Posted in Technology and Software

Tempted by Stephen Fry

With his article …on pimping your browser, Stephen Fry will have prompted a spate of people to try out new ‘skins’ on their Firefox browsers – including me. I looked at the themes before, in fact only a few days ago, but what always put me off going for any of the Firefox add-ons is the message “unsigned… you should only install software from sources that you trust.”

My mother…? That rather limits my options!

This time I decided if those themes on the Firefox page were fine for Stephen Fry, they were fine for me… (cue all those techy guys to snort even more). If anything goes wrong, though, I won’t blame him – I’ll blame myself for finally giving way to temptation.

I downloaded a bundle of Firefox themes from the Mozilla site and went through them, one by one. Most of them were too grey. What is it about the colour grey?? I don’t mind silvery ones if they do have a bit of a shine to them, but flat grey or even pale grey mixed with white has always struck me as rather dreich.

But look who’s blogging – you only need to glance at (my past Blogigo) theme and my other one on the Blogspot to realize that grey doesn’t have a lot of place in my life. (I wish they would come up with some nicer-coloured Nav bars in Blogger – the other three are even worse).

It doesn’t stop with the web… I don’t use plain white pages in my general applications if I can avoid it. Ages ago I went into the Firefox preferences, clicked on the Content tab and changed the page colour to a soft violet blue. Sometimes it shows up behind web pages. I tinted my MS Word documents on the PC (I can’t remember how) but couldn’t figure out how to do it on the Mac. (There’s a ‘blue backgrounds, white text’ option, but that’s too far the other way!) All my Eudora emails arrive in a lovely shade of cornflower blue.

For me white is too bright, black is too dark, and grey is too… um… (trying to be polite as it’s just struck me that a lot of my favourite sites use white and grey.

My favourite Firefox ‘skin’ or theme so far is CloudGnome. But I’ve just spotted another theme that somehow I missed the first time round, so don’t assume that is my final choice..

Comments for this entry (during its previous life on Blogigo):

1. Pacian wrote at Dec 9, 2007 at 11:25: Have poked around with the skins for Opera, but am actually not that bothered. On the other hand, I’ve definitely toned down the garish default colours of Windows XP.

2. Diddums wrote at Dec 10, 2007 at 00:39: I wasn’t fond of those either – pretty plastic.



I live in the UK with two cats -- Samson and Delilah.

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