Mozilla Article on ZDNet

Saturday March 13th, 1999

Here's some news from Saturday. My excuse? Moving to a new apartment. There are some other things to put up today. and I hope I can find some time to get to them.

From Joel Caris comes news of a Gecko article on ZDNet:

"A pretty good ZDNet article on Gecko and Communicator 5.0. The most interesting information is that a beta is supposed to be out in July with a final, commercial release at the end of the year. I hate to have to wait, but it's worth it for the quality."

#1 Re:Mozilla Article on ZDNet

by Kovu

Monday March 15th, 1999 1:46 PM

That's fab. I'll try not to bitter that the media found this out about the NS 5.0 timeline while those involved in developing the product had nary a clue.

#2 Re:Mozilla Article on ZDNet

by JamisonMVP

Monday March 15th, 1999 3:59 PM

Personally, I'm glad Netscape 5 is taking longer to come out than MSIE 5. Let Netscape's developers weed out all the bugs beforehand so numerous patches are not neccessary. Also, I'm quite happy with Netscape Communicator 4.5, and I won't mind sticking with it for another three or four months.

#3 Re:Mozilla Article on ZDNet

by S.T.

Monday March 15th, 1999 6:18 PM

Hehe, make that 2-3 years. In the most optimistic case. OR 1 year and a crippled product which is completely unable to compare to IE5.

#4 Re:Mozilla Article on ZDNet

by mozineAdmin

Monday March 15th, 1999 8:18 PM

I think S.T.'s estimation is pretty off the mark. They are hitting their milestones (or coming damn close), and have made impressive strides, considering they are essentially starting from scratch and building up a new, impressive cross-platform base.

What's nice about their approach is that once the foundation is laid, future upgrading will be much quicker, with much more platform parity.

#5 Re:

by S.T.

Monday March 15th, 1999 8:38 PM

Couldn't agree with you more. I LOVE this approach. The new code has is of a much better quality and will have a huge benefit in the future.

BUT, let's be realistic: the Mozilla team is, as you said, creating a FOUNDATION. That includes a cross-platform windowing toolkit, a complete component model, and so on. All with a fairly small team (1-200 people) Any software engineer with some experience knows that each of those efforts normally requires 1-2 years in order to be done right. Just take a look at Sun's Swing dates.

That's why I think that my estimation is quite optimistic. And that's why they need all the help they can get from all of us. Else, a premature crippled product may be released under market's pressure...

#6 Re:Mozilla Article on ZDNet

by go home

Monday March 15th, 1999 9:25 PM

Come on S.T., fess up Gates. Go back to MSN.

#7 Re: go home

by S.T.

Monday March 15th, 1999 11:21 PM

And you grow up, kiddo. We are discussing ideas here. If you are unable to get past the slogans, go work in advertising.

A real supporter acknowledges the weaknesses, not only praises the merits.

#8 Re:Mozilla Article on ZDNet

by V.H.

Tuesday March 16th, 1999 6:01 AM

So, S.T., what is your response to the fact that Mozilla developers actually hit their milestones, and thus actually so far is ON SCHEDULE for a beta in July and full version by the end of the year?

What are your estimates based on? If your estimates should turn out true, it would mean that milestones will have to start slipping BADLY from now on. Do you have any indication of that happening? I don't, and I'm watching it closely because we depend on Mozilla for a commercial project.

#9 Re:Mozilla Article on ZDNet

by S.T.

Tuesday March 16th, 1999 9:33 AM

I am basing my estimation on day by day running of the latest build + reading the source code and comparing all of this with Communicator's 4.5 level of functionality.

The latest milestone is very far from an alpha release. It is impossible to jump from that to a beta in July. Major area of the product are not there at all or they are barely working, in need of a lot of work to achieve maturity. For example: mail/news, xpcom, xpfe.

And especially International code. You know, Comm 4.5 is able to display & edit Chinese content. Do you have any idea how much work is needed to get it in a new code base? I hope they have a big team for that! And I personally have no idea how to design it under xpfe...

And the list could go on. Add to all that about 2-3 months of tweaking and fine tuning needed to have a friendly ui...

So, if your company depends on it, I suggest you give those guys a hand...

#10 Re:Mozilla Article on ZDNet

by Brent

Tuesday March 16th, 1999 11:53 AM

Is it just me, but wasn't ZDNet the authors of that extremely biased MSIE article a few weeks ago? My guess is this is written to regain loyalty from the NS crowd.

#11 Re:Mozilla Article on ZDNet

by V.H.

Wednesday March 17th, 1999 2:52 AM

S.T: We _ARE_ giving a hand. I'm in the process of hiring several people that will work on Mozilla on a full time basis.

And from my experience with the daily builds, I certainly don't agree with you. Yes, a lot of functionality is missing from the main branch. However, the improvements have been rather dramatic.

Ok, maybe a version of Mozilla that can edit Chinese are a few months extra off. But how many percent of the Netscape userbase are affected by that?

I don't see anything in Mozilla that can't be done within the timeframe specified. Especially since increasing stability and ease of building usually equals more developers in the open source world: the easier it is to get started, the more people will contribute. And Mozilla is getting there.

I see several other companies that mentions putting people on Mozilla. And I think you'll see it maturing a lot faster than some may expect.

Btw., allthough we'll be using parts of Mozilla in our projects, we won't be using XPFE/XUL or mail/news at all, so even less reason to be concerned for me. So we'll put 4-5 people on fulltime bugfixing, and memory footprint reduction, and general adaption for embedded use.