Mozilla Still Good After 32 Days
Saturday July 27th, 2002
Timothy Dyck began using Mozilla about a month ago and he hasn't looked back since. In an opinion piece, the eWEEK journalist describes his favourite features and outlines some improvements he'd like to see in future versions.
#19 Re: Re: Re: What does mozilla.org think of this?
Monday July 29th, 2002 12:17 AM
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"a large number of mozilla developers, particularly those donating their services, were end-users first."
This is a fine and dandy statement but it's wrong. They were more than end-users. Trying to attact and support end-users means people, the overwhelming majority of whom will never contribute anything significant back to the project. People (like me) who were not developers and came to the Mozilla projects from using and reporting bugs on Mozilla were never classic browser application end-users. There are hundreds of millions of people on-line right now and the number of people with any interest in contributing to open source is only a fraction of a percent of those hundreds of millions of end-users. Trying to attract the hundreds of millions in order to get the handful who will contribute anything significant to Mozilla is a silly approach that will be a waste of more resources than it gains.
"actively discouraging use by the "average" internet citizen, we risk alienating potential developers along with discouraging current developers who are aiding the project for personal use. "
Actively recruiting the "average" internet citizen (if that is a synonym for the average "end-user") is silly. My mom is the average internet citezen and with all the time I spend answering her Mozilla questions, she already costs the project considerably more than she returns to it. If you honestly believe that the best way to target and attract developers is to seek millions of "average interenet citizens" then you're just naieve.
"mozilla will be used by non-developers as long as it remains an open source project - this is regardless of whether there is active marketing, packaging, and support."
The people with enough interst to seek it out on their own (without mozilla.org and the Mozilla community targeting them) will find it and they will be more likely to contribute something back than those you "sell" mozilla to. Chasing end-users will cost more than it gains. Chasing developers and those with an interest in participating in open-source development is an entirely different matter and I'm happy to support most efforts that target potential contributors but targeting the general end-user is a waste of resources. Let the companies with the resources and the experience in that area do that work.