CSE498, Collaborative Design, Spring 2012
Computer Science and Engineering
Michigan State University

Firefox is a free and open source web browser that is managed by the Mozilla Corporation. As with all web browsers, Firefox provides users the ability to customize their experience by setting browser preferences such as selecting a homepage.

In the current version of Firefox, the controls for browser preferences are located within a pop-up window that is separate from the main Firefox window.

In their efforts to continually improve upon the web browsing experience, the Firefox User Experience team at Mozilla is working toward the goal of eliminating all pop-up windows. These will be replaced with in-content designs that appear within the main Firefox window, as shown at the right.

Done in collaboration with Mozilla, our in-content preferences for Firefox transition all of the Firefox preferences into a new in-content page within the browser. A new search feature enables users to easily find where to set particular preferences.

Utilizing an in-content design provides several benefits. The need for another easy-to-lose window is eliminated, and the experience of setting preferences is made identical across all devices. Users can more easily experiment with preferences since they can continue to use Firefox while setting preferences.

Our new in-content preferences utilize XHTML and XUL to define the structure and controls on the page, CSS for visual styling and element placement, and JavaScript to specify interactive functionality.