MozillaZine

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%.


#84 Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Cool your jets, Sonny Jim

by asa <asa@mozilla.org>

Thursday December 19th, 2002 12:17 AM

You are replying to this message

"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 :)

--Asa