Mozilla's Global Usage Share Now at 1.1 Percent
Monday December 16th, 2002
Tyrannosaurus Moz writes: "According to OneStat.com, Mozilla has achieved 1.1% usage, up 0.3% from 0.8% in September. If you count Netscape 7 as Mozilla (it is) then Mozilla-based browsers now control about 1.7% of the Web browser market." Internet Explorer is still the number one browser with a 95% usage share but Mozilla has now overtaken Opera as the third most popular browser, behind Netscape (all versions) with 3%.
#1 Only 10 more years
Monday December 16th, 2002 12:19 PM
Well at that rate (0.3% per month) Mozilla/Netscape 7+ should have a majority browser market share by about year 2012...:p
#2 Let's see
Monday December 16th, 2002 12:40 PM
Assume that the number of browser users was constant from September to the present. (I can make any assumption I want. I was an economics major. (Heh heh.))
In that case our total user base climbed from 8 units to 11 units in 3 months. That is an increase of 37.5% Applying the rule of 72, our user should should double every (3 months * 1.92) 5.76 months. To reach 50% market share, then, assuming the Internet user base is constant, we would roughly have a 70% market share in less than years years.
Obviously, I wasn't a math major, but nevertheless that is a very fast growth rate. We are rocking.
Monday December 16th, 2002 12:42 PM
Sorry, the second to the last sentence should read:
"Assuming the Internet user base is constant, we would roughly have a 70% market share in less than years years."
#31 try again?
Monday December 16th, 2002 3:45 PM
Wanna try again? :)
#32 whole thing
Monday December 16th, 2002 4:01 PM
The whole thing should read:
Assume the web browser market size remains constant. In that case our total user base climbed from 8 units to 11 units (from 0.8% of total market share to 1.1% of total market share) in 3 months. That is an increase of 37.5% in our total user base over 3 months. Applying the rule of 72, our user base should should double every (3 months * (72 / 37.5)) = 5.76 months.
Continue to assume that the Internet user base remains constant. Thus, one unit = 0.1% of the web browser market. If our rate of userbase growth remains constant, we would have roughly a 70% market share in less than years.
This may be inaccurate math. Corrections and accusations are welcome.
A 37.5% increase in the user base in 3 months is extremely fast growth. So, yes, we are rocking.
#35 Re: Not that fast
Monday December 16th, 2002 4:43 PM
A little less than one year ago, Gecko-based browsers had about 1% of the market. Now they have almost 2%. The longer term growth is closer to doubling each year. That means 4% share in 2003, 8% in 2004, 16% in 2005, 32% in 2006.
But this is assuming the exponential growth curve will continue. A more realistic expectation is that the exponential growth will turn linear some time below 50% (maybe well below 50%) and even become less than linear after that. Look at the growth of IE 6 at http://www.google.com/press/zeitgeist/zeitgeist-oct02.html for example. The growth was exponential near the end of 2001, was linear through the first half of 2002, and has been slowing down in the last half of 2002. And IE 6 usage has just recently become only 50%.
#36 well, I disagree
Monday December 16th, 2002 5:29 PM
I don't see a mention of Mozilla or Gecko on the page you listed. Even if it does, it is not the case that Google's users are necessarily randomly distributed among the Internet population, making Google's userbase an inappropriate sample of the Internet as a whole.
Even if we ignore that issue, the rate of the last three months of growth of Mozilla's userbase is more likely to be representative of future growth than the rate of the past year. During the last 12 months, a lot has happened. Notably, the releases of Mozilla 1.0 and Netscape 7.0 have occurred. These are important events that would be inappropriately played down by any current data with a period of one year.
I'm not at all convinced that Mozilla's growth will start to become linear. IE's growth (if you put all versions of IE together) never became linear until it captured 90%+ of the market. Why should our growth be different?
#37 Re: IE's growth
Monday December 16th, 2002 5:39 PM
> IE's growth (if you put all versions of IE together) never became linear until it captured 90%+ of the market. > Why should our growth be different?
It's basic reality check time. IE gained share so quickly because it was shipped with nearly all new computers. Ship Mozilla as the only browser with nearly all new computers, and you'll see fast exponential growth up to 90% share, too. If not, get read for a long and sloooooow climb.
Someone should keep a graph of Mozilla's rise in usage share and some predicitions about future share. Then we can get a more realistic sense of Mozilla's growth.
Monday December 16th, 2002 7:01 PM
Who says we won't be preloaded in the future?
#67 Re: Re: IE's growth
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 9:52 PM
IE had ~40% marketshare before it was preloaded on a single computer. We're talking IE3/NS4.0 era.
This was due to a combination of word-of-mouth among techies (who had much more influence back then), and deals with ISPs, who were the primary channel ('air supply') for browsers back when a very high percentage of Internet users were new adopters.
These ISP deals were found to be illegal, but there was also the significant fact that Netscape was far less customizable back then, and couldn't be embedded (which cost them the AOL deal).
#91 Re: Re: Re: IE's growth
Thursday August 18th, 2005 6:14 AM
According to http://www.blooberry.com/indexdot/history/ie.htm IE shipped with Windows 95 OSR 2 in 1996. According to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Usage_share_of_web_browsers IE usage was 12-16% in 1996. IE didn't reach 40% share until years later.
#56 Re: well, I disagree
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 11:27 AM
<i>I'm not at all convinced that Mozilla's growth will start to become linear.</i> <p> Well, it should be obvious that exponential growth is a bad model. Your "math" would predict a 150% market share within the next four years! Growth in a limited-population system is *never* modeled as an exponential curve except in a limited regime where the initial population is extremely small. You want to use something like the logistic model, which would account for necessary slowing of the growth rate.
#57 Re: well, I disagree (fixed formatting)
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 11:28 AM
"I'm not at all convinced that Mozilla's growth will start to become linear."
Well, it should be obvious that exponential growth is a bad model. Your "math" would predict a 150% market share within the next four years! Growth in a limited-population system is *never* modeled as an exponential curve except in a limited regime where the population is extremely small. You want to use something like the logistic model, which would account for necessary slowing of the growth rate.
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 9:29 PM
Google is one of the most popular search engines on the internet. If anything, google is more popular with the technological-rich, rather than the technological-poor (who are stilll convinced that yahoo is the only ever search engine). Therefore, if anything, google should over represent Mozilla/Gecko.
Personally, I think that when talking about browser usage stats people should talk about Gecko, since that is what is important when trying to convince webmasters to change their habits.
#53 Re: 2005?
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 9:25 AM
"Assuming the Internet user base is constant, we would roughly have a 70% market share in less than **three** years."
Is that what you meant?
#47 Hehe - small share gives high change rates
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 2:40 AM
Yes - the smaller the share the higher the change rate. Not something to be too enthusiastic about. The big problem of Mozilla is IMO to give a good reason why to use it: IE comes free and readily preinstalled with every Windows machine - and there are the vast majority of desktop machines already. Why would the average user want to switch? Why would he want to: take the trouble of doing something to download and install a program that, essentially, does the same as the program he/she is used to (but will have problems with many pages that were "optimized" for IE).
It turns out that the dynamics of the browser share is largely caused by the monopoly and domination of MS. Everybody who has eyes to see will recognize that this situation can not be changed by technology or marketing. The current situation of the software market is more perverse than communist "markets" ever where - and it is not reduced to only a few countries, but becomes a problem nearly world-wide. It is obvious that only political measures can remedy this situation - politics in the US has just recently failed and politics are in danger to fail elsewhere, because there is a lot of pressure and war-money from MS and MS-dependent companies, but nearly no pressure and absolutely no war-money from the rest of the people, who are more or less forced to pay for something where they have no choice. So if you are a computer expert, try to get your senator, MP or other politically empowered person to realize the severity of the situation and take political steps to reestablish a *market* and *choice* where there currently is none.
#4 We will Beat M$IE before that! ~nfm~
Monday December 16th, 2002 12:46 PM
We will Beat M$IE before that!
#5 Netscape != OS
Monday December 16th, 2002 12:52 PM
"The global usage share of Netscape is 3.0 percent and is the second most popular operating system in the world."
When did Netscape become an OS? :-)
Monday December 16th, 2002 12:56 PM
Take that Opera!
#19 Geko kicks their butt!! :-)
Monday December 16th, 2002 1:50 PM
They want uses to spend $39 for something that's not as good as something that's free from Mozilla? BLAH!! Opera sucks.
#81 Opera rocks!
Wednesday December 18th, 2002 3:51 PM
I have used all more or less mainstream browsers (Netscape, IE, Mozilla, and Opera), and I can tell you that Opera does not suck. It is actually much better than Mozilla. It is better on a slow machine and on a fast machine. And if paying were the only way to use Opera, I would. Fortunately, they have a free version with ads. But $39 is worth what Opera provides.
Here's a list of Opera's main features I like: - excellent speed; - excellent memory management -- much better than IE's or Mozilla's - numerous usability features.
If I could only get IE's ability to save html with images in one file in Opera and google bar, I wouldn't have a smallest reason to use any other browser.
#88 Opera does not rock
Monday December 30th, 2002 1:44 AM
From the point of view of a developer, Opera does not rock. It has poor standards compliance, despite all its claims to the opposite. Even the new Opera 7 does not correctly render many of my pages that are 100% standards compliant and which uses CSS for all formatting. Mozilla and (surprizingly) IE 6 do much better.
#90 Opera rocks????
Friday January 3rd, 2003 3:12 PM
I prefer not to use shareware and Opera is not an exception, especially when there's better browser software like Mozilla around :-)
#7 hold on
Monday December 16th, 2002 12:58 PM
How can Netscape be at 3.0% if Netscape 4.x is at 1.1%? Since Netscape 3.x is completely marginal and Mozilla 1 is listed separately, it means that Netscape's Mozilla based browsers + Mozilla must be at least 1.1 + 1.9%. Right? Or did I misread the stats or something?
In any case, it seems pretty clear that Mozilla is totally treated like an end user product by the general public. So Mozilla's denial about how UI quality etc. doesn't matter seems pretty sad in light of that...
#27 Cool your jets, Sonny Jim
Monday December 16th, 2002 3:11 PM
"So Mozilla's denial about how UI quality etc. doesn't matter seems pretty sad in light of that..."
Are you claiming that the Mozilla team needs to suddenly decide "I guess we're developing end-user software!" just because they have a growing (fractional) marketshare? I certainly hope not, as that arguement wouldn't hold water.
It would be more correct to say "Despite Mozilla.Org's repeated statements to the contrary of its suitability, there is notable uptake of Mozilla (the browser-suite) as a piece of consumer-grade software." This better matches the facts, namely that Mozilla is not making a consumer-grade piece of sotware, but instead a FOUNDATION for consumer-grade software to be built upon.
I have to say that the tone of your comment "... seems pretty sad..." is awefully negative. Also, calling it a "denial" instead of a "statement" or an "explaination" carries negative connotations. Are you trying to shame Mozilla into changing it's focus, perhaps? Good luck if you are...
#42 Re: Cool your jets, Sonny Jim
Monday December 16th, 2002 11:26 PM
" I have to say that the tone of your comment "... seems pretty sad..." is awefully negative. Also, calling it a "denial" instead of a "statement" or an "explaination" carries negative connotations. Are you trying to shame Mozilla into changing it's focus, perhaps? Good luck if you are..."
There's been some discussion lately regarding the UI quality of Mozilla. In some areas, the UI is quite good (most of the browser, for example). In other areas - Mail in particular - it's quite poorly polished. The reasoning for why it doesn't matter has been that Mozilla is not an end user product. Well, this is true on paper, but these stats surely tell you that it's not true at all in reality. Mozilla is very much an end user product. Because of this and because Netscape's releases are 99% identical to Mozilla anyway, perhaps it would be a good idea to accept the fact that Mozilla is an end user product?
#44 Re: Re: Cool your jets, Sonny Jim
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 12:51 AM
>> Because of this and because Netscape's releases are 99% identical to Mozilla anyway, perhaps it would be a good idea to accept the fact that Mozilla is an end user product?
I'm not sure how "because Netscape's releases are 99% identical to Mozilla" has anything to do with your claim that Mozilla is an end user product. It seems to me your complaint is with Netscape and not Mozilla but you'd like to change the way Mozilla does its work because you don't think you can't change the way Netscape does its work.
Listen, we make this thing. That gives us the right to say who we're targeting and where our priorities are. You don't make this thing. You're in no position to say who we are targeting or what we should be focused on. You can like it or you can not like it but you don't have any influence over it so your repeated claims that it's "a fact" or that we're "in denial" are just a waste of time.
You clearly don't have an understanding of the project's priorities and so all your claims about what ought to be happening or where the focus should be are a waste of everyone's time. Mozilla has never had and does not currently have the resources to make a serious dent in browser market share without the distribtion that large companies are capable of. If I had to pick between fixing a polish bug that would make you more happy with Mozilla Mail or fixing a bug that would help to get gecko embedded into a commercial product shipping to millions of users, let me tell you, that's not a difficult decision to make.
If there are bugs in Mozilla that bother you then fix them. If you don't like something about Netscape then ask Netscape to fix it or fix it yourself in Mozilla and hope they pick up the fix in their next release. That's how this thing works. We don't need your "help" in deciding our priorities. We need strong developers and good patches. We don't need armchair quarterbacks. If you're not offering good code then you're just wasting time with a bunch of useless kibitzing.
#51 Re: Re: Re: Cool your jets, Sonny Jim
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 4:08 AM
I have to agree with Macpeep to some degree, why is it so hard to allow polish patchs to checkin. In other thread someone mentioned a ready patch with only sr missing that had been hanging there for months.
NS can't pick pathces if they aren't committed. I totally agree that mindless babbling about missing features or unfixed bugs is bad, but so is the current checkin policy to some degree.
#72 Re: Re: Re: Re: Cool your jets, Sonny Jim
Wednesday December 18th, 2002 10:46 AM
You can disagree with the checkin policy and that seems like a legitimate beef. To land a fix in cvs.mozilla.org which is part of the default Mozilla build you have to get review, super-review (and module owner approval if the r= or sr= didn't come from the module owner). That requres more than just writing a patch and walking away. I don't think that's likely to change for such chaotic modules as the app's frontend. In case you weren't aware, you can completely break the entire build, costing hours of wasted effort for dozens of developers, with a simple UI cleanup patch. These patches, just like XPCOM or Layout patches, are needed but also carry risk and so they must get sufficient review. Unfortunately we have more people offering up polish patches than we don reviewers and super-reviewers with time to look at them. That means some patches are slow to get in or don't land if the patch author isn't persistent. That's a shame but until we develop more experts in Mozilla's XUL, XBL and JS, there isn't a lot we can do about that problem. One of the reasons that Mozilla is feels unpolished and slow is poorly written code. Should we open the doors wide to more of the same or keep things heavily reviewed and try to make fundamental improvements to the code which make polish and long-term maintainence easier?
#52 Re: Re: Re: Cool your jets, Sonny Jim
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 6:49 AM
"It seems to me your complaint is with Netscape and not Mozilla but you'd like to change the way Mozilla does its work because you don't think you can't change the way Netscape does its work."
Well, kind of.. More exactly, my complaint is with Netscape (the end user product), but since the developers are (not all, but most) the same for Mozilla as for Netscape and the two are essentially the same thing (code wise and developer wise), it's just semantics to complain about Netscape and not Mozilla. Either way, it will be the same people with the same schedules working on them and the bug fixes will first find their way into Mozilla and then into the Netscape client.
"You're in no position to say who we are targeting or what we should be focused on."
I know this very well. I've said it before too that I know I have no saying in what should or shouldn't be focused on. My role in the whole Mozilla project is limited to exactly what we're doing right now - engage in coversations about the project(s) and their direction and problems. I'm not dictating or trying to dictate anything. I know very well that's not for me to do.
"If I had to pick between fixing a polish bug that would make you more happy with Mozilla Mail or fixing a bug that would help to get gecko embedded into a commercial product shipping to millions of users, let me tell you, that's not a difficult decision to make."
Obviously. But that's not the choice I'm talking about. I'm talking about the choice of "should we add Bayesian filters or polish up the UI?". Obviously fixing embedding bugs to get Gecko to power the next version of the AOL client is more important than Mozilla Mail UI polish. But not all engineers are working on the embedding issues and not all bug and feature work that goes on right now is about "crucial for large distribution" issues with schedules to meet.
Take one UI polish bug in itself and it is obviously totally trivial and a minor issue. But take 100 of them and it becomes an issue of UI quality, which is no longer so trivial. I know several people, including AOL employees, who refuse to switch to Mozilla Mail and keep running Netscape 4.x because of UI quality and functionality quirks. For me, it was the same way for a long time.
"If you're not offering good code then you're just wasting time with a bunch of useless kibitzing."
I beg to differ. This site is about advocacy and conversation regarding Mozilla. My comments and others in response to mine are exactly what this site is about.
#71 Re: Re: Re: Re: Cool your jets, Sonny Jim
Wednesday December 18th, 2002 10:37 AM
" Well, kind of.. More exactly, my complaint is with Netscape (the end user product), but since the developers are (not all, but most) the same for Mozilla as for Netscape and the two are essentially the same thing (code wise and developer wise), it's just semantics to complain about Netscape and not Mozilla. Either way, it will be the same people with the same schedules working on them and the bug fixes will first find their way into Mozilla and then into the Netscape client. "
If your complaint is with Netscape then complain to Netscape management. Complaining about Mozilla and Mozilla developers because you're unhappy with management decisions within one (yes, a large one) company contributing to Mozilla is just silly.
" Obviously. But that's not the choice I'm talking about. I'm talking about the choice of "should we add Bayesian filters or polish up the UI?"."
So, again, you're unhappy that Netscape management put their employees on a feature that you don't consider as important as polish or UI cleanup. Complain to Netscape management. Complaining about Mozilla and Mozilla developers becuase you're unhappy with Netscape's management and the decisions they make about the work they require of their employees is a waste of time. I doubt that Netscape managers even read these discussions so what you effectively do is talk to Netscape developers working on Mozilla telling them they're working on the wrong thing while their bosses tell them to work on something else. When they're off the clock and contributing as individual volunteers maybe they can listen but I doubt that they need to hear from you that they should be focused on polish.
If, on the other hand, you think the solution is for staff at mozilla.org to turn down these features being contributed by Netscape as some kind of forcing function to get them to contribute polish and cleanup fixes then you're just wrong. If mozilla.org says no to these features (features that are highly desirable to a pretty hefty majority of the community of developers and testers) then they'll just land in Netscape's code tree with two undesirable results: Mozilla would be shorter on features and Netscape would be far less well tested, stable and bugfree. You seem to want Netscape to be of higher quality and think the best way to do that is to kibitz to the Netscape developers who don't get to make those decisions. If you're really concerned about the quality of Netscape then pushing them out of Mozilla and into closed source commercial development is not a productive path.
" I know several people, including AOL employees, who refuse to switch to Mozilla Mail and keep running Netscape 4.x because of UI quality and functionality quirks."
And I know several people, including AOL employees, who refused to continue using Outlook or OE and switched to Mozilla or Netscape mail because of a lack of features and high risk of spreading a virus. There's a tradeoff between polish and features. Maybe since you fall in the "polish not features" camp you can build a community of like-minded folks to remove a dozen or two features from a fork of Moz Mail and really polish up a much smaller and easier to manage simple mail reader with no advanced functionality. Or you could go on complaining to some Netscape developers about their misplaced priorities rather than communicating with Netscape management who actually make most of those decisions for their employees.
" I beg to differ. This site is about advocacy and conversation regarding Mozilla. My comments and others in response to mine are exactly what this site is about."
Wait, didn't you already admit that your beef is with Netscape and you're just using Mozilla as a backdoor to the Netscape developers you hope to convice to work on something other than what their management demands of them? Something like: "More exactly, my complaint is with Netscape (the end user product), but since the developers are (not all, but most) the same for Mozilla as for Netscape and the two are essentially the same thing (code wise and developer wise)". Yep, that's what this site is all about for sure. MozillaZine, your site for complaining to Netscape mangement through their developers about Netscape management decisions you don't agree with. Maybe the site title should be changed.
#76 Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Cool your jets, Sonny Jim
Wednesday December 18th, 2002 1:55 PM
Well obviously I'm not (knowingly) complaining to Netscape developers about the decisions of their managers. And in cases where it is exactly like you say, that a Netscape manager says "work on feature X because it's important", then yes, obviously it's pointless to complain to Netscape developers, or even more, on a Mozilla site, indirectly to Netscape developers.
The way I understand it, Mozilla "becomes" a Netscape release by Netscape adding some branding to it, as well as some extra features such as AIM and a spell checker. But the core of the app is Mozilla. It's not LIKE Mozilla. It *IS* Mozilla. So any bug that is in Mozilla will be in Netscape. And any UI quality issue in Mozilla will be in Netscape. Additionally, even if I complained to Netscape about a bug (UI or other), the way the fix would find itself into the app is through Mozilla.
Perhaps the assumption is incorrect..
In any case, after reading your post, I'm left with the feeling that Mozilla doesn't really have all that much power about the development direction but that rather, the power is with Netscape management. Not directly, but indirectly due to now allowing Netscape developers any freedom regarding what areas they work on and prioritize but rather dictate exactly which bug should be fixed and what feature should be implemented and by whom. Would you say this is an accurate description of the situation? Am I perhaps under-estimating the contributions of other people and companies? Surely in terms of the UI, it seems that it is basically Netscape controlling it through Netscape's own prioritization and requirements.
#84 Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Cool your jets, Sonny Jim
Thursday December 19th, 2002 12:17 AM
"Well obviously I'm not (knowingly) complaining to Netscape developers about the decisions of their managers."
You're not? It sounded to me like you were. You were saying that Mozilla (a collection of contributors including Netscape developers and not netscape developers) should consider itself an end user product and fix the UI bugs that bother you so that Netscape would have the fixes you wanted it to have. "Because Netscape's releases are 99% identical to Mozilla anyway, perhaps it would be a good idea to accept the fact that Mozilla is an end user product?".
You said "I'm talking about the choice of 'should we add Bayesian filters or polish up the UI'" where by "we" I think you meant "the Netscape engineer that implemented Bayesian filters". You would have prefered that he not work on that feature and instead work on UI polish. "Where it is exactly like you say, that a Netscape manager says 'work on feature X because it's important', then yes, obviously it's pointless to complain to Netscape developers, or even more, on a Mozilla site, indirectly to Netscape developers". Exactly.
"I'm left with the feeling that Mozilla doesn't really have all that much power about the development direction but that rather, the power is with Netscape management. "
Mozilla is what it's contributors make it. mozilla.org exists to coordinate the development efforts of all of the Mozilla contributors. Netscape has been a major contributor, but not in any way the only one. Sun is a major contributor with dozens of full-time engineers working on Mozilla. IBM has contributed engineers. RedHat has contributed engineers. Worldgate, Nokia, Intel, HP, Compaq, OEOne, ActiveState, CrocodileClips, and many other companies large and small have contributed engineering resources and guess what; that's how they influence the project. What ever will we do with all these companies influencing the direction of the project? Surely we should tell them to all go away if they're not going to fix Macpeep's pet bugs.
Sun wanted accessibility for Mozilla on GTK (among other things) and so they contributed massive amounts of code in that area and mozilla.org accepted it. Sun seems to be running the show when it comes to GTK accessibility. Damn. What ever will we do? OEOne wanted a great XUL ical-based calendar client (among other things) so they wrote one and contributed it to Mozilla. Yep, that's OEOne wielding power in the Mozilla world. Horrible isn't it? RedHat (recently) wanted a browser capable of rendering XFT fonts so a RedHat engineer implemented XFT support for Mozilla. Hell. What are we gonna do about RedHat prioritizing their employees' time and contributing features to Mozilla? How dare they. Netscape wanted spam controls and so they wrote good code to implement it and contributed it to Mozilla. What are we to do? We can't have Netscape contributing a feature to Mozilla and so influencing the direction of mozilla mail. That just won't do. ActiveState wanted Python bindings for XPCOM so they wrote them and contributed them to Mozilla. Damn them for controlling pyXPCOM. Why do we tolerate that!?
And we're not just made up of corporate contributors. There are plenty of individual volunteers working hard all the time to make Mozilla better. What on earth are we going to do about dbaron and bernd and bz and roc asserting all this control over which layout bugs get fixed (isn't it dangerous to let students of such powerful educational institutions as Harvard, CMU and MIT impact the direction of our project?). Who will stop RBS from running the mathML show? What can be done to stop andreas and bbaetz from driving quality into our networking code? What should we do to stop TOR from controlling the direction of imagelib? Why did we ever let blake assert so much control over our UI or bengoodger or hewitt or jag or varga (in case you didn't know, many Netscape employees were significant contributors as ivoluneers long before Netscape hired them). Who should tell samuel sieb that he shouldn't be controlling the direction of Chatzilla's prioritization and requirements? What is to be done about caillon having so much influence on DOM Inspector (and layout and browser and mail frontends, too)? And who let biesi and timeless take such control over polish and cleanup of the UI? We can't have all these contributors influencing the project like this. And what about dean tessman and hwaara and hixie and benb and pete collins and jonas sicking and all the other individual contributors, mentioned above and not mentioned, that have had a serious impact on Mozilla _just_this_year_? And what about all the individual contributors from last year or the year before. Too bad we can't go back in time and make sure that none of them tried to control which bugs got fixed by (say it with me) actually fixing bugs! If only they had thought ahead 4 years ago an put in place a system where a handful of users dictated the direction of the project. What were they thinking when they put together a system where the people actually contributing the code would decide what work got done? Damn the meritocracy. Foolish, foolish organizers. What were they thinking?
mozilla.org may say (and has said) no to features or fixes that aren't well planned or well architected or well coded or come at an inoportune time for Mozilla but I don't think that applies to most of the recent features that have landed and that's precisely why they landed. Should we have said no to XFT font rendering or to mail spam controls? You're free to think so. I disagree.
"Surely in terms of the UI, it seems that it is basically Netscape controlling it through Netscape's own prioritization and requirements."
I thought you were claiming the opposite. Aren't you claiming that Netscape wasn't doing anything in terms of the UI and that lack of UI focus was the heart of your dissatisfaction with the product? Did I miss some twist in the discussion? Does Netscape control the implementation of the features they implement? Is that what you're asking? I guess the answer is yes, mostly. But Netscape engineers still have to get review and super-review and possibly approval and in almost every new feature that I've seen land in the recent past that process involved input from people not at Netscape. Can Netscape block any of the hundreds of not-Netscape developers with CVS access (or without) from getting UI cleanup and polish fixes landed? Nope. Why would they? Is Netscape blocking you from contributing cleanup and polish fixes that you want to see in the next Netscape release? If they are then let me know and I'll do something about it.
Damn, this compose window is way too small. It scrolls my post so I can't see that I've gone on way too long :)
#87 Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Cool your jets, Sonny
Thursday December 19th, 2002 12:18 PM
I think you're getting the wrong idea about what I'm trying to do. My point in this thread was simply based on two observations:
1) Recent stats seem to indicate that Mozilla (the browser) is very popular. More so even than Netscape's or any other Mozilla technology based browsers.
2) Mozilla (the browser) has some UI quality issues, in particular in the Mail & News app. These UI quality issues also carry over to Netscape's browser (or the other way around, whichever way is more correct to say).
Now, based on these two observations, I made the suggestion that maybe Mozilla should start thinking about the app as an end user app. Not market it, nothing like that. Just simply treat it as it's an end user app for the major releases, since people still treat it that way. And if that was to happen, but even if it doesn't, the UI quality issues are getting more important to work out, since Mozilla's UI is spreading to a lot of end users, either directly through Mozilla or through a Netscape release.
That's all. It's obviously clear what I think the priority is, and it's obviously clear that you don't agree with my priorities at all. But I'm definitely not alone with my worries about the UI, even though you make it sound like it in your posts, several times using language like "if they're not going to fix Macpeep's pet bugs". These are not "my pet bugs". I don't have any pet (peeve) bugs. I simply find the UI quality lacking in general and have used a couple of issues as examples to show what I mean. The UI quality issue is a very widely recognized problem - not something only I worry about.
All the rest is just exaggerations, mis-interpreting and reading things into stuff I say that isn't really there.
#54 Re: Re: Re: Cool your jets, Sonny Jim
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 9:47 AM
Jeebus, asa, you sound just like someone from capitol hill. "I know what's good for you people, and you're going to get it, whether you like it or not!"
Ask yourself this, asa: Why is mozilla being written? What is it's goal? If the goal is just to have a little developer circlejerk, hey, be my guest, ignore user demand all you want. But if you actually want to make mozilla a non-niche product then you're going to have to realise that there are more interests at stake here than just those of the developers.
Bah, why am I posting this anyway, it's like talking to a wall. Mozilla is dieing as far as I'm concerned. Sad.
#66 Re: Re: Re: Cool your jets, Sonny Jim
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 9:46 PM
"I'm not sure how "because Netscape's releases are 99% identical to Mozilla" has anything to do with your claim that Mozilla is an end user product. "
If Netscape wants an End User Feature, they generally check it into Mozilla. I'm not sure why anyone from mozilla.org would want Netscape to change they way they work.
"We don't need armchair quarterbacks. If you're not offering good code then you're just wasting time with a bunch of useless kibitzing. "
That's a rather odd from a guy who's job description apparently include "kibitzing" on message boards.
#73 Re: Re: Re: Re: Cool your jets, Sonny Jim
Wednesday December 18th, 2002 10:49 AM
" If Netscape wants an End User Feature, they generally check it into Mozilla. I'm not sure why anyone from mozilla.org would want Netscape to change they way they work. "
I think Macpeep is suggesting that mozilla.org change the way this works. I think he's suggesting that mozilla.org say no to end user features contributed from Netscape to try to force them to devote their developer contributions on polish and cleanup.
#8 Re: So Soon after 1.2?
Monday December 16th, 2002 12:59 PM
If they want people to take mozilla seriously turn off the splash screen (that looks like some preschool was learning photoshop) by default.
#9 Re: So Soon after 1.2?
Monday December 16th, 2002 1:00 PM
*Especially* with business and corporate people. They look at that and are like wtf.
#22 uh yeah
Monday December 16th, 2002 1:51 PM
Don't give them Mozilla. Give them Netscape.
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 2:47 AM
Actually, Mozilla is - well, would - be far better suited for corporate users than NS, for a couple of reasons: all of the sources directly available and inspectable for security flaws, no unnecessary spam links, no IM, better support, and more. So targetting Mozilla more towards corporate users - of which there are a lot - would certainly help greatly to extend the user base of Gecko-based browsers.
#74 Re: No
Wednesday December 18th, 2002 10:55 AM
I'm not even a developer but if I was getting ready to deploy Mozilla in an enterprise environment then I'd either hide the splash screen or replace it with a simple white box with the text "We're watching. You better be doing work. No porn surfing." ;-) Seriously, the splash screen, which isn't even on by default on Linux, is easier to configure than just about any piece of the application. If you're deploying a browser in a corporation and that's the one thing holding you back then you're not likely to want Mozilla for the initial reason you stated above that a corporation would want it: "all of the sources directly available and inspectable for security flaws".
#26 Re: Re: So Soon after 1.2?
Monday December 16th, 2002 3:09 PM
#30 Browser is a commodity
Monday December 16th, 2002 3:41 PM
You mean IMMATURE, not ammature. ... and do you dare to complain about Mozilla's splash screen?
#69 I meant amateur, not immature
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 10:04 PM
"You mean IMMATURE, not ammature..."
No actually I meant "amateur". And yes, I do dare complain about Mozilla's splash screen :p
#33 Re: Re: Re: So Soon after 1.2?
Monday December 16th, 2002 4:10 PM
I don't know if you meant 'immature' as in childish, or 'amateurish' as in unprofessional, but what ever you meant, you should correct your webpage if you want people to take it (and you) seriously.
#34 Keep the splash!
Monday December 16th, 2002 4:28 PM
Hey, I love that splash screen. It's one of the best things about Mozilla.
If people don't want to use Moz because of it's splash screen, then they probably wouldn't use Moz anyway, and use Netscape instead.
#41 Re: Keep the splash!
Monday December 16th, 2002 11:05 PM
I've grown to love the splash screen too ;)
At first I thought yeah WTF, but now I like it, very much so even.
Make a better one or stop whining!
#46 Re: Re: Keep the splash!
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 1:12 AM
There already is a large collection of proposed splash screens. And some of them are quite good.
I personally know of at least one user (uncle of a friend) that flat out rejected to try Mozilla because the splash screen looked too unprofessional.
But the infamous splash screen debate has been going on for a while, and nothing has changed.
#65 re: Keep the splash!
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 9:45 PM
so he's using NS7 instead, right?
#68 Re: Re: Re: Keep the splash!
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 9:56 PM
What really bugs me is that Mozilla is green in the (unprofessional looking) spash screen, but he's red on the (unprofessional looking) icons! What the hell kind of branding is that?
#75 Re: Re: Re: Re: Keep the splash!
Wednesday December 18th, 2002 10:57 AM
mozilla.org has concerned itself far more with building fast, stable, and powerful technologies than in putting a pretty label on them. If you're looking for a pretty label then talk to Netscape or Sun or OEOne or any of the people out there using our technologies who care more about marketing and have the resources to do something about it.
#85 Just joking
Thursday December 19th, 2002 2:00 AM
Next time I'll try to remember to add a smilely.
#48 I agree - the splash screen is embarrassing
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 2:45 AM
It looks like the wet dream of a 14 year old computer game addict. Not that it is really very relevant, but it *is* ugly and somewhat embarrassing for a piece of software that is to a large extend good quality. (Though the high code/comments+docs ratio seems to be an indication of the average age of the involved programmers too :) )
#61 Re: Re: So Soon after 1.2?
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 5:42 PM
Install an alternative splash screen from http://mozcafe.com. We'll put a gallery with all current proposals packaged in easy-to-install XPI files soon. There is a Mozilla Cafe skin for XP in the making, it will include a professionally designed splash screen :-)
#62 Re: Re: So Soon after 1.2?
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 5:44 PM
oops MozillaZine has added a dot to the address, the link should be http://mozcafe.com/
#10 New Users...
Monday December 16th, 2002 1:02 PM
An interesting thing about the armchair analysis being done above is that it doesn't account for *new* users to the Internet. The Internet is still a growth opportunity as the prices of PCs continue to plummet and connectivity becomes ubiquitous. This begs the question: what is the Mozilla organization doing to capture the new user market?
#11 If the statistics are as accurate as their reports
Monday December 16th, 2002 1:02 PM
Then I don't know how reliable they are:
"The most popular browsers in the Netherlands are:
1-4 all IE 5. Mozilla 1 1.6% 6. Opera 6 1.5% 7. Netscape Navigator 4.0 0.9%
Companies with the largest total global usage shares in the Netherlands are:
1. Microsoft IE 94.9% 2. Opera 1.7% 3. Mozilla 1.6%
How did Opera climb from 1.5 (Browsers) to 1.7 (Companies)?
#14 Re: If the statistics are as accurate as their rep
Monday December 16th, 2002 1:18 PM
Because the 1.5% is for Opera version 6 and the 1.7% is for Opera - all versions.
#12 New Users...
Monday December 16th, 2002 1:03 PM
An interesting thing about the armchair analysis being done above is that it doesn't account for *new* users to the Internet. The Internet is still a growth opportunity as the prices of PCs continue to plummet and connectivity becomes ubiquitous. This begs the question: what is the Mozilla organization doing to capture the new user market?
Monday December 16th, 2002 1:50 PM
Basically nothing, unfortunately.
One basic thing we should do is provide a link from the pages we create to either Netscape 7.01 or Mozilla or some Mozilla product.
Beyond that, do you have any ideas?
#24 Re: Re: Hard bug? Why?
Monday December 16th, 2002 2:56 PM
Starting late next year AOL users will start switching to Mozilla based browser. -> 20% (In the U.S. at least)
Over the next five years or so Linux will take a chunk out of the desktop -> 20%
Non-PC clients are gradually becoming more popular. A lot of those will be Opera, but some will be Mozilla -> 5%
Word of mouth among geeks or wanna-be geeks -> 5%
I bet Apple ships with Mozilla at some point, once they feel they don't need MS -> 5%
Those guesses are just that of course - wild guesses. But I expect enough of them will bear out that Mozilla will have a bright future.
#13 years or gecko aol
Monday December 16th, 2002 1:14 PM
It could take years to obtain majority share with evangelism. However, I think with the availability of a gecko based version of AOL for Windows combined with an aggressive upgrade campaign this could happen within a year.
#15 Re: Why majority share?
Monday December 16th, 2002 1:18 PM
What's so important about Mozilla having a majority share? What's wrong with only 25% of the market? Or 5% for that matter?
#18 5% is too little
Monday December 16th, 2002 1:45 PM
Today some site owners say "95% of our visitors use Internet Explorer - screw standards, screw users of non-IE browsers - run IE or get lost".
Making web pages is not only coding according to standards, but also coding around known bugs in existing browsers. All browsers have bugs and lack of support for the ever growing number of web standards.
Assume that a site owner discovers that his site does not work in Mozilla due to some obscure bug (in Mozilla) and he cannot find an easy workaround. He might say "our pages are written according to the standards - it may not work in Mozilla, but as long as it only has a market share of X % I don't care". In this situation, market share matters.
#23 Re: If 5% is too little, how much is enough?
Monday December 16th, 2002 2:38 PM
I agree, some site owners will say "screw standards, screw anyone who doesn't use IE". What magical usage share of non-IE browsers will result in *all* site owners saying "I'll use standards and make sure my pages work in Mozilla"? And is it reasonable to think that Mozilla can reach that goal, considering the fact that the vast majority of desktop computers ship with IE 5 or 6 preinstalled and the vast majority of users will not bother to download any other browser?
I'm all for more users of Mozilla and Opera -- it will make the web more usable for everyone -- but if Mozilla had just 5% usage share nearly all sites would work in Mozilla. It's hard for me to find sites that don't work, and Mozilla has only recently approached just 2% share!
#64 all sites
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 9:37 PM
for all sites to work in mozilla, you need a 100.00000% usage share, and that includes intranet and other non-universal websites. I think 5% is too low for all major sites to need Mozilla support. I think you need something closer to 15-20%.
#17 Don't forget Apple
Monday December 16th, 2002 1:33 PM
If Apple started shipping a Mozilla-based browser (Chimera, Apple "iBrowser", whatever) as the default with new Macs, we'd see a significant jump. Sure, only about 5% of web users are on Macs (based on Google's October 2002 zeitgeist), but that 5% is still significant. The Mac is a more level battleground for Mozilla, since IE is not as entrenched and is out-of-date compared to Mozilla or to IE6 for Windows. Apple has no reason to keep bundling IE if something better is available, and most Mac buyers will probably use whatever browser Apple ships.
#16 Cool, but what about CSI 7.0?
Monday December 16th, 2002 1:23 PM
I wonder if this percentage included Compuserve 7.0 members? Ah well, if nothing else, at least we get to thumb our noses at Opera, if not yet IE. I've always thought that any company who thinks they can charge $30 for a Web browser is about as dumb as someone who thinks they can make money with a new Linux distro. Here's hoping Opera gets a clue and goes belly up soon!
#25 Re: Opera
Monday December 16th, 2002 3:03 PM
I'm all for more Opera users, especially Opera 7 users now that it has better standards support than Mozilla in some areas. When less than 1% of page hits are from Netscape 4 and IE 4, and more than 5% are from Mozilla and Opera, there's going to be a compelling reason to use standards and no compelling reason to bend over backwards to support older or broken browsers. That will mean a better web for everyone.
#21 Re: Chuck Upsdell's Browser Stats
Monday December 16th, 2002 1:51 PM
Chuck Upsdell's Browser Stats http://upsdell.com/BrowserNews/stat.htm show similar numbers: Gecko-based browsers have 1.8% usage share, and Opera has only 0.75%.
The better news is that use of Netscape 4 and IE 4 is continuing to drop. When those browsers are gone, it'll be easier for web authors to use the standards and still make sites work for nearly all users.
#45 Re: Re: Chuck Upsdell's Browser Stats
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 12:58 AM
And then, next I'll be happy to see go are IE 5.0 and 5.5. 5.0 has a very bad CSS-support and 5.5 still a broken box model. With these 2 browsers around, you still can't do any hard-core standards-compliance.
#28 since september, we have grown bya factor of 1.375
Monday December 16th, 2002 3:28 PM
since september, we have grown bya factor of 1.375
#29 *by a*
Monday December 16th, 2002 3:29 PM
#38 The Mozilla Tax
Monday December 16th, 2002 5:48 PM
With mozilla and its kin making a slow march towards 5% we'll soon hear more and more about the "mozilla tax" - the cost to business of ignoring mozilla.
How much is the sales tax in your state or province? Do you think about it before you make a purchase or does it absolutely never enter your mind? How much is 5% of your income? Could you toss that aside each payday without batting an eye?
5% isnít that small. 1% isnít that small either!! The combined yearly salaries of the entire e-marketing staff for my employer do not represent 1% of company revenue. It's no surprise that a simple cost-to-risk analysis guaranteed mozilla-compatibility as a requirement for all future e-marketing projects.
#40 And Phoenix?
Monday December 16th, 2002 8:00 PM
I use Phoenix, and I'd like to know how many users uses that marvellous browser.
#43 Some low numbers
Monday December 16th, 2002 11:32 PM
Gecko based browsers stats of some high profile generic sites by extremetracking.com
rarlabs.com 11 Aug 2002 - 1.90% 11 Dec 2002 - 1.77%
sharereactor.com 12 Aug 2002 - 2.19% 11 Dec 2002 - 2.68%
archive.org 11 Aug 2002 - 3.21% 11 Dec 2002 - 3.31%
I'd say very slow growth :(
More evangelism is needed, and http://pivx.com/larholm/unpatched/ should be spreaded more widely
7 day stats on my low profile site (~1k hits per day): 00.38% - MSIE 4.0 14.60% - MSIE 5.0 10.90% - MSIE 5.5 64.68% - MSIE 6.0 03.25% - Gecko (6.59% of 3.25% for Phoenix) 03.39% - Opera 00.19% - Konqueror 02.36% - Other 90.81% - MSIE all
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 11:11 AM
Actually the growth is a bit faster that that. Extreme tracking stats show the percentage from the date the tracking started, not just for that month or week. For example, sharereactor.com's figure 2.72% (as of now) is the percentage of visitors using Mozilla-based browser from March 13th to this date. The longer the counter has been running, the slower all changes in the percetages will be. (Extreme tracking counters that have been running for years have disproportionally large share for NS 4.x, for example.)
By looking at the absolute numbers e.g. once a month, it would be possible calculate a more realistic figure...
#50 Why do people use IE?
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 3:31 AM
I reciently had to use a XP machine that had only IE 6.0, which I never used before and after that experience I cannot believe why anyone would want to use that browser. Becuase you can't load tabs in the background, browsing with IE was *much* slower than Phoenix for me. Not to mention all the security flaws. For instance, I noticed that IE does not seem clear out cookies that expire at the end of the session, even if you log out of Windows and log in again.
#60 Re: Why do people use IE?
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 4:57 PM
I'm quite finicky and have recently gone back to IE5 from Moz (and from Pheonix before that). A big reason is that on slower machines (K6-2 380, luckily I just got a great P4), the itnerface is very slow. eg. right-click/shortcut menu takes up to 1 sec to load, while negligible on IE. Even on the P4 1.8 I use at work, it's noticeably slower and I eventually had to switch. To a large extent this is a perception issue: IE may take similar time to do things (like startup), but using tricks like loading a win that responds after a few secs it creates the (mis)conception that it's faster. This may seem almost stupid, but perception is everything - why would i stare at that frustratingly childish and unchanged splash for a few secs if I don't have to? A browser that feels much faster is much less frustrating, and IE does a much better job at hiding its speed. I notice the difference, so I use IE.
#77 Re: Why do people use IE?
Wednesday December 18th, 2002 2:30 PM
You might want to scope out the new Phoenix release (0.5). It actually loads faster for me than IE6 on my 1.3 Ghz Win2k laptop. I hear what you're saying about slower machines--my wife is stuck on a PI-233 until we buy our first iMac. ;-) IE loads much quicker than Moz, and decidedly so over Phoenix, too. Phoenix seems to be catching up though--last night I was using it on the PI without any extreme performance problems.
#79 Re: Why do people use IE?
Wednesday December 18th, 2002 3:38 PM
What do you do on the web? Have you done much long-term research in any area? If you knew how much joy IE's ability to save a whole page, html with images, in one file, brings, then you would know an answer to your question.
#82 Re: Re: Why do people use IE?
Wednesday December 18th, 2002 5:49 PM
Huh ? Mozilla can do that too. Just click on 'save page as' and choose "Web Page, complete".
Very handy for saving online receipts, etc.
#83 Re: Re: Re: Why do people use IE?
Wednesday December 18th, 2002 10:35 PM
Didn't I say "save a whole page, html with images, in ***one file***"? Yes, I did. Mozilla can't do that.
#58 Konq = MSIE?
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 12:26 PM
I was just checking my server logs, and noticed that konquereor sessions are being logged as MSIE because that's the UA that Konq sents.
Silly KDE people...
#59 Re: Konq = MSIE?
Tuesday December 17th, 2002 1:18 PM
My Konqueror useragent is: Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; Konqueror/3; Linux)
How can this be logged as IE?
#78 Re: Konq = MSIE?
Wednesday December 18th, 2002 3:26 PM
uh, dude, I don't really think you know what you are talking about. Konqueror doesn't pretend it is IE unless you set the user agent by hand. Please get informed first before posting. ;-)
#70 Heise.de just published it's userbase
Wednesday December 18th, 2002 5:09 AM
You can find it here: http://www.heise.de/newsticker/data/anw-18.12.02-000/
I really like the user-share that Gecko-based browsers gained in the last months there. :)
#80 Skewed statistic on Opera usage
Wednesday December 18th, 2002 3:42 PM
When you analyze usage of Opera, you need to take into account that Opera indentifies itself as IE, by default.
#86 Re: Skewed statistic on Opera usage
Thursday December 19th, 2002 5:43 AM
But any decent web log analyzer will properly detect Opera user agent strings. They always have the text "Opera" in them! I don't think Opera statistics are being seriously skewed. All the web stats based on a large sample of sites shows Opera usage consistently below 1%.
#89 Re: Skewed statistic on Opera usage
Monday December 30th, 2002 1:47 AM
Nope, although Opera posing as IE can fool websites into displaying an IE-specific page, it will not fool the log files because Opera always inserts its name in the user agent string, even when it identifies as another browser.