With Apple WebCore (KHTML) quickly gaining on Gecko in the standards–compliance department, you have to wonder how quickly new WebCore browsers will pop up once the WebKit API is officially released. Gecko’s many children, wonderful and varied as they are, suffer from tremendous code bloat and have some serious performance issues. My own favorite browser, Camino, often lags on something as simple as scrolling down a page — or rendering cached pages.
If Safari is any indicator, the code is not only faster but lighter; one of the likeliest reasons for Safari’s high adoption rate (that, and unbridled fanboyism towards Apple in general… but that’s to be expected). The reason many aesthetics nerds and/or interface nerds don’t use Safari is, quite simply, it’s ugly. Never mind Apple’s (serial) abuse of the HIG, it’s just plan ugly. We’ve all heard that the Omni Group is adopting WebCore for future versions of OmniWeb, which looks very promising, but who’s going to make the Camino of WebCore? Who’s going to tackle it all with Cocoa widgets? Who’s going to make a WebCore browser that looks like it belongs on OS X? (sans brushed metal windows, thank you very much). Who indeed. Only time will tell.