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#120 - 08/05/09 06:42 AM Copy/Paste in Safari vs Firefox, Camino (10.3 & 4)
bob82xrp Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Tucson
As Safari 1.3.2 has become increasingly unable to open many newer websites, often quitting in the process, I have started to use Camino 1.6.8 (I tried Firefox 2.0.0.20 but find it unbearably slow).

When I find a web page with information I am interested in keeping on my HD for offline access, I cut and paste the text and graphics into a TextEdit document rather than save the whole page as an .html document for several reasons: because I really don't want all the extraneous elements on the page, because I prefer to have the appearance of just one .rtfd file rather than an .html file and its associated folder, and because Safari doesn't save the graphics.

In Safari, cutting and pasting preserves the graphics and text formatting, including weblinks (in Panther) and some page formatting as well (in Tiger), whereas in Camino and Firefox cutting and pasting yield text only in Helvetica 12 point, losing all formatting. Does anybody know why this is? Is there some preference setting I'm missing that would allow cutting and pasting with preservation of the graphics and formatting?

TIA for any insight you can offer.


Edited by dianne (08/05/09 06:57 AM)
Edit Reason: moved from “Mac OS X Applications.”
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#153 - 08/05/09 09:07 AM Re: Copy/Paste in Safari vs Firefox, Camino (10.3 [Re: bob82xrp]
macnerd10 Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
Not a direct answer but a suggestion. If you use iCab (I guess the only browser to date) it allows you to save a page as pdf. I find it very handy. It has versions for different OS X renditions. Two years ago I paid my $25 and never looked back (except when using Microsoft Outlook Express on the web that only allows straight pdf downloads in Flock). You might like to give it a try.
http://icab.de/
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3.1 GHz 13" MacBook Pro 2015, 8 GB RAM, OS 10.11.2, Office 2011, TimeWarner Cable
2.8 GHz Xeon Mac Pro 2010, 16 GB RAM, OS 10.11.2, Office 2011, LAN

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#155 - 08/05/09 09:15 AM Re: Copy/Paste in Safari vs Firefox, Camino (10.3 [Re: bob82xrp]
joemikeb Offline
Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
Bob at some point you are going to have to bite the bullet and upgrade your systems to a more recent version of OS X in order to have full access to the internet. All of your computers will run OS X 10.5.x which will be the last version of OS X PPC Macs like yours will be able to support. If you continue to stick with Panther and even Tiger you are going to find yourself increasingly shut out of sites on the web and new applications that take advantage of newer technologies.

IMO, It is time for you to take the plunge.
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#181 - 08/05/09 10:23 AM Re: Copy/Paste in Safari vs Firefox, Camino (10.3 [Re: joemikeb]
Gregg Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Milwaukee, WI (USA)
Wow! Early Adopters Unite!

I skipped all those cats. Jumped from OS9.2.2 to Leopard when 10.5 came out. I was fine, thank-you, but it was time. A few things, very few, were not working well. They were so insignificant, I can't remember what they were!

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#216 - 08/05/09 11:30 AM Re: Copy/Paste in Safari vs Firefox, Camino (10.3 [Re: joemikeb]
bob82xrp Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Tucson
I thank everyone for their hearty endorsements of Leopard (I will upgrade at some point soon, I'm sure) and their recommendations for work-arounds. In fact, I am able to save the web pages as PDFs, though I don't care for the way it creates so many pages, and I can also save as an .html file which can then be opened in Safari offline and copy/pasted into a text file, etc.

But I was seeking to understand the mechanism of what is going on, i.e. why and/or how formatting info is prevented from being copied (or, if that is the more usual situation, why Safari allows it). I would be interested in knowing, too, if copy/paste has the same limitations with these other browsers in Leopard, if any of you care to do a quick test.


Edited by bob82xrp (08/05/09 11:34 AM)
Edit Reason: removed reference to possible mispost because I was wrong
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#228 - 08/05/09 12:45 PM Re: Copy/Paste in Safari vs Firefox, Camino (10.3 [Re: bob82xrp]
joemikeb Offline
Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
If you will permit speculation as I am not part of the Mozilla development team but I have many years experience as a software design engineer. Safari is a Cocoa (object oriented) application and therefore inherits much of its capabilities including the cut and paste from the cocoa frameworks in OS X. On the other hand, because it is derived from its Windows counterparts, Firefox is a carbon (procedural code) framework application and all of its functionalities, even those from the OS X APIs, have to be specifically written into the code. In fact for the Mozilla team to go to the cocoa frameworks would inevitably result in Firefox for Mac and Firefox for Windows becoming two totally different code bases. Camino gets around some of this because it is a hybrid with the carbon mozilla engine encapsulated in a cocoa shell giving it the OS X look and feel as well as allowing it to inherit much of the cocoa frameworks functionality.

All of this is a long winded way of saying Firefox works that way because that was this simplest way for the Mozilla team to port their code between Windows and OS X. Safari. Camino on the other hand simply inherited the more complex copy from the cocoa framework with no additional effort on the developer's part.

The reason we do not see more cocoa applications from third party developers is migrating to cocoa inevitably results in discarding virtually the entire existing carbon (procedural) code base and starting over with a clean sheet of paper. Its doable for startups focusing on the Macintosh platform but the up front investment is prohibitive for existing apps especially those that run in both the Mac and Windows environment. That is too bad because the long term development and support costs of object oriented code is less expensive in the long run.
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#377 - 08/06/09 03:57 PM Re: Copy/Paste in Safari vs Firefox, Camino (10.3 [Re: joemikeb]
bob82xrp Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Tucson
Thanks for the possible explanation. It sounds reasonable.

I'm going to do a little testing to see which applications allow preservation of formatting in copying and pasting. For example, I lose formatting when pasting text from other sources into Adobe InDesign, but when copying text from an InDesign document, formatting is preserved. Yet if I export the document as a PDF file and then copy text, I lose formatting.

When copying both to and from a Word 2004 (for Mac) document formatting is preserved.

I'm not sure what use knowing any of this will be, but I'm a "knowledge for knowledge's sake" kind of guy. Or maybe I just have too much free time!

Thanks again for your insight.
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MacBook Pro, 2.66 Ghz Intel Core i7, 4GB RAM, 500 GB HD, OSX 10.6.8

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#413 - 08/06/09 09:02 PM Re: Copy/Paste in Safari vs Firefox, Camino (10.3 [Re: joemikeb]
tacit Offline


Registered: 08/03/09
Loc: Portland, Oregon, USA
It would be possible, if they wanted to do it, for Firefox's programmers to make Firefox preserve images and formatting, even in a Carbon app or on Windows.

However, it wouldn't be easy. It's actually surprisingly difficult to figure out what has been selected on a Web page and to copy the selected section of the page to the Clipboard while retaining any of the formatting or graphics.

CSS and JavaScript make it possible to place things on the Web page next to each other that are actually nowhere near each other in the HTML code; you can have a long Web page containing many paragraphs of text, for example, and then a picture, with CSS to put the picture next to the first paragraph of text, so when you hilight the picture and the first paragraph of text you're actually hilighting two separate sections of the underlying HTML without hilighting the sections of HTML in between.

It's a real serious technical challenge to figure out what parts of a site's text and graphics are hilighted. It's easier to figure out what sections of text are hilighted, so that's what most browsers do--on the theory that when most users hilight a section of a Web page it's actually only the text they're interested in.
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