Sorry about the RSS blip earlier; that was me hitting the wrong button. After a little more delay than I had previously planned, 10.0 beta is available, the first of our "stable" releases (based on the putative Firefox ESR).
Firefox 10 is actually a really strong release. In addition to the usual gratuitous UI change(s) (this time around it's the disappearing/reappearing forward button if you are using large icons in the toolbar), there are some remarkably solid additions in this release and my personal favourite is the Inspect Element feature. You can right-click on anything and select Inspect Element, and the HTML element appears in context with its children and parents, highlighted for your visual convenience. Even cooler is that you can dynamically alter the style, turn inherited and specified properties on and off, and find it within the page source. This is much like the old and much-beloved DOM Inspector (from Firefox 2.x and previous; still in Classilla and SeaMonkey) except that it is fully integrated within the main browser and not a separate XUL component. Great work, Mozilla!
Fx10 also includes 3D CSS transforms and properties. We render these in software (son of no-OpenGL-2-in-10.4), so performance is not great, but they work and they work surprisingly well, considering. Here is a static example from MDN: notice that all the 3D objects on the page are not images, but have selectable text, because they are in fact just transformed text. The proof of the pudding is in course in the animation, though, so why not a rotating HTML5 logo? Performs pretty well, even in software rendering on the 1GHz iMac G4.
Mozilla is also including a full-screen API where, if you permit it, a web page can dynamically open itself up to full screen. Now, if you're like me, you realize that the possibilities for phishing just jumped about twelve or thirteen times, and using it for full-screen video on pretty much any Power Mac is hopeless (my quad G5 even at full tilt can't push 1920x1080 WebM video in software). But it would be nice for presentations and other kinds of remotely-hosted demonstrations, and an excellent way to fool your boss that you're working (just switch to the tab with a static screenshot of Outlook taking up the whole screen :).
Finally, Mozilla has enough confidence in AMO to make extensions default to compatible. Now your addons don't get nuked every time you upgrade, unless, of course, the server says they are incompatible or they use binary or other unstable APIs. Those of you using the QTE will notice that it didn't get disabled like every other beta did. In fact, I didn't need to update any of my addons when I started using 10.0b1 personally. Nice!
Not all was wine and roses with the port. Besides breaking my keyboard over the weekend (and I really liked that keyboard, because it works well with all of my USB Macs even in OS 9), Mozilla upgraded the WebM libvpx to 0.9.7, wrecking our custom AltiVec work. This is not all bad because 0.9.7 is multithreaded and we support that on multiprocessor Macs, so this should help performance on marginal G4s with dual CPUs, and I was able to reconstruct most of our code in the end. Report irregularities.
Continuing in the bad news-good news department, tracejit is still in 10 but we can't ship it as default: SunSpider limps to a similar speed, but Dromaeo is 15-20% slower. I can't find a specific cause for this, and frankly if I try undoing things I'm likely to break JM+TI and JM+TI is the future. So the future is now. I am sufficiently confident in the performance and stability of JM+TI for it to now be the default. If you are using JM+TM, consider disabling tracejit entirely and turning on type inference before upgrading to 10 beta. I will leave tracejit in this release and the rest of the 10.0.x stable branch releases for those people who are absolutely convinced that methodjit is wrecking their machine somehow (it's not), but you need to be aware of the performance differential relative to 9, and it will not be in 11. We landed some microoptimizations and fixes in 10, but they are relatively minor and there is not much change in the numbers. However, Ben has some ideas on how to rework branches to more effectively make use of branch prediction and not make the backend insanely overcomplicated. We also have a new contributor who is working on a fast software square root for G3 and G4. This work will land on both stable and unstable, so there will be a beta for that particular stable release when it's ready.
Finally, something Mozilla did broke the way double and triple clicks select text. I think I have a workaround for it, but it might behave ever so slightly different from usual. Report non-trivial irregularities in issue 122.
It still isn't clear how Mozilla will handle the ESR rollout. My bet is that there will be a mozilla-esr repo or some such, from which we will pull for the stable releases. I am exploring low-cost ways of getting us an online helpdesk and support area for users so that we can eliminate our dependency on SUMO. Chris has volunteered to help with support. Other volunteers are requested. The beer offer stands.
For 11, we, and by "we" I mean "me," really need a break and this is the best one (closest to 10, so likely to have no major issues) to sit out on. I will still do a changeset for debug builds, but it's going to literally be just a placeholder, and there will be no binaries. If others want to take this one for the gap, go for it. Part of what I need the time for is to migrate www.floodgap.com off the 14-year-old Apple Network Server 500 that it still runs on to the big IBM POWER6 dual-core server sitting around idle except for being the gopher server and handling Veronica-2. There should be no service downtime like our unpleasant two months "network free" this summer because I'm simply going to transparently move the IP address to the new machine. I also really need to do finishing work on Classilla 9.3.0 and TTYtter 2.0 while I still have a chance. The next scheduled unstable branch release per se will be 12. I'm still planning to do it based on mozilla-beta if for no other reason than avoiding the small amount of perpetual churn on -aurora.
In the meantime, release notes and architecture builds: