I'm back with qutebrowser

September 8, 2021

Back in August, I wrote about how I was tired of QtWebEngine and that I was switching to Firefox with Vimium to emulate a similar mouse-less workflow. Well. That didn’t last long.

It took me about a week before I was back with qutebrowser again. The Vimium addon is a good addon (for what it is), but it’s simply not good enough for me. While I could use keybindings for a lot of things, unfortunately, some basic things didn’t work at all.

My issues with Firefox

  • The addressbar in Firefox stole all the focus all the time. This forced me to move my right hand over to the mouse, and then click on any dead area on the website to be able to use the keybindings. And it gets old rather quickly when you’re forced to do this a billion times per day.
  • There’s no way to access the bookmarks via any keybindings.
  • There’s also no way to copy the website title with any keybinding.
  • The graphical user interface is a bit too overwhelming. I really like the minimal user interface with qutebrowser, it only shows you the essential elements and information, in the least distracting way possible.
  • Firefox isn’t designed to be used only with the keyboard. There’s no addon that can possibly fix that. While addons like Vimium can make it less worse, Firefox will always be a worse alternative for any serious keyboard user.

I still dislike QtWebEngine

While I still dislike QtWebEngine, the good old trusty web browser qutebrowser simply makes the interaction with the web a lot more enjoyable for me. I simply don’t need or want all the shiny bells and whistles that a ‘modern’ web browser like Firefox comes with. I find all the features and the somewhat massive graphical user interface rather distracting.

And even if I have some issues with the web engine, it does get the job done, and I guess that I can’t use anything else than qutebrowser after all these years with it now. I’m perhaps way too spoiled with the most polished Vi-like web browser out there.


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