comentários ainda

The Brazilian presidential election was exceedingly intense this year. Among many inferences that we can make by following the news and investigating data from the voting results I'd like to share this one, which in my opinion reflects quite well the vote preferences in the country.

First, let me introduce you "Belágua", a small town located in the Northeast region of Brazil. It has 6,524 habitants, 3 buses and 2 hospitals. According to the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE), the income per person in Belágua is $146 BRL (or U$59) per month. Believe it or not, it used to be much less. Actually, the city reported in 2013 the highest economic jump in the country, rising more than a thousand positions in the ranking of GDP per capita (from position 4,991 to 3,849). This recent growth was consequence of the social welfare program of the Brazilian government, which also boosted artisanal and manioc flour production. This federal assistance is called "Bolsa família", which benefits 1.814 families in Belágua.

"Bolsa Família currently gives families with per-capita monthly income below $140 BRL (poverty line, ~$56 USD) a monthly stipend of $32 BRL (~$13 USD) per vaccinated child (< 16 years old) attending school (up to 5), and $38 BRL (~$15 USD) per youth (16 or 17 years old) attending school (up to 2). Furthermore, to families whose per-capita monthly income below $70 BRL (extreme poverty line, ~$28 USD), the program gives the Basic Benefit $70 BRL per month."

(from Wikipedia)

Contrary to what many of my middle-class friends believe, and as you can calculate yourself, this little amount of money does not offer anybody a luxury life. It does not make anybody stopping working, nor stopping looking for paid job (but yes, it makes people to start saying NO to forced labor, which is amazing, right?).

/images/belagua.jpg

Belágua, where Dilma got 93.93% of votes (photo by Clarissa Carramilo / from G1)

Also, Belágua has no much physicians around because doctors in Brazil usually wouldn't live in a such city. But now Belágua population can be treated by foreign doctors imported by the recently launched program "Mais Médicos" (More Physicians for Brazil), which hosts two Cuban doctors 15km away. Finally, Belágua people have light, due to the "Luz para Todos" ("Light for All") program.

It's not surprising that Belágua has re-elected the party which has motivated these changes. For 2014 presidential election, Belágua people gave 3.558 votes (93.93%) to Dilma Rousseff (candidate of the current government, from a left-ish party), against 230 (6,07%) to Aécio Neves (from the right coalition), being the city with the largest amount of votes for Dilma, proportionally, followed by "Serrano do Maranhão" (93,75%), which is located in the same region.

On the other hand, the city which gave, proportionally, the largest amount of votes for Aécio Neves has a population of 5,564,635 habitants, where most of citizens are not Brazilians, not yet. Miami, located in US, was the city where Brazilian residents would elect Aécio by 7,225 votes (91,79%), against 646 (8,21%) for Dilma, followed by Atlanta/US (89,47%) and Houston/US (89,22%).

/images/miami.jpg

Miami, where 91,79% of Brazilians voted Aécio (photo by Marc Averette / from Wikipedia)

It's so clear that we do what people call "selfish vote". In general, we don't care about which party has better proposals for the society as whole. Rich people will go against any serious social equality proposal, which will necessarily be followed by higher taxes on their fortunes. As middle class citizens, we care about dollar rates, because we want to get cheaper iStuff from Miami. We're also very upset by the fact that new apartments are being built without that small room in the back, which has been used to accommodate a subservient housemaid who, until last year was not even legally considered a worker.

Those people from Belágua, who used to live in extreme poverty for decades, serving as slaves, they mostly care about having something to eat. Now they eat, so they can think better, they can work, they can sell what they produce in their little yard. And like middle-class and rich citizens, they will give their vote in exchange of what they think is better for them. The big difference here is, if we ask Belágua people why they voted for Dilma, with no embarrassment they will make it very clear, that's because her government has provided them lots of benefits. Asking the same question for most Brazilians in Miami, Atlant, Houston or São Paulo, you'll get not only a bunch of allegedly moral/altruistic reasons, but they will also try to delegitimize in many ways the votes from those marginalized citizens. You'll never get the real reasons from them. They will even try to convince you that whoever receives federal assistance should automatically lose right to vote. Such a statement may seem ridiculous, however it has been very present recently. Actually, such hate speech is happening right now. While I'm writing this post about 2500 people are protesting in São Paulo streets, asking for an immediate military coup because they don't agree with the elections result. These people keep pushing the limits of ridiculousness.

Dilma won with 51.64% of valid votes, a very tight result. The country is clearly divided, mostly by hate, unfortunately.