Mozilla rolled out a new release of its Firefox open-source browser software, this time with a heavy emphasis on new features for developers.
Topping the list of additions is a new developer command line in the Developer Toolbar that Mozilla said provides easy keyboard control over Firefox development tools such as the debugger and page inspector. The new browser also offers support for advanced cascading style sheet features and HTML5 programming interfaces.
Firefox 16 also "unprefixes" a number of features including CSS3 animations, transitions, transforms, image values, Indexed DB, values and units.
Also new is a "reader mode" in Firefox for Android that Mozilla said makes it easier for users to view and share articles from mobile phones and tablets.
Some observers had expected Firefox 16 to include a built-in PDF reader -- that support now comes from a browser add-on -- but that was not added to the new release. Also not included in the new version were a number of anticipated bug fixes for Mac OS X Lion and Mountain Lion.
The new release comes one week after Mozilla released a preview version of Firefox for Microsoft's Windows 8 and its touch-screen user interface (previously known as "Metro" before Microsoft dropped the name because of trademark issues). The browser also supports Microsoft's traditional Windows interface.
Mozilla said it pans to continue adding features, improving performance and tightening integration with Windows 8 before the final version is released.
Microsoft is scheduled to ship Windows 8 on Oct. 26. Support for Windows 8 is widely anticipated in Firefox 18, which could launch as early as January 2013.
PUBLISHED OCT. 10, 2012