I was very excited to hear, via Research Buzz, that Firefox has been downloaded more than 25 million times! That’s fabulous! Hopefully we’ll see it replacing Internet Explorer more and more in libraries.

Most of the library bloggers I know seem to use Firefox (or Safari), but I really haven’t seen it on library public access computers yet. I’m sure there are some libraries that have it installed, but all of the library administrators I’ve spoken to recently seemed very reluctant to switch from IE. I don’t really understand why. Yes, I know patrons hate change, but Firefox is just as easy to use as IE and practically has the same interface. It also lacks the security vulnerabilities of IE, which makes it ideal for use on computers used by patrons. It’s the best baby step a library can take into open source, and I really can’t understand why any library administrator would be opposed to installing it (other than the old “resistant to change” issue).

For you librarians who use Firefox at home, is it used in your workplace as well? How has it been received by patrons and staff? Have patrons had trouble using it? I’d love to hear some stories about libraries that are using some open source applications (Firefox, Open Office, etc.) and what their experiences have been. If you’re also interested in this subject, you should check out the Linux Librarian’s blog and website.