Shock as Microsoft Evangelist Robert Scoble Recommends Microsoft Technologies

Monday May 10th, 2004

Much has been made in recent days about Microsoft evangelist Robert Scoble and his comments about how Mozilla can take advantage of the new technologies introduced in Longhorn, the next major version of Windows. Scoble's thoughts on how Mozilla Firefox could be enhanced via features such as Avalon, Longhorn's new graphics layer, and WinFS, the enhanced file storage system, prompted InternetNews to conduct a follow-up interview, sparked a discussion at Slashdot and caused MozillaNews to quote almost enough to stretch the definition of fair use.

Which is interesting, as nothing Scoble said was particularly surprising. The fact that a Microsoft employee even mentioned Mozilla was a shock to some but it should be noted that Scoble, who was an established member of the weblogging community long before taking a job at Microsoft, was speaking for himself and not Redmond. Furthermore, Microsoft have recently started encouraging their employees to maintain weblogs, launching initiatives such as and Channel 9. In addition, while some media outlets reported that Scoble was offering advice to Mozilla, in reality he simply was recommending technologies whose widespread adoption would benefit Microsoft. At its core, this is a simply case of a Microsoft evangelist evangelising Microsoft. Nothing particularly surprising about that.

So far, the reaction from the Mozilla camp has been cool. While some features like WinFS and Avalon may be embraced in time, any evaluation is unlikely to take place until much closer to Longhorn's release. Meanwhile, technologies such as XAML (which, to be fair, Scoble is not advocating Mozilla adopt), have been met with outright hostility, with leading Mozilla figures viewing the proprietary XML user interface language as a threat to the freedom and interoperability of the Web.

#29 Re: IE developer on XUL and XAML

by Yacoubean

Wednesday May 12th, 2004 12:58 PM

You are replying to this message

Yeah, good point. Here is an example of a Microsoft developer praising a Mozilla technology, XUL. If I were a MozillaZine admin, I'd have a sizable list of google news alerts setup, and every day I'd scour these alerts for little tidbits like this. Blog posts like this are good news to Mozilla, but at the same time, they prove that Microsoft is paying attention to Mozilla and that they are mimicking a lot of our technology (or at least, trying to). We should be doing the same thing to them.

Answer me this: Why is it ok to make FireFox propriteary on the Linux platform (we switched from XUL to GTK), but its a huge evil to even think about leveraging some of the Windows code? I for one don't get it. And remember from my previous posts in this thread...I AM NOT A MICROSOFT APPOLOGIST. Please don't flame me and treat me like a Microsoftite. I am a die-hard Linux/Mozilla user (see my blog for proof, <>). I just care enough about Mozilla that I want to try to improve it.