Mozilla looking to redesign browser bookmarking with Dropzilla

By on October 31, 2012, 4:00 PM

Mozilla could be looking to reinvent bookmarking in Firefox as part of an ongoing effort to improve Firefox’s browsing experience. Mozilla’s Brian Groudan recently conducted a nine week research project at the request of the Firefox for Android team that questioned whether traditional bookmarks are really the best method to support revisits.  

Groudan selected 10 people to participate in his study. He sent each person a diary and asked them to keep track of various metrics over the span of three days. On the first day, he wanted users to focus on saving content. Day two was centered around revisiting content and day three dealt with bookmark deprivation.

After a follow-up interview with each participant at Mozilla headquarters, Groudan combed over the data, pulled important quotes from each person and arranged them into categories. From here he further studied the data before meeting with Mozilla’s UX design team to brainstorm several design concepts.

One of the concepts that emerged is called Dropzilla. It allows a user to drag and drop a favicon into a save for later space. This visualization allows people to tackle two tasks at once: saving bookmarks and organizing bookmarks. Think of it as a Pinterest of websites you want to revisit at a later date.

Groudan concludes his blog post by pointing out that Mozilla is uniquely positioned to deliver a save function similar to this. He never came out and said it would actually happen, however. Based on positive reader reaction, Mozilla could definitely be on to something worth looking into further.

User Comments: 11

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treeski treeski said:

Sounds great if executed well.

1 person liked this | Guest said:

I love Firefox :) these guys are so great. You don't have to deal with Apple telling you how to surf the web. You don't have google looking up your dress all day, and as opposed to IE, it actually works.

Can't wait to see this feature in action! Great job guys! Keep up the good work!

1 person liked this | psycros psycros said:

I don't ever want a grid of bookmarks..a simple drop-down list is more than sufficient and much easier to use than paging through screenloads of thumbnails. The whole touch thing is ruining desktop usability.

ET3D, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I'll be waiting to see how it turns out. My solution is to keep tons of tabs open, but since that's poorly handled (mainly because of Flash, which seems to slow everything to a crawl with many tabs open, even if they are not loaded) an alternative would be good.

Guest said:

For years I have made my own home page of bookmarks. I usually copy the graphic logo of the page and link it to the site. I have rows focused on different areas, such as, search, sports, tech, etc. I only put the sites I visit on a regular basis on this, all other stuff I just use the standard bookmarks. I've always thought it would be nice just to drag n drop these onto my page. This seems like the same type of solution. Hopefully it pans out.

tipstir tipstir, TS Ambassador, said:

Fix it or revamp it! To me it's slower than Chrome then Rockmelt which is built on Chrome browser is prefered to use with Face Book. Chrome GPU/CPU extra features are disabled by default. When enabled the Chrome browser speeds up so fast! Also if you don't need Touchscreen features enabled they should be disabled on a system that doesn't even use it! Again doing so frees up system resources in their browser.

Diane Minton Diane Minton said:

This is great I am looking forward to having a more streamlined approach!

88Jacki88 88Jacki88 said:

Kinda EXACTLY like what Springpad already does? A little late to the party Mozilla are.

Guest said:

One word: Pinterest

TJGeezer said:

Kinda EXACTLY like what Springpad already does? A little late to the party Mozilla are.

Springpad is designed for tablets but I could see this approach being useful on my desktop machine, too. I use tab grouping as the equivalent, but that amounts to keeping lots of tabs open - which uses a lot of resources. I'd try this if it were offered with Firefox.

Guest said:

This is similar to how I already use Panorama, which of course already ships with the browser. With Panorama, I can drag open tabs into separate categories to save for later. And since Firefox only loads tabs on demand after startup, they're effectively just links to webpages. Given that, it sounds like Mozilla might as well just work on improving performance of Panorama. The downside with Panorama is that it seems to bog down the browser a bit if you keep too many tabs "open" in it, but that can be worked on. They should also allow us to unload tabs either on demand or on a set schedule to help keep resource usage down. Maintaining a thumbnail for each tab also would be nice. Finally, Firefox Sync really, really needs to synchronize our Panorama layout, not just a list of opened tabs (its session manager already keeps a record of this - why not synchronize it so it can be accessed remotely?). But combine all these things, and you more or less have the same functionality that was described in this post, but with far less work on Mozilla's part.

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