It appears that a new version of Safari is out: 3.0.4. It is still a public beta, but they did fix a few niggles from the last version. For one, tool tips now work. For another, the inline spell checking is now working. Looks like IE7 is still lagging in that area. Surprising since Microsoft Word started whole trend. However, Safari, not to be one upped by Firefox, has also seen fit to include a grammar checker. Although, it tends to error on mundane things, like titles and numbers with periods.
Features aside, the experience is getting better. It feels a bit snapper in this release. It appears they are pipelining the requests and building the page in the background as it pulls in the images. This could prove to be a good and bad depending on how bandwidth intensive the pulls are. CSS also appears to render faster and without the wackiness I’ve seen in IE7 or Firefox as it pulls in a partial page.
Overall, the interface looks the same. It is clean and responsive. There are still some minor defects in forms and such, but sites appear to render well. I haven’t put this version of Safari through its paces yet, so only time will tell how reliable it is. But for the most part, the Internet is starting to build more towards cross platform support, especially with IE7 out, and only the sites that insist on use ActiveX and DRM rich content appear to suffer.
Safari’s RSS feed is still lacking, but better then Firefox’s default. At least Firefox supports decent plug-ins. IE7’s RSS processor is still king, but Safari comes close. Safari’s search is a bit weird, missing words that are obviously in the text. It doesn’t support an RSS image and still lacks category support. The sidebar is also a bit weird in that it scrolls separate from the feed itself.
In any case, Safari is still a capable browser. It still forces you to think like Apple. You get few options, and those it does provide seem out of place. Hope you like the brushed metal look, since that is all you get. Safari still uses its own fonts, but they are pleasing once you get used to them. All in all, a worthy player and a must for cross platform developers.