Site Suggestions

Tuesday January 8th, 2002

A few of you have asked for us to post a news item taking your suggestions for the site, so here it is. Tell us all your ideas for what we can do to improve the site. Anything you want we'll think about, but try to keep it realistic.

Just to keep you updated, one of the things we're planning on working on is getting the ChromeZone up again, if we can find some volunteer editors to help organize themes. If you're interested, please email me and I'll get back to you sometime this week.

UPDATE! Right now we're working on dumping all the tables and other old HTML within the site to both show off Mozilla's skills, and to get our file sizes smaller. If you're using Communicator to view the site, you'll notice everything looking pretty ugly, thanks to the poor CSS support it offers. If you're using IE, it'll look a bit better, but thanks to IE's lacking CSS2 support, the sidebar will show up incorrectly. We've completely redone the homepage and talkback code, and we'll be working on the forums next.

UPDATE 2! We discovered Google's great "Search Site" feature, and have added it. Right now it has most areas of the site indexed except news item talkback pages. It will start indexing talkback today, and will hopefully add all of the old items, in addition to picking up the new ones.

UPDATE 3! We've been working hard to get as many of your suggestions as possible implemented, and we encourage you to continue the feedback. You can check this article's responses for what items we have fixed, or are working on.

#159 Let's take a closer look at history.

by ipottinger

Tuesday January 15th, 2002 11:09 AM

You are replying to this message

"Windows 95 OSR2 from 11/96 all the way until the release of Windows 98 in the summer of 1998... it hardly made a dent in market share compared to NS usage."

No one is arguing that a poor product will gain market share. The argument is that a better produce, in and of itself, might not be enough to displace a more established (read: bundled), though inferior product! History is littered with the dead carcasses of "better produced." It is hard to argue against this presumption.

"Then Windows98 came about with IE4. Sure, some just used it because it was there... many used it because they liked it better... many still, though, continued using Netscape Communicator."

People will use what they are given despite better alternatives. Thus if your first experience was with Netscape, you tended to continue to download it. If, however, your first experience was with (the bundled) IE, you tended to continue to use it. This period of decline for Netscape only documented the growing number of first-time internet users whose first experience was with (the bundled) IE.

"It was eventually IE5 that nailed the coffin into Netscape4 since NS4 was going absolutely nowhere. That *negative* reality is due to the fact that NS was once a browser that cost money... and M$ giving theirs away killed that revenue stream... thereby crippling NS's ability to continue working as a free enterprise and continue its browser development. It wasn't the bundled browser, in and of itself, that directly killed NS usage... it was a free browser that kept getting better and better whilst the NS4 was going no where."

The only disagreement here is to what extent the bundling of the browser played in the decline of Netscape's market share. I (and the US judicial system) believe that its role was substancial enough to be considered an abuse of Microsoft's monopoly position in the OS market. If you care to argue against these court finding, I interesting in listening.

"Now, lets say that we get the current Mozilla and magically fix any and all known 30,000+ bugs in it (or whatever the number is). Are you telling me that when it becomes a truly competitive alternative that it will stay bogged down in the low market share that it has now because IE is bundled with Windows? Irregardless of the marketing might of AOL, positive reviews, bundling deals, word of mouth, etc...??? I don't think so."

Not quite! Only the "marketing might of AOL" to ensure Mozilla and its derivatives are *bundled* on enough systems will counteract the effects of Windows/IE bundling. If I had to bet on a race between a free-stable-competitive browser and a free-stable-competitive-*established* browser, I'd bet on the latter!

Mozilla now stands in the shoes of IE3.0 filled in 11/96. Mozilla will have to do everything that IE did, including being bundled, if it wants to gain market share.