Firefox 2 was just released and I think that most of you would agree that one of the most popular features is the inline spell checking. Everyone seems to love that since we have become so accustomed to using it in word processors such as Microsoft Word and OpenOffice.org.
Firefox is the only web browser that I know of that has the inline spell checking but other browsers, such as Flock, also have spell checking functionality. These spell checkers are typically initiated by pressing a “Spell Check” button which isn’t quite as easy but it is still useful.
Internet Explorer is one of the browsers that lacks any kind of built-in spell checker. The ieSpell add-on, however, will let you spell check any text fields in Internet Explorer but it doesn’t do it inline like Firefox does. You’ll receive the standard prompt that walks you through the spelling mistakes one at a time.
Early last week I discussed another add-on that mimics the Find As You Type feature that Firefox has. Maybe the IE team should take some notes from the add-ons that people are creating to add functionality to their browser. Mozilla learned from extension developers when they were working on Firefox 2 because several of the new features had already been done with extensions, like the Undo Close Tab and Session Restore.
In Windows Vista I never even have to use Internet Explorer anymore because they pulled Windows Update from being web-based to being a Control Panel module. In the few weeks that I have been using Vista I think I’ve only opened IE twice…and both of those were to answer questions that someone had asked me.