Developers today more often then not require multiple tools to build for desktop and mobile web applications. It's a challenge that Mozilla is aiming to solve with a new cross-platform web development add-on. The new Firefox Tools Adaptor will now enable a developer to leverage the developer tools in Firefox for applications that will run on multiple platforms. The new plugin extends the reach of Firefox's developers tools beyond the Firefox browser for the desktop and Android, to apps that will run on Chrome as well as Safari in IOS.
"Nothing can replace on-device testing, but developer tools on devices have been cumbersome and vendor-specific," Mozilla developers wrote in a blog post. "Cross-platform development involved learning and switching between all the different browsers developer tools."
Currently the Firefox Tools Adaptor is in the Firefox Nightly release development channel which the bleeding edge of Firefox development.
The most recent stable release of Firefox debuted in early September with the Firefox 32 browser. Firefox 33 is currently in Beta and is expected to bring a host of new features when it become generally available in October.
Among the new features that are expected to land in Firefox 33 is an improved search engine capability as part of he location bar. According to Mozilla, the new search capability will bring in results as much as five seconds faster on average.
Session restoration capabilities also get a boost with improved reliability. The improved reliability comes from enhancement that lower the risk of the sessionstore.js file, which stores the user's session information from being corrupted.
Firefox's alpha channel, which is known as Aurora, represents features that will likely be included in Firefox 34, set to debut by the end of 2014. Among the big new features in Aurora is the WebIDE feature that had been in the Firefox Nightly development branch for the last several months. With WebIDE, an Integrated Development Environment (IDE) is being included directly with Firefox for developer use.
Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at Datamation and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist ##
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