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Multiple web browsers and why it's called that

Tech Talk

Modern computers have built-in web browsers, Microsoft Edge for PCs and Safari for Macs. And it's just fine to use the Edge or Safari browser to spend time on the internet. But here are some reasons for you to have another browser on your computer, too.

The people that develop websites have a pretty tough job these days. A website must work on any browser, computer, brand, or size phone or tablet. Sometimes they don't get it right, and you'll find yourself on a website that doesn't look right or might not even load on your computer. A second (or third, even) browser may solve that problem for you.

If you have an older computer, your browser might not be updating anymore, making it hard or impossible to connect to secure sites like financial institutions. Adding a browser not made by the maker of your computer could get a newer browser that's allowed to make secure connections.

And if you're doing work on your personal computer, having a second browser can keep your browsing and bookmarks separate from your work. It is also convenient if your IT department requires specific browser extensions. But, of course, the opposite is true, too. You might use browser extensions that your work's IT department doesn't allow. A separate browser solves this problem.

While most browsers allow multiple profiles, using a different browser for work is more straightforward. The IT department at work may dictate which browser you need to use.

Even if you don't use your computer for work, having more than one browser lets you use one for shopping and email and another for banking and investments.

Maybe your work requires you to use a VPN when working. If so, you can configure your work browser to use the work VPN while leaving your email and shopping browser alone.

So, how do you get another browser on your computer? First, open your existing browser, search for Chrome, Firefox, or Opera, and follow the instructions. It shouldn't take more than a couple of minutes to install the browser you chose.

Microsoft Edge was originally a rewrite of the Internet Explorer (IE) codebase. Website developers have long reviled IE because Microsoft used IE to dictate how developers could write website code. In the beginning, IE had such a huge market share (it shipped on every PC) that Microsoft's heavy-handed tactics worked. However, as Mozilla's Firefox and Google's Chrome browsers took market share away from IE, new website standards developed, and IE couldn't keep up.

Eventually, Microsoft replaced IE with Microsoft Edge. However, they still didn't play nice with others, so Microsoft gave up and rewrote the current Microsoft Edge using the Google Chromium codebase. That's why Google Chrome may have the same problem if you're using Microsoft Edge and having trouble with a particular site. Installing Firefox or Opera may fix that site for you.

Why it's called that

Did you ever wonder why the streaming company is called Roku? Or why the streaming music service is called Spotify? Here's why.

Anthony Wood founded the Roku company in 2002, releasing the first set-top box in 2006. It was the sixth company Wood had founded, and roku is the Japanese word for the number six. So, Roku.

For years, Spotify founders Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon claimed Spotify was a combination of the words "spot" and "identify." But lately, they've changed the Spotify naming story. While brainstorming for a name for their new service, Martin said something Daniel misheard as "spotify." A quick Google search showed no one else was using the word, so their service became Spotify.

Internet Explorer

Chrome and Firefox are popular web browsers.

Internet Explorer is the most popular web browser to install Chrome or Firefox.

Do you have a computer or technology question? Greg Cunningham has been providing Tehachapi with on-site PC and network services since 2007. Email Greg at [email protected].