AOL to Release New Netscape Update in Early Summer

Tuesday March 30th, 2004

The Inquirer is reporting that America Online is to release a new version of the Netscape browser. The upgrade will be a "'point' release based on the latest Mozilla code" and "will be made available in the very early summer timeframe." Speculation that an update was in the works began last week, when the San Francisco Bay Area's Mercury News paraphrased an AOL spokeswoman as saying that "there will be future versions of Netscape that are essentially repackaged upgrades of Mozilla."

The confirmation that a new Netscape release is on the way does not indicate that AOL is planning to provide any further development or financial support to the Mozilla project. Indeed, no AOL employees are paid to work on Mozilla and we can expect this latest version to be even more similar to Mozilla than previous releases. The more intriguing question is what made AOL change its mind about shelving the veteran browser.

#34 Re: Re: Re: Re: New stable branch?

by asa <>

Wednesday March 31st, 2004 11:30 PM

You are replying to this message

"It's not like any of us care about the quality of the product we produce, right?"

I guess we could follow your suggestion and treat 1.7 as just another Mozilla milestone with little concern towards stabilizing it. Let's just branch and ship it as it is today. Just because Firefox 1.0, Thunderbird, SeaMonkey, and other major vendor releases intend to ship products from the 1.7 branch doesn't mean we have to care about making it stable.

Just because millions of end users will be downloading releases from the 1.7 branch (probably an order of magnitude more users than will be downloading the 1.8 SeaMonkey release) doesn't mean we should put any more effort into ensuring that those products don't crash and burn.

I suppose you're correct that it's much more important to get our APIs just right for a 1.8 branch that _won't_ be used by anyone beyond a single SeaMonkey release than to drive some stability into the 1.7 branch that _will_ be the basis for major releases. Giving millions of users a stable product shouldn't be allowed to get in our way. What was I thinking.