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Adrian Sandu
Adrian Sandu

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Lighthouse 8.0, Stack Overflow acquired, Firefox 89, and Polypane 6.1 | Front End News #032

NOTE: This is issue #032 of my newsletter, which went live on Monday, June 7th. If you find this information useful and interesting and you want to receive future issues as they are published, ahead of everyone else, I invite you to join the subscriber list at

We had a string of (fairly) quiet weeks recently, but that's over for now. Big things are happening in the dev industry, and here are the most recent ones.

Lighthouse users, rejoice! Version 8 is here and you can already use it with PageSpeed Insight. And Stack Overflow is being acquired for $1.8bn by Prosus NV, a Netherlands-based consumer internet conglomerate.

On the browser scene, Firefox rolled out update 89, and Polypane released version 6.1. We also get a preview of things to come in Chrome 92, both in the Developer Tools and under the hood.

The major software releases of the week are Node v16.3.0 and Electron 13.0.0

Lighthouse 8.0

Lighthouse gets a major upgrade with version 8. This update has already been integrated with PageSpeed Insight and will be available to Chrome users starting with version 93.

There are changes in the way the scores are calculated. The Performance score has new weights, with more importance given to Total Blocking Time (TBT) and Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS). The TBT and First Contentful Paint (FCP) score curves have been updated. And the CLS score is using the new definition.

Programmatic users need to pay attention to the breaking changes. You can find that (and more) in the official release notes.

Stack Overflow acquired for $1.8bn by Prosus

Every developer must have used StackOverflow at least once during their career. It is the go-to place for getting help whenever your code is causing you trouble. But will things change?

The Register reports that Prosus NV, a Netherlands-based consumer internet conglomerate, plans to acquire Stack Overflow for $1.8bn. The deal must go through regulatory approval and it's scheduled to close before the end of the year.

"There are currently no plans to change how Stack Overflow operates," a spokesperson for Prosus said in an email to The Register. The article below contains more declarations and some speculations on the future of the platform.

Browser news


Interesting things are coming for developers in Chrome 92. Top of them is the new CSS Grid Inspector tool. You can now view the order of source elements on the screen, helping you out when checking accessibility. You can view Cross-origin resource sharing (CORS) errors in the Issues tab. And the Lighthouse panel will be powered by version 7.5. As I mentioned above, we need to wait for Chrome 93 to use Lighthouse 8 in the dev tools.

There are more things hidden under the hood of Chrome 92. Using the File Handling API you can now declare web apps as file handlers. The V8 engine will be running version 9.2. The list goes on and you can find all the details in the blog post linked below.


Firefox users received update 89 this last week. And the first thing they will notice will be the updated interface. Of course, there's more than that included, such as support for the forced-colors media feature. better control for displayed fonts, or being able to use the await keyword outside of async functions. Be sure to check the release notes for more details.


We're wrapping up the browser news section with the release of Polypane 6.1. This update brings two new debug tools. The readability tool will estimate how easy is to read each sentence on your page. And the Content Chaos tool will randomly modify the amount of content of each text node, to see how well your layout reacts to content changes. There is also a new interaction sync engine, and a lot more. All of this is available in the blog post below.

Software updates and Releases

Wrapping things up

Have a great and productive week, keep yourselves safe, and I will see you next time!

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