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Firefox 3 speaks Afrikaans

The long-awaited Firefox 3 browser has been released and is already receiving rave reviews from users around the globe. In South Africa, Firefox 3 is significant in that for the first time ever in a major release of the browser, an Afrikaans version is available for download from day one.

The work of translating Firefox 3 into Afrikaans was driven by local organisation Translate.org.za. Organisation founder, Dwayne Bailey, says that releasing an Afrikaans version of the browser on the same day as the primary release is "the first time for a major official release. Translate.org.za and various volunteers have worked hard to make this happen."

Bailey says that over the life of Firefox 3 the organisation hopes to "make most of the South African languages official releases." Translate.org.za has previously translated a range of open source software into local languages including translating the OpenOffice.org suite into all official South African languages.

Firefox 3 is receiving positive reviews for a number of its capabilities, most notably its significantly improved speed. Firefox 3 is built on the new Gecko 1.9 engine which uses less memory than previous releases and renders pages significantly faster.

Firefox 3 also has a number of improved security features including better malware protection. Firefox 3's one-click site ID information makes it easy for users to verify that a site is what it claims to be.

The user interface for Firefox 3 has been overhauled with a location bar that "learns" as users surf the Internet, making it easier to find sites previously visited. Managing bookmarks and browsing history is also easier to manage than previous versions. Mozilla Firefox 3 can be run on Windows, Linux, and the Mac OS X operating systems.

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