Disruptive technology, the Firefox way

No this isn’t about Firefox taking over the world. It’s about taking over my ‘browsing experience’. 🙁

Just moments ago I was minding my bussiness perusing stuff on the internet. When I suddenly was confronted with a popup. A popup? In Firefox??? Yes a popup, pleading me to restart Firefox… No thank you, I’m not ready for a restart just yet… You are ‘disrupting’ me!

Firefox Software Update popup

I do applaude the concern at Mozilla to provide me a safe and up-to-date browser. I do think the blue/green/red ‘christmas trees’ were a little bit confusing. (If you see one in your copy of Firefox right now, I suggest you click on it.) But ‘disrupting’ a user while at work is a bit too much, IMHO. Especially when there is no further indication as to why I really need to restart my browser. Clicking the ‘details’ link does not reveal what is ‘updated’.
To cut things short: Bad user experience! How about a less intrusive way, somewhere in between a popup and a ‘christmas tree’? ‘Important update’? You and everyone else has an ‘important update’! 🙄

Update: It seems there is some confusion about the ‘christmas trees’ I was talking about. Here’s what they look like.
Firefox Update "Christmas Tree" Icon
They also come in a blue and red variant. But I’m confused as to what the colors mean. Red is propably critical. I guess.

3 thoughts on “Disruptive technology, the Firefox way”

  1. Indeed, this user experience is less than ideal, and perhaps a >browsermessage/< would have been better. It’s on the “to look at list” for Firefox 2.0. Thanks for the suggestion.

  2. You’re welcome. 🙂

    If I may elaborate. The updates are ‘pushed’ automatically these days. So they are automatically installed if I close and subsequently re-open Firefox. So a notice isn’t even a necessity, in most cases.

    Although it’s nice to tell an end-user his/her browser has been updated. (No one I know keeps their browser open for more than 24 hours.) So maybe a ‘small’ bar like the ones you get when installing an extension from a not-yet-trusted site should do the trick.
    Like so:
    “Firefox will be updated next time you restart.” [Restart Now] [Details] [x]

  3. Maybe [Restart Now] should spell [Restart Firefox Now]. As people don’t want to restart their system.

    And the [x] closes the warning and lets users get on with their business. The update will be installed within the expected 24 hours.

    [Details] should go to a page/new tab explaining what the update is and what the notice means… and how to disable automatic updates (some people might).

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