MozillaZine

Full Article Attached Mozilla Looking to Forge Alliances with GNOME and Other Open Source Projects to Combat Longhorn

Tuesday April 6th, 2004

jgraham writes: "Brendan Eich has written an interesting post to the netscape.public.mozilla.seamonkey newsgroup outlining some of the plans being made to ensure that Mozilla technology remains useful and relevant in the future. Brendan sees Mozilla developing into an open cross-platform alternative to forthcoming Microsoft technologies such as XAML and is looking to collaborate with other open-source projects to make this happen." The GNOME project is mentioned explicitly. Brendan's message is part of a longer thread about the goals of mozilla.org.


#3 I agree with our plan.

by pkb351 <pbergsagel@shaw.ca>

Tuesday April 6th, 2004 10:06 PM

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I believe that recent events agree with your assessment of the directon MS is diving Longhorn. The recent European Unipon Antitrust Trial was not really about MediaPlayer IMHO. This trial was about how Microsoft leverages its OS by bolting in proprietary technologies to its Windows code. The trial actually was about Longhorn and setting up a way to prevent MS from leveraging Longhorn to limit competition. The EU ruled that MS must "unbolt" Media Player hopefully will make future "bolting" cases easier and quicker to rule on (a Longhorn search bar comes to mind). The direction I see the EU moving (and I hope it works) is to set up a ruling that prohibits MS to use Longhorn to promote propritary standards whose sole purpose is to lock out competing OSes and other software vendors (ie Linux in the server market). The EU ruling I believe makes it much harder for MS to lock out (through poor interoperability) servers running non-Windows OSes. I understand this trial as an attempt to say to MS you are not allowed to add propritarty standards or non-removable programs to Longhorn if the reason is to limit competition. Lets hope the EU gets it right.

The EU is addressing a very similar issue being faced by Mozilla. How can open standards be protected? For Mozilla to be part of the solution Mozilla and its software technologies have to gain market share. We cannot sit back andwait for the EU to reign MS in or to restore open standards for us. At the moment there are several companies very dependent on standards remaining open (Apple, Linux vendors, Sun, IBM, just to name a few). Could Mozilla partner with some of the larger companies?

<an aside>I believe Apple missed the boat when it bypassed Mozilla for Safari. Apple is one company that could be hurt the most if the propritary standards of Longhorn catch on and would have a lot to gain if they embraced to crossplatform application building nature of Mozilla.I going with Safari I believe Apple was tired depending on outsiders for their web browser. Once burned, twice shy. My hope is that once Apple sees and understands the importance of the crossplatform open standard nature of Mozilla they will at least support, if not embrace, Mozilla.</an aside>

I beleive we are already late in putting Brendan's plan into action. MS has a good marketing department. They are already promoting and evangelizing the propritary technolgies, even though they are at least a year away. I believe Mozilla has to also do its marketing and evangelism. (I only wish we had a budget and large staff to carry this out.) For Brendan's strategy to work, we have to inform conmpanies, develpers, and others of these goals for Mozilla as not just a browser, but a platform. When the plan has been developed into its final form, could this vision be given a very prominate palce on the Mozilla.org web site. Could a press release be sent out to the releveant News sites/Magazines (tech and bussiness mags.)?

I think Brendan is on the correct path. We have to provide a reason for people to use Mozilla and its open standards. If we fail to provide a compelling reason, then many will simply default to the propritary MS/Windows offering effectively shutting out most non-Windows solutions. <an aside>Boy do I wish that judge had been able to break MS up.</an aside>