Update on Mozilla 0.9.4 and mozilla.org
Wednesday September 5th, 2001
We asked Asa Dotzler of mozilla.org to update us on the general state of Mozilla, and of mozilla.org. Click the Full Article link to read his reply.
#1 "a major vendor"?
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 2:22 AM
A major vendor? Some other vendor than Netscape? Nokia perhaps? Does anyone have any clues?
#2 Re: "a major vendor"?
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 4:48 AM
Or mayhap more than one, even?
#8 And the vendor is...
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 9:22 AM
OEone I bet. They've got a big product launch coming up, a product that uses Mozilla in a BIG way, and I'm betting they're going to base their gold code on 0.9.4.
NS did 0.9.2.1, maybe we'll see a 0.9.4.1 in a month or two. :)
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 6:56 AM
#7 Re: "a major vendor"?
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 9:01 AM
I believe the major vendor is Netscape. As I understand it, Netscape are basing their Netbusiness (enterprise) version of Netscape 6.1 (codenamed eMojo) on 0.9.4. I think the reason that the two versions of 6.1 were not released at the same time is because some LDAP stuff was not ready for initial 6.1 release.
Of course, this could all be completely wrong.
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 6:13 AM
America Online to put in v7, replacing IE (fingers crossed, fingers crossed, fingers crossed...:)
#9 Not 7, maybe for 8... On Win32 at least...
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 9:27 AM
It won't make it into AOL 7 for Win32 platforms. With the deal they struck with MS to get placement in XP forces them to keep IE as their core on Win32. Now, if they debut a version of OAL 7 for Linux or another non-MS OS, they'll undoubtedly use Mozilla. There is already a version of AOL for Linux using Mozilla in their TouchPad.
#15 Re: Not 7, maybe for 8... On Win32 at least...
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 1:15 PM
"With the deal they struck with MS to get placement in XP forces them to keep IE as their core on Win32."
I thought that the talks between AOL and Microsoft broke down so AOL will not be included with Windows XP (unless AOL makes deals with OEMs).
#46 Re: Re: Not 7, maybe for 8... On Win32 at least...
Thursday September 6th, 2001 3:38 PM
I belive you are correct, there will be no AOL included in XP.
I would not expect Netscape 6.1 integration with version 7. The development for AOL 7 started before Netscape 6.1 was ready and 6.0 was not an option. Perhaps version 8.
Now, having said that, AOL may decide to include Netscape 6.1 on all those AOL CD's that ship. Would be interesting if they did. The ability to read AOL mail in a real mail program I think is very attractive.
#50 You're right...
Thursday September 6th, 2001 5:12 PM
Talks broke down and MS and AOL never came to an agreement. I was thinking of the fact that MS capitulated to OEMs about allowing them to "change the desktop icons" and then AOL leaping in to get their client preloaded. :)
#5 So MozillaQuest is right...?
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 8:27 AM
They did let Mitchell Baker go. Who is gonna lead the project now?
#6 Read the message
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 8:35 AM
Did you actually read Mitchell's message?
As far as we are concerned, Mitchell still heads the project until she says otherwise.
mozilla.org != Netscape, and this is more evidence of that.
#12 I did read it.
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 12:29 PM
Nowhere did he say that he is staying on.
No position = no money = someone has got to pay the mortgage = baker is gone.
#14 Re: I did read it.
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 1:12 PM
"Nowhere did he say that he is staying on.
Nowhere did she say that she was changing her sex either. :-)
#20 Re: I did read it.
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 8:32 PM
It's just as invalid to assume she'll be leaving as it is to assume she'll be staying - she can continue to lead mozilla.org if she desires, or hand the reins over to one of the other drivers and stay on in a reduced capacity. Moz is a /volunteer/ effort, after all, despite it receiving support from Netscape.
#21 Re: Re: I did read it.
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 9:25 PM
>>Moz is a /volunteer/ effort, after all, despite it receiving support from Netscape<<
Ah, no, it is not. When 90% of developers are getting paid for coding mozilla - I don't call that a volunteer effort. Let's not kid ourselves.
#23 Yeah, it is.
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 10:41 PM
I'm not gettong paid, and neither are "90%" of the coders. Themajority of people are NOT getting paid.
#24 90% a bit optimistic there
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 11:29 PM
I think 90% is a bit more than optimistic. The vast majority of bug resolutions in mozilla are done by people in Netscape's employ. Of those contributors who are not Netscape employees, a lot of them are from Sun or other concerned software companies. It's fun to stand on a soapbox and proclaim independence from Netscape, but I think that one insults Netscape and its vast contributions by dismissing it thusly.
PS: please prove me wrong
#25 I meant....
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 11:32 PM
"It's fun to stand on a soapbox and proclaim independence from Netscape, but I think that one insults Netscape and its vast contributions by dismissing it thusly."
I really meant that it insults the Netscape employees by dismissing their company and their jobs.
#27 Re: 90% a bit optimistic there
Thursday September 6th, 2001 4:34 AM
I think you incorrectly read his post. He did not say that 90% of the coders are unpaid; he said (paraphrasing) that it was not true that 90% of the coders were being paid. Note that he used quotes around the "90%" which would indicate that he was referring to the previous post's claim that 90% of the coders were getting paid.
I am not sure how many Mozilla developers are being paid to work on Mozilla code, but I would be very very very surprised to learn that only one out of ten was volunteering their time.
#29 Re: Re: 90% a bit optimistic there
Thursday September 6th, 2001 6:36 AM
It's quite possible that over half of the developers aren't getting paid to work on Mozilla, but by necessity that will limit their time and contributions to the project because most of them still need to have real jobs (or school, etc). Certainly the vast majority of bug fixes are submitted by contributors who clearly _are_ being paid to work on it, which will naturally allow them to spend more time on the project. I don't see any contradiction here, I don't think rgelb thought this through very well. However his main point that most of the actual volume of contributions come from paid employees still stands.
Thursday September 6th, 2001 11:49 AM
YEs, I wasn't sayign 90% for myself, but was quoting the other gent, and saying that his number of 90% was wrong. From my experience with the project over the past 20 months, I'd say about 40% of the contributors are paid employees.
#26 Re: I did read it.
Thursday September 6th, 2001 2:40 AM
I have to disagree with this. It is very possible that Mitchell will not be as active as before, but _nowhere_ did she say that she was gonna leave mozilla.org. Like MozillaQuest pointed out (the only thing I more or less appreciated in their article), there are as many netscape _community members_ as there are non-netscape _community members_. A community member is either a developer, an evangelist, a QA, a tester, etc... It is true that a majority of the developers are from Netscape, but as far as I know, Mitchell is not a developer, so there is no reason she couldn't do like at least 100 other contributors that aren't paid and work on Mozilla.
The above text is my opinion and my opinion only.
#28 Your reading comprehension skills suck
Thursday September 6th, 2001 4:48 AM
She most certainly did say that she was staying on. Did you not see the second paragraph?
"I remain committed to the Mozilla project and to contributing in whatever ways I can."
If that direct statement was not enough for you, note also that throughout the rest of the article, she used the words "we" and "our" when talking about the Mozilla project.
Last but not least, her closing statement was as follows:
"The coming year brings enormous potential for Mozilla. Let's make it happen."
So not only does she see Mozilla doing well in the coming year, but she also includes herself as one of the people who is going to continue to work to make it happen.
#30 Re: Your reading comprehension skills suck
Thursday September 6th, 2001 11:02 AM
Why doesn't someone with access to her just ask?
#17 Re: So MozillaQuest is right...?
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 1:40 PM
Mitchell posted a message http://groups.google.com/groups?hl=en&safe=off&frame=right&th=9b6182c6b6719425&seekm=3B8D621F.3030903%40badubadu.com to the netscape.public.mozilla.general newsgroup saying that she had been laid off. And no tech news sites (that I know of) picked it up. In fact, no-one seemed to notice. Then a certain Mozilla 'news' site that will remain unnamed reported it and suddenly Slashdot notices and links to the article (which featured the usual factual inaccuracies and distortions), driving traffic to the site. Alas, it seems there was not enough traffic to bring down its servers, which is more than I can say for Bugzilla which appears to be well and truly Slashdotted.
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 11:12 AM
So how deep are the layoffs on the Mozilla project?
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 12:27 PM
Mozilla hasn't laid off anyone. ome people who were NEtscape employees assigned to work on Mozilla have been laid off from Netscape, but they're still a part of the lizard until they choose to leave, or are driven to tears due to constant mocking and poking.
#16 Thats the thing I waited for
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 1:27 PM
Now, what happens to: end users getting kicked of mozilla channel on irc.mozilla.org
MS IE taking over the world, took already
Thank you geeks, your geek crap REAL worked...
Oh my god they killed Netscape! Those geeks!
#18 Cause for Concern
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 1:57 PM
First off, Mitchell Baker has just lost her job so commiserations. Its never an easy time so lets hope Mitchell has success in her next move. Hopefully this will see her remain as the key Lizard Wrangler...
Second, I am concerned for the project if it turns out a lot of Netscape engineers have gone from paid emplyment on Mozilla. The lizard needs all hands on deck...
Third, laying off the head of an organisation is a potentially big, big statement about AOL's continued commitment to Mozilla. Make no mistake - if AOL pulled out of Mozilla.org, the results would be catastrphic.
I can only hope this is all irrelevant.
Once again - good luck Mitchell for the future
#19 Mozilla.org: solid
Wednesday September 5th, 2001 3:21 PM
Despite the unfortunate departure of Mitchell Baker from Netscape, it is apparent that Mozilla.org remains solid as evinced by the steady progress of this anticipated release. It is also evident that Netscape remains firmly behind the open source project.
The greatest testament to any person's leadership, and specifically of Mitchell's, is that their team continues to pursue its goals and share the vision even in the absence of its valued leader.
Mozilla is something worth working, sweating and fighting for. It's a great technology built and supported by a great team.
I'm a big fan. Keep up the good work.
#32 The Register Story
Thursday September 6th, 2001 12:12 PM
This story is fully up to MozillaQuest standards. The author has misunderstood Asa Dotzler's reference to a major vendor taking over the 0.9.4 branch (preparatory to releasing a product based on that branch) as a promise that a major vendor will take over Mozilla entirely. Shame, as I usually like The Register and even the journalist in question.
#33 Re: The Register Story
Thursday September 6th, 2001 1:02 PM
Do we know that's not what he meant?
#35 Re: Re: The Register Story
Thursday September 6th, 2001 1:17 PM
He said the branch was being taken over.
"When Mozilla is finished with THE BRANCH ... a major vendor will take over and maintain THAT BRANCH working toward a COMMERCIAL RELEASE." [my emphases].
#36 Re: Re: Re: The Register Story
Thursday September 6th, 2001 1:20 PM
That seems like a likely interpretation, but since both Asa and AOL representatives have refused to comment, it's hard to say.
With AOL laying off the head of the project, and an unspecified number of others, it seems equally plausible to wonder whether AOL will continue to support Mozilla at all in the long term.
#39 Netscape 6.5 for Dummies
Thursday September 6th, 2001 1:48 PM
<quote>With AOL laying off the head of the project, and an unspecified number of others, it seems equally plausible to wonder whether AOL will continue to support Mozilla at all in the long term.</quote>
That would perhaps be an understandable speculation, until AOL makes it clear that they are still committed; but The Reg is reporting it as a foregone conclusion.
#40 Sorry about the subject line there . . .
Thursday September 6th, 2001 1:50 PM
It's a leftover from maybe three months ago ... forms handling still seems to have a few little bugs.
#41 Re: Netscape 6.5 for Dummies
Thursday September 6th, 2001 2:02 PM
>> That would perhaps be an understandable speculation, until AOL makes it clear that they are still committed; but The Reg is reporting it as a foregone conclusion. <<
True, and that's not good journalism -- but what does you expect from the Register?
I'm just pointing out that MozillaZine posters are assuming the opposite as a foregone conclusion, which is just as much jumping to conclusions as the Register article was.
In fact, I find the silence on the questions of outside vendor support and size of layoffs rather ominous. If AOL was committing to supporting Mozilla and there were not deep layoffs, then I think MozillaZine would be jumping on that and telling us all the good news. Instead, there is an information blackout from people like Asa who presumably know the answers to these questions. Given the human proclivity for speculation, it's hard not to assume the worst in these circumstances.
#55 Re: Re: Netscape 6.5 for Dummies
Thursday September 6th, 2001 8:43 PM
>>Instead, there is an information blackout from people like Asa who presumably know the answers to these questions.
Excuse the f**k out of me for spending the last couple of days busting my a** to get a MOZILLA MILESTONE (0.9.4) out the d**n door.
When you offer to take some of my workload (making Mozilla better) then I'll try to find the time to jump right to it and answer your silly speculations.
#56 Someone needs a hug! ;) N/T
Thursday September 6th, 2001 11:08 PM
Someone needs a hug! ;) N/T
#60 Re: Re: Re: Netscape 6.5 for Dummies
Friday September 7th, 2001 9:47 PM
You have issues.
#42 Re: The Reg
Thursday September 6th, 2001 2:03 PM
Oooooh wow, I think that little red 'updated' is my fault. I emailed earlier today to point out that the '/' in AOL/TW is a slash, and not a backslash as the article originally said, and that the KDE folks probably wouldn't be pleased to hear that Konquerer is based on Moz. Unfortunately, of course, it appears that during the update he introduced that much worse mistake about some company taking over. Oh well, that's where you get when you try to evangelise! ;-) ;-)
#44 Re: Re: The Reg
Thursday September 6th, 2001 2:58 PM
From the sounds of it, you're the "Mozilla folk" the article mentions. It's all your fault! ;-)
Actually, I've always thought it was 'AOL Time Warner', no slashes involved. That would make the abbreviation AOLTW or maybe just ATW. Or maybe not.
I sent my response to the article at just past 8 o'clock this evening, so I doubt we'll see a correction until tomorrow (if we do at all).
#48 Re: Re: The Reg
Thursday September 6th, 2001 4:04 PM
<chuckle> ....or it might have been my email this morning pointing him at Mitchell's posting. I also sent one noting the differences between a vendor taking over the branch, and a vendor taking over Mozilla, but haven't seen a change from that one yet.
#54 Re: Re: Re: Re: The Register Story
Thursday September 6th, 2001 8:39 PM
I refused to comment on what? That a vendor will do what Netscape did with 0.9.2 and use a Mozilla Milestone branch as a basepoint from which to base a commercial release? I'm quite confused. By the way, the Mozilla 0.9.5 trunk is open for Mozilla development on the road to a Mozilla 0.9.5 Milestone which will be followed by another Mozilla Milestone (usually about every 5 to 6 weeks) and that will be followed by more Mozilla development and more Mozilla Milestones.
#59 Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The Register Story
Friday September 7th, 2001 11:15 AM
Thank you for clarifying your comment on vendors and branches. The original comment was unclear and it confused people both here and elsewhere.
I am confused why you would say you didn't have time to post, when you have been quite active in the other thread currently going on here as well as on Slashdot.
How deep were the layoffs of AOL employees working on Mozilla? Were there others, or was it just Mitchell Baker? If others, how many? Is there a reason you refuse to comment on this issue?
#61 Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The Register Story
Friday September 7th, 2001 10:38 PM
>>I am confused why you would say you didn't have time to post, when you have been quite active in the other thread currently going on here as well as on Slashdot.
I guess I missed a day at mozillaZine. It must be some conspiracy. It couldn't possibly be because I was busy with actual work.
#62 Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The Register Story
Saturday September 8th, 2001 4:00 PM
I've suggested no conspiracy and I don't appreciate your implication that I did.
However, you are continuing to evade the question.
#63 Re: The Register Story
Saturday September 8th, 2001 4:16 PM
Relax, Asa being sarcastic, and I know I would if I was stressed out and pulling my hair. Although more direct answers would be nice too :)
Alex, the gerbil NewZilla one who hasn't posted here in forever because he's been so busy all summer http://www.gerbilbox.com/newzilla/
#65 Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The Register Story
Tuesday September 11th, 2001 10:22 AM
If you actually think Asa was making such an implication then you truly are an idiot.
Regardless, why should Asa, or anyone else, care if you were offended by any of his posts? You obviously do not care who you insult or offend with your posts.
#64 Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The Register Story
Monday September 10th, 2001 9:15 PM
sorry, lost track of this one. too much new news on mozillZine to keep up with it all. mitchell baker was the only person paid by Netscape to work as part of email@example.com that was laid off. I'm not sure about how many others were laid off but the Mozilla project still has hundreds of Netscape employees working on it. If you're interested in following how many people Netscape pays to work on mozilla you can keep an eye on requests for new CVS accounts for Netscape employees (they go through the same process as anyone else contributing to Mozilla) in Bugzilla (oh, did I mention that we track more than just bugs in Bugzilla?). You could also watch checkins by people with %netscape.com cvs accounts or watch bugs being resolved as Fixed by people with @netscape.com Bugzilla accounts. it's all very open and public and you don't need me to stop doing what I'm doing to run a bunch of queries for you.
#37 You quoted the wrong article:
Thursday September 6th, 2001 1:40 PM
"Baker announced the news in this Usenet posting, and MozillaZine reports a "major vendor" is likely to step in and pick up sponsorship of the AOL-TW work."
Further down he writes:
"Whether Mozilla - ...[text about Mozilla tech in other products]... - will miss AOL is a good question."
Obviously he thinks AOL is no longer doing anything in relation to Mozilla. He is in error.
#38 No I didn't [was Re: You quoted the wrong article]
Thursday September 6th, 2001 1:46 PM
I don't think you get the point: I said that The Register got their facts wrong and misinterpreted AD's article; Strauss asked if The Register's wasn't in fact the correct interpretation of AD's article, and I demonstrated that AD's article couldn't possibly have meant what The Register is suggesting he meant. So, no, *I* didn't quote the wrong article, I quoted AD to prove that The Register (in the passages you're quoting) was wrong.
Thursday September 6th, 2001 5:19 PM
Ooooh, I thought you were quoting The Reg saying that a vendor was "taking over the branch." Sorry 'bout that. :)
But as it is, the vendor (probably OEone if my guess is right) isn't going to "take over the branch", they're going to take a copy of the branch and build their own product on it, and then probably wind up creating a 0.9.4.1 branch.
#58 Re: Oooohhhhhhhhhh......
Friday September 7th, 2001 9:15 AM
Right. The key is that what AD put up made perfect sense [don't know the man, don't feel comfortable using his first name], and is merely business as usual, but certain, well, vultures, have decided to creatively misunderstand it so they can have the doom they've been predicting..
#34 Re: The Register Story
Thursday September 6th, 2001 1:04 PM
I've sent the reporter a polite email pointing out that the article was, well, rubbish really. Hopefully they'll correct it.
#57 Re: Re: The Register Story
Friday September 7th, 2001 5:37 AM
Isn'T that the time to make http://www.theregisterregister.com or http://www.newsnews.com and joke with their "lame" design? Yeap, "clueless" News.com made that story too, be happy, they didn't link to mozillaquest "crap".
I told facts whole web says but doesn't care to join irc, I was a) accused (!) to be Mozillaquest member b) accused to be MS worker
The real interesting issue is, I am neither of these and one of the most IE haters on whole world.
An end note, why should I bother to read this pravda of old USSR like "magazine"? You should change the name from "magazine" to "fanzine".
#43 CNET's take...
Thursday September 6th, 2001 2:48 PM
While there, make sure you check out the Steve Ballmer video link at the bottom. :)
#45 Re: CNET's take...
Thursday September 6th, 2001 2:59 PM
The suggestions of a power struggle were interesting. If Mitchell Baker is staying as Chief Lizard Wrangler, it may piss Netscape off a lot...
#49 Re: CNET's take...
Thursday September 6th, 2001 4:36 PM
"Mozilla's lateness could hardly have endeared Baker to her superiors at AOL," - Hate to say it but if Mitchell was sacked for the browser being late then they coulda done it a year ago...
"... a power struggle between Netscape executives and Mozilla engineers over the direction of user-interface development, the pace of development, and the mission of Mozilla as a whole." - So, I am I right in thinking that AOL/Netscape have decided XUL is a waste of time? Bit bloody late in the day if they have. I just bought the Essential XUL Programming book. :)
Balmer - glad I don't do his laundry...
#53 In related news...
Thursday September 6th, 2001 5:57 PM
Ford has fired Frank Hendricks, one of the leaders of the Ford Pinto product group. Jaques Nasser was quoted as, "Well, after reviewing sales figured for the Pinto, we felt the project was lagging, and have cut the project. The fact that we haven't made Pintos in 20 years, and Frank has gone on to lead other very successful projects at Ford are totally irrelevant."
Come on, they're gonna fire her for a decision made almost 3 years ago? That doesn't make sense.
#47 but WHY?
Thursday September 6th, 2001 3:58 PM
You all argue about the meaning behind Mitchell's departure, but no one is sure WHY she was "laid off." To quote Netscape: "This was part of the overall restructuring and is not reflective of any sort of policy change at Netscape with regard to Mozilla," said Netscape representative Catherine Corre. "Netscape is fully supportive of the current Mozilla organization, projects and philosophy."
But there are "sources" saying she was fired, with a convenient spin of layed-off. Does anyone know what department Mitchell was in, whether there were other layoffs there?
Could be that her position was eliminated because Netscape didn't want to spend 100K a year to lead this group. They knew she was willing to do it for free.
#52 Re: but WHY?
Thursday September 6th, 2001 5:29 PM
In modern corporate America, people usually ARE "laid off" when they're fired. That's how it works, unless that actual person it not wanted, so that companies can avoid paying unemployment for the person.
As to WHY, aside from AOL wanting to spread the layoffs around to avoid crippling any single department (as though some parts of AOL/TW could be MORE crippled and inefficiant), I couldn't say why her. Probably also related to when she was hired or some such reason.
"Oh, you were hired on a tusday with an odd number in the date, we're going to have to let you go. Security will escort you from here, and they'll remove your letter opener and stapler before you clean out your desk."