Firefox, Web Development plugins and Joe public – part 2

In part one of this post, I look at the Web Developers Toolbar, an essential firefox addon.

This time round, I think it’s worth a look at Firebug. Firebug is aimed more at what I would call ‘realtime’ debugging – it has a definite emphasis on Javascript, DOM manipulation etc.

For Mr/Mrs Joe Public, all this is beyond the realms of comprehension, but it does have one particularly useful function which shows the time used to get/parse the various files and elements which make up the page.

Firebug Screen

In this screenshot you can see the various CSS files, JS files, and the loading times associated. At the very least, this can help show a client where the issues in a page are, and why any page may be slow loading.

It also helps demonstrate what happens when you load an enormous image, and then resize it in the browser (rather than using Photoshop’s Save for Web command).