MozillaZine

Full Article Attached Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

Thursday April 22nd, 1999

A recent Forbes article characterized Mozilla as a "flop". The article had so many inaccuracies that I felt a rebuttal was required. At the same time, I felt that some light needed to be shed on the differences between commercial Open Source projects and "all volunteer" Open Source projects. What follows (click "Full Article" below) is a rebuttal to the assertions in the Forbes article and my opinion on what can reasonably be expected from a commercial Open Source project.

As always, the opinions are my own, and do not reflect the opinions of mozilla.org (which MozillaZine is not affiliated with).


#1 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by SomeSmartAss <improv@magma.ca>

Thursday April 22nd, 1999 11:59 AM

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I still don't understand the "Army Of Coders = OpenSource Success" line of thinking. Thats Like Saying "More Lines Of Code = Better Software".

#2 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by SomeSmartAss <improv@magma.ca>

Thursday April 22nd, 1999 12:03 PM

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I still don't understand the "Army Of Coders = OpenSource Success" line of thinking. Thats Like Saying "More Lines Of Code = Better Software".

#3 Army of Coders etc.

by -=Yusuf=- <ssym@hippo.ru.ac.za>

Thursday April 22nd, 1999 12:56 PM

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SomeSmartAss,

To quote Eric S Raymond (or was it someone else?), "Given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow". If enough people are working on a project, it results in LESS code because problems are solved more efficiently (in less lines). The same argument as "two heads are better than one, and three heads are better than two, and four heads ... etc".

-=Yusuf=-

#4 Re: Evaluating Commercial... etc

by "Anonymous" Coward <mitchgould@generalpicture.com>

Thursday April 22nd, 1999 2:21 PM

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The less competant the reporter, the more he or she falls back on some melodramatic cliche, like "<whatever> is doomed." Meanwhile, the REAL story for journalists is whether Mozilla represents an open-source threat to Sun's client-side Java.

#5 Re: Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Albert LLanes

Thursday April 22nd, 1999 2:22 PM

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Regarding Josh McHugh's article entitled,"Open Sourcery" in Forbes Magazine:

Perhaps Josh should first educate himself on: 1) the need for standards on the internet and the compliance of the existing browsers, and 2) the time-table that Mozilla set for itself.

The promise of the Internet is that you can connect and participate whether you are on a Windows, Mac, Unix, OS/2, Linux, or BeOS machine. The Web has for the time being broken down the walls that have compartmentalized PC's and peoples to speaking to only their own kind.

By the introduction of non-approved standards into the browser and server side of the Web the communication of PC's and peoples will once again become fragmented which will be to the financial advantage of only the status-quo. Perhaps the Forbes author was ignorant of the big picture. Maybe for his next article he can stick to a strictly Wintel platform article to which he seems more predisposed?

Also note that Josh McHugh places a lot of importance no Zawinski's departure. However, Mozilla will go on without him just as Linux can continue without Linus or the Parliament without the Queen if need be. It seems Josh has no conception of the power of a grass roots movement.

It is essential that one of the browsers be 100% committed to complying with web standards. I am glad to see that this is the approach Mozilla is taking in the next version. In this light, the fact that someone else pre-released a browser that does not attempt to be 100% compliant with the first has no relevance.

Note: The opinions expressed here are my own and not necessarily those of an employer or group with which I may have and affiliation or membership.

#6 Re: Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Albert LLanes

Thursday April 22nd, 1999 2:22 PM

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Regarding Josh McHugh's article entitled,"Open Sourcery" in Forbes Magazine:

Perhaps Josh should first educate himself on: 1) the need for standards on the internet and the compliance of the existing browsers, and 2) the time-table that Mozilla set for itself.

The promise of the Internet is that you can connect and participate whether you are on a Windows, Mac, Unix, OS/2, Linux, or BeOS machine. The Web has for the time being broken down the walls that have compartmentalized PC's and peoples to speaking to only their own kind.

By the introduction of non-approved standards into the browser and server side of the Web the communication of PC's and peoples will once again become fragmented which will be to the financial advantage of only the status-quo. Perhaps the Forbes author was ignorant of the big picture. Maybe for his next article he can stick to a strictly Wintel platform article to which he seems more predisposed?

Also note that Josh McHugh places a lot of importance no Zawinski's departure. However, Mozilla will go on without him just as Linux can continue without Linus or the Parliament without the Queen if need be. It seems Josh has no conception of the power of a grass roots movement.

It is essential that one of the browsers be 100% committed to complying with web standards. I am glad to see that this is the approach Mozilla is taking in the next version. In this light, the fact that someone else pre-released a browser that does not attempt to be 100% compliant with the first has no relevance.

Note: The opinions expressed here are my own and not necessarily those of an employer or group with which I may have and affiliation or membership.

#7 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by pete collins <pcollins@ocsny.com>

Thursday April 22nd, 1999 3:10 PM

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i think being the underdog is a tremendous advantage!

:-)

#8 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by P.B.

Thursday April 22nd, 1999 3:56 PM

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There is one overriding way in which the forbes statement "mozilla is a flop", can be seen as absolutely, incontrovertibly true:

THERE IS NO STABLE SNAPSHOT!! And there doesn't seem to be any definate progress towards one, either.

Until that happens, mozilla is just a hobyists' toy. Completely beneath notice for people who are actually looking for a browser to USE.

mozilla is THE biggest argument AGAINST "open software is better". The official "netscape" browser is buggy, but it is so much LESS buggy than mozilla, it's shameful.

#9 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by arielb

Thursday April 22nd, 1999 4:15 PM

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#10 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Caustic <jdub@student.usyd.edu.au>

Thursday April 22nd, 1999 5:43 PM

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P.B.:

It's way pre-alpha! Whether it's open source or not - it still doesn't mean that a perfectly usable and useful binary will pop up from nowhere!

Sorry, but if you're looking for a browser to use, look at a Netscape download page.

If you're looking towards the future with a hunger for bug-killing, look to Mozilla.org

When will people stop expecting the current Mozilla to be anything other than ALPHA software?!?

#11 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by SomeSmartAss <improv@magma.ca>

Thursday April 22nd, 1999 8:58 PM

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"Given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow". While that is definately true of QA, and beta/alpha-testing; it is not necessarily so of coding. The more people you add to a code project, especially ones with limited/questionable C++ experience, the more bugs will appear; not to mention potential lost time as one or more people try to "re-invent the wheel", trying to all solve the same problem on their own. Then somebody else has to deside which versions (or which parts of which versions) to impliment. This isn't necessarily the case with Mozilla since they have some quite nice Bug-Tracking and assignment procedures, but the underlying philosophy behind an "Army of Coders" isn't justified. Sometimes "Too Many Cooks Spoil The Broth"

#12 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by arielb

Thursday April 22nd, 1999 9:43 PM

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yeah a million coders will just get confused as mozilla is still in progress. When we have a beta (I like to call July 20 Freedom Day) then we'll see more contributors because more people will be able to use mozilla as a real browser. However, there are companies that are interested in mozilla even at this stage. Neoplanet, Allaire, Sausage...quite a few I haven't discovered yet

#13 Why talk shit?

by noName

Thursday April 22nd, 1999 11:01 PM

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Why are some of you just so stupid?

Have you ever tried any pre-alpha software before?, well, they all are very buggy and not at all usefull unless you like to follow the development or contrubute.

And to say MoreCoders= Bad Code is just so crazy I don't know what to say, I suggest you read about the Cathedral and the Baazar and get a clue

#14 Mozilla has failed.

by Bruce Jensen <jensenba@silverlink.net>

Friday April 23rd, 1999 3:33 AM

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It is sad but true...

There is no way that Mozilla will be able to compete with Microsoft in the browser arena.

Mozillazine is nothing more than front to thwart negative public opinion on Mozilla... they want the last word on the matter.

Best of luck...

-Bruce

#15 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by mozineAdmin

Friday April 23rd, 1999 4:43 AM

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Bruce's comments were so intriguing I just had to respond.

>There is no way that Mozilla will >be able to compete with Microsoft >in the browser arena.

Interesting. What brings you to this conclusion? If Mozilla can't compete, can anyone? If other companies can, why is Mozilla different?

>Mozillazine is nothing more than front to thwart negative public opinion on Mozilla... they want the last word on the matter.

No, MozillaZine is run by me, and the opinions are my own. I'm not interested in thwarting negative public opinion as exposing the pathetic, biased reporting that passes for journalism. did you happen to watch the coverage during the day of the school shooting? Journalists passed of as facts (not as hearsay or innuendo) some of the most remarkable bullshit that I sat dumbfounded as I watched. What I see in the computer-industry news is just as bad, only on a smaller scale. The Forbes article was so rife with inaccuracies and blatant disinterest in "fact-finding" that it deserved more than just a rebuttal. It just so happens that Mozilla is an area of the industry that I happen to know something about. I keep up with the news, and speak with the developers often. If my actions were only that of a mouthpiece, I would have taken Jamie Z. up on his offer months ago to fold MozillaZine into mozilla.org. I wanted to be able to report independently, and not feel that my opinions (negative or positive) were being controlled by mozilla.org.

I happen to feel that it's too early to come to a conclusion about Mozilla's fate. I think everyone else who does either doesn't have the facts, or has an agenda. Please feel free to prove me wrong. But I would like to know what criteria you use to evaluate Mozilla's failure: what project do you have to compare it against? And don't say "Linux", because those two projects are as different as night and day. However, if you do persist in comparing Mozilla and Linux, I think you should really go back to the end of Linux's first year, and see what kind of support had built up around it. How many coders did they have working full time (on a payroll)? How many volunteers? How many people were testing? How many people had commit privileges?

Mozilla's rendering engine at pre-alpha stage beats the pants off of IE5. Prove me wrong. Mozilla's UI, although still in its infancy, has made amazing progress although it's cross-platform. And mozilla has the support of the web-developers out there who want a stable, small, standards-compliant browser. Will they allow it to fail? Time will tell. But it's way to soon to be writing an epitaph.

So, can I get the last word? I doubt it. However, I think it's interesting that some in the mainstream press actually find that my opinions aren't nonsense. If the computer industry cannot take alternate opinions, opinions that run counter to the pervailing thought of the day (which seem to quite often be shaped by the responses in Slashdot forums, of all things), then the industry is in sad shape.

And if you aren't willing to evaluate my opinions on their merits, then we really can't have a frank discussion at all. And I'm sorry for that.

#16 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Bruce Jensen <jensenba@silverlink.net>

Friday April 23rd, 1999 5:15 AM

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Thank you for taking the time to respond...

I wanted to hear what someone close to Mozilla would say in response to the previous statement I made... which isn't what I really think.

I agreed with your response 100%.

There is *no doubt* in my mind that Mozilla will be a smashing success!

Cheers,

-Bruce

#17 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by eMonk <kmg1@post.com>

Friday April 23rd, 1999 7:27 AM

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To put the couple of previous negative posts into perspective: If you're used to downloading shiny new debugged programs off the web then I guess I can understand the culture shock when someone who isn't familiar with Open Source looks at Mozilla, a work in progress. Especially since it's been getting so much ink lately. It seems natural that they might dub Mozilla a failure when they compare it to the way that they're used to trying out software that is at the very least in beta.

To those few I'd say read the Mozilla mission statement and go through the posts on MozillaZine. Then you'll have some frame of reference.

I wonder if any of other open source projects get similar criticism or is it just a byproduct of Mozilla being a commercial app that is being developed in the open.

#18 Re:Shit Speak

by SomeSmartAss <improv@magma.ca>

Friday April 23rd, 1999 7:36 AM

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noName,

I Never said "More Coders=Bad Code", I just said that "More Coders != OpenSource Success".

All the "Mozilla is Dead" critisism seems to pivot around three major gripes.

a) no realease after a year. Which can be attributed to the complete redesign of the rendering engine, and the fact that this group is deftly determined on getting it right the first time. These are, in the long run, good things.

b) no Army of Coders. And its this point that realy throws me... because the concept makes no sence. I would rather have a small group of dedicated indeviduals than an ocean of half-assed slackers anyday. Quantity never equals quality. Bigger isn't better. Why should More Coders automatically mean Better Code?

c) JWZ resigned, because of the first two reasons, so they MUST be true. (some-one should kick JWZ in the nads for that!!)

This opinion that Bigger/Sooner is always better is not neccesarily a good measure for success.

Anyways, I'd like to know how many people worked on Linux the first year IT came out.

#19 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Bruce <jensenba@silverlink.net>

Friday April 23rd, 1999 7:47 AM

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Can anybody here tell me what they think MS's strategy is by *not* producing a standards compliant browser? Especially since it is well known that Mozilla is doing a damn good job of supporting the standards.

Thanks.

-Bruce

#20 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by SomeSmartAss <improv@magma.ca>

Friday April 23rd, 1999 7:56 AM

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How many MS coders does it take to change a lightbulb?

None. They make darkness the industry standard.

MS never follows standards, because their used to forcing people to use theirs. Its not a stratigy, its an inherint way of doing business at MS. "We're Microsoft! Everyone will HAVE to use our version!"

#21 more shit :)

by noName

Friday April 23rd, 1999 8:04 AM

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To say no release after a year is a failiure is wrong, since you can get releases every day, and since it takes longer time than just a year - and even lots more with the cathedral model who you seems to like...

The army of coders argument, I can't understand, mozilla is an open-open project, everyone can contribute and not just an closed circle of few dedicated developers, mozilla got hundreds of dedicated programers plus anyone else who wants to participate ; what is wrong with that ????

The thing cathedral people don't get is that everyone can contribute without creating chaos, without disturbing the dedicated people, it makes the development faster; wait and see...

One person resigns and suddenly everyones think this is the sign of a failiure, please tell me why?, one person, no matter how good meens nothing to mozilla in the end.

The people who critisice mozilla for no release should think about W2K(winDOS 2000) The people who think it is buggy should bare in mind that linux has been developed for way longer time than just one year The people who just think adding features is bloat should go to hell, and then think about that this project is open, and everyone can and do, add the features they like

#22 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Mr Z

Friday April 23rd, 1999 8:42 AM

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re MozillaZine Admin's statement: " And mozilla has the support of the web-developers out there who want a stable, small, standards-compliant browser. Will they allow it to fail? Time will tell. But it's way to soon to be writing an epitaph."

As a web developer (but by no means the only one) I really want Mozilla released ASAP. It will be good for me, it will be good for my clients and it will be good for the industry. But what is best for everybody doesn't guarantee success.

Even if every professional web developer pushed Mozilla, it won't guarantee success. The end users will determine it's success and as I look upon the average computer drone who uses Windows become the average internet user I am not very hopeful. Combined with IE being required for nearly every new MS product I doubt Mozilla will make much of an impact, especially in the enterprise.

I am constantly reminded of the Nazi who said "Tell a lie long enough and people will believe it."

As a developer I want Mozilla to stick to 100% standards compliance, but I also see everyday without Mozilla as a day that IE picks up more users and developers. That underlying fear is what pervades so many of these "Mozilla is a flop" articles even if that is not the intention. Unfortunately, I think it will take something beyond the means of the hardworking Mozilla supporters to overcome the ennui.

Respectfully,

------ As a wish, please release your Milestones with support for a proxy so I can actually use the release to view pages. :)

#23 Mozilla vs IE

by naaah

Friday April 23rd, 1999 8:50 AM

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OKey, lets say IE get more users, and more support, despite its low-class -- We would still have an open-source browser. Thats much better than if just netscape continued in the old way, releasing buggy and big applications and loosing more and more to IE. Now we got a living and open project that hasn't got profit as it sole goal, we have alredy won!

#24 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Bruce <jensenba@silverlink.net>

Friday April 23rd, 1999 10:01 AM

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Mr.Z just hit the nail right on the head...

It doesn't really matter what web designers think of any particular browser... it's the users who will, collectively, determine it's success.

-Bruce

#25 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by AnonCoward

Friday April 23rd, 1999 11:21 AM

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While mozilla may not be a failure in the eye's of people working on the project or waiting for the final code, it is easy to see the point of view where it was a failure to Netscape.

Mozilla may succeed while netscape fails.

#26 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Son of Anonymous Coward

Friday April 23rd, 1999 12:29 PM

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Mozilla as an open-sourced project that is making progress and meeting schedule deadlines. Netscape(i.e. AOL) as a commercial entity that produces a browser is not making progress. Therefore, Netscape may be a "commercial flop" while Mozilla showing signs of successful progress. Netscape should have released an interim version of it's browser that was not based on Mozilla's progress. This would have allowed Netscape/AOL to remain competitive with Microsoft in the browser arena.

#27 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Son of Anonymous Coward

Friday April 23rd, 1999 12:29 PM

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Mozilla as an open-sourced project that is making progress and meeting schedule deadlines. Netscape(i.e. AOL) as a commercial entity that produces a browser is not making progress. Therefore, Netscape may be a "commercial flop" while Mozilla showing signs of successful progress. Netscape should have released an interim version of it's browser that was not based on Mozilla's progress. This would have allowed Netscape/AOL to remain competitive with Microsoft in the browser arena.

#28 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by arielb

Friday April 23rd, 1999 3:58 PM

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I don't see Netscape losing. They're gaining Netcenter members. They're gaining ICQ users. Plus the fact there are more non-MS servers than MS (such as Apache and Netscape) hosting websites. I don't think MS will be able to control the internet by the time Netscape 5 arrives

#29 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Randy Crawford <rlc@ncsa.uiuc.edu>

Friday April 23rd, 1999 4:50 PM

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I'm amazed by the responses I see here. In what possible way can Mozilla be considered a success?

Of course, it can't. The real point is that it's probably too soon to say it's a failure.

But unbridled enthusism for Open Source is no substitute for common sense. So far, Mozilla has chewed up about $20 million dollars in resources (130 X $150,000/year), and it has not kept up with the competition. And that's the real question -- can open source compete head-to-head with the big, bad, so-called best of the proprietary-source products?

So far, the Forbes article is undeniably correct -- Mozilla is losing the race with Microsoft. What does Mozilla's lack of success bode for Open Source? Selectively, it may mean that those products that depend on short time-to-market may be unable to compete with tightly managed commercial products. It's too soon to tell. But there *is* writing on the wall. And I think the Forbes article did a fine job of updating business managers of that fact.

#30 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by arielb

Friday April 23rd, 1999 5:01 PM

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No Randy, it means you pay a price when you decide to rewrite the whole thing. It has nothing to do with open source.

#31 ARRRRRGHHHHHH, quit the shit

by Name?

Friday April 23rd, 1999 6:08 PM

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Why say mozilla lags behind it's competitors (which is only microsoft. ) In what way does it lag?? - well none!

Have you even tried a nightly-build?, everything is getting implemented and fixed in a extreme rate. You notice great differences every week and it even beat IE in some areas. Then a pre-alpha can beat a fitht version of another browser its relly not a failiure, get real!!!!

#32 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Kovu <Kovu401@netscape.net>

Friday April 23rd, 1999 11:03 PM

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Oh, give up PB. That you judge pre-beta software in such a way is ignorant, pure and simple. and saying "until such and such happens" when there is a definite timetable for such to happen is just dumb. If you don't like it go eat crow with IE's blundering, mammoth waste. Mozilla's browser FITS ON ONE FLOPPY! ... I give up. If you don't see the promise in this program you either don't want to or you're not looking hard enough.

#33 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Kovu <Kovu401@netscape.net>

Friday April 23rd, 1999 11:16 PM

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No Mr. Z, AOL will make DAMN SURE Netscape 5.0 is a success. They have the clout to do it.

How's IE5 doing? Has anybody heard it hit the 2 million mark yet? No, the first million came fairly quick, where's the rest?

#34 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by macpeep

Saturday April 24th, 1999 1:41 AM

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Has anybody heard that IE5 would NOT have it the 2M mark yet? No, because it probably followed so quickly after the 1M mark.

Mozilla will not win by people underestimating the competition. Drop the naive attitudes - please.

Has it occured to anyone that IE5 is the best browser available right now - by far. The only reasons to not download it would be politics or lazyness. Both are silly reasons.

Don't get me wrong - I'm all for Mozilla. I wouldn't be here on this site if I wasn't. But we have to stop walking around with closed eyes shouting "M$ sucks", "IE sucks", "M$ coders / quality sucks".

The same reality check would be good for all of you who don't understand that Mozilla is in early alpha stages.

#35 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by macpeep

Saturday April 24th, 1999 1:44 AM

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I just checked CNET's browsers.com and they list 4,062,596 downloads for IE5 so far. And that's only on one download site. Not to mention that from my download alone, four other people have installed it.

#36 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Ganesh C. Prasad <g.c.prasad@usa.net>

Saturday April 24th, 1999 2:48 AM

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Mozilla may take another 4 months to appear, or 6, or 12.

But when it does, it'll be the browser to beat all browsers. There's absolutely no doubt about that.

The important thing is not to get the developers into a deadline mentality. No software project does well when they're coding to deadlines, whether it's Open Source or Closed Source.

Gnome found out the hard way with their "1.0" release which was more a "0.9". They shouldn't have targetted the LinuxWorld Expo for their release. They should have released it when it was ready.

Dear Mozilla developers, don't bother what the world says. Keep on quietly coding. When the product is ready, we'll all know. Best regards, and more power to you,

Ganesh C. Prasad

#37 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by HoserHead <hoserhead@woot.net>

Saturday April 24th, 1999 10:23 AM

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The only reason not to use IE5 is politics or laziness? How about "I don't like IE?" (and I don't.) How about "I don't run Windows?" (and, most of the time, I don't.) The fact is that people will use what works best for them. If web developers all suddenly started using XML, CSS1, HTML4, etc., and nothing backwards-compatible, many (advanced) people would switch to milestone releases of Mozilla, because, simply put, nothing else does CSS, XML, HTML, etc., better. The availability of the best browser for these things - open standards - which is Mozilla - will allow web developers to finally ditch proprietary things and use real standards, and not worry about whether it'll display.

#38 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Tekhir

Saturday April 24th, 1999 10:30 AM

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IE downloads are misleading. MS currently tracks downloads of its browser by the # of attempted downloads of the install program. Hell, I count for like 8 downloads because I've cancelled and download different version of the program. And btw its minial install size is bull. Without IE 4 istalled on the compute the min install takes about 40 MB. With IE or another version of Ie 5 it takes 7.5 MB.

Mozilla may not be ready for prime time but within the last week or two 3/4 projects or programs have added support for it. That means its won already, people are usig the layout engine.

#39 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Henrik <Lynggaard@netscape.net>

Saturday April 24th, 1999 1:05 PM

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One thing the MS bashers forget is the difference between end users and developpers. Mozilla might be the best browser for nerds and developpers right now, but IE is certainly the best for mr. and mrs. smith (age 55 and 50) who just bought thier first computer with preinstalled windows.

please don't be as arrogant as some of the linux users who I know that doesn't understand market segments, and think linux is the best for everything

When mozilla hit the shelfes so to speak, it will be a whole different ballgame and it certainly be a success, IF and only if you can persuade the end users grey mass to spend the time downloading a new program when * Mozillaisn't interated with windows * they allready have a functioning program * are satisfied with what they have (especially newbiw end users)

#40 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Ariya Hidayat <ariya77@yahoo.com>

Saturday April 24th, 1999 1:47 PM

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Mr. Z, looks like you don't love Mozilla builds. If you do, you'll easily know that to support proxy connection, is just by putting your 'prefs.js' from your old Nav4 to Mozilla bin directory. Whether Mozilla will win or lose, I'll be very happy to have a lightweight HTML renderer, which - as I am a developer myself - will be useful for many purposes (do you know that commercial not-100%-standard HTML renderer can cost more that $100 ?).

#41 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Kovu <Kovu401@netscape.net>

Saturday April 24th, 1999 5:45 PM

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M$ sucks", "IE sucks", "M$ coders / quality sucks

#42 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Kovu <Kovu401@netscape.net>

Saturday April 24th, 1999 5:54 PM

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actually I did d/l IE5--because my stupid IE4 is corrupt and won't properly uninstall because MS felt they had to make it "part of the OS" to save their sorry asses in court. I don't care how good it renders, go to the help screen and you'll see it credits Mosaic. The only thing MS about IE is how they've BOTCHED up Mosaic. I'm sure they'll do the same with Mozilla.

#43 Recap

by pete collins <pcollins@ocsny.com>

Saturday April 24th, 1999 9:05 PM

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well as far as ie5 goes i installed it to check out the egg thing then quickly uninstalled it because it kept crashing my machine(nothing but blue screens from now on!)-the microsoft song-

as to the average mr and mrs smith the end user i hate to tell you but guess what their email adress is: <mrSmith@aol.com>

as to: "Unfortunately, I think it will take something beyond the means of the hardworking Mozilla supporters to overcome the ennui."

how about full functioning web applications for mr and mrs intranet, portal, isp etc . . that will be unlike anything seen before on the web.

a fully standard complient cross platform web cleint environment that will rival the promises of java

good things come to those who wait.

#44 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by arielb

Saturday April 24th, 1999 9:12 PM

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that's right...we have AOL for the newbies and I'm assuming AOL 5 will use mozilla. Anyway, less talk and more action-I just found 2 more companies that will use mozilla and hopefully mozillazine will put up the news soon

#45 History will repeat itself...

by Rick H.

Saturday April 24th, 1999 10:12 PM

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Looks like Mozilla is going to come out of the gate just like Netscape... arrogant, cocky, and full of themselves.

Sadly, they're going to end up just like Netscape... squashed by Microsoft.

I wonder if the then crippled Mozilla will go whining to the DOJ just like Netscape did.

#46 what?

by noTroll

Sunday April 25th, 1999 3:13 AM

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Looks like you threw out a flame-bait, Mozilla is the worse thing you can do against microsoft, It's open, and developed relatively open and its goal is to be supporting standards 100%. And luckely they will end upp with microsofts domination attemts squashed and wiped out.

How about that, troll?

M$ sucks IE sucks M$ coders are hores and their quality sucks

#47 Re:What?

by Rick H.

Sunday April 25th, 1999 7:55 AM

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You just made my point.

#48 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Henrik <Lynggaard@netscape.net>

Sunday April 25th, 1999 8:18 AM

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AOL for the newbies ????

THATS ONLY IN AMERICA!!!!!

how about the rest of the world ???? like europe,asia (china)

#49 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by arielb

Sunday April 25th, 1999 9:42 AM

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mozilla developers are too busy coding to be posting anti-MS stuff on mozillazine. I don't see how a little 'fun' on this thread spells doom for the project. On the other hand, I went to microsoft.com and they're touting this highly flawed MS sponsored study as 'proof' that Windows is faster than linux.

#50 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Anonymous Cowah

Sunday April 25th, 1999 10:32 AM

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Henrik: the Americans are busy patting themselves on the backs like always. They don't care about the rest of the world.

#51 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by arielb

Sunday April 25th, 1999 3:12 PM

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AOL isn't just for America (despite what the A in AOL implies). Anyway, there's something very powerful in XUL - it makes localizing to all platforms much easier. People will easily translate mozilla to thai and catalan just to give 2 examples

#52 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Tekhir

Sunday April 25th, 1999 9:16 PM

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AOL is in Germany although they claim some German ISP is using unfair practices to keep them from being number one.

#53 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Mr Z

Monday April 26th, 1999 10:38 AM

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Mr Collins:

"as to the average mr and mrs smith the end user i hate to tell you but guess what their email adress is: <mrSmith@aol.com>"

What does their email address have to do with their willingness to download more software that (in their minds) does the same thing that is already on their computer? Again, people seem to think that most end users care about their browsers. They don't. They just want a browser that displays their pages fast. They don't know what goes on behind the scenes. Human nature dictates people won't go out of their way unless they see a benefit. Saying "Mozilla is 100% standards compliant" means nothing to these people. There has to be some demonstrable benefit to end users to get them to switch. And for Windows users it will be even more difficult to get them to convert. After all, if everybody went to the best thing then wouldn't *everybody* be using Netscape or IE 4 (or iCab/Opera/Neoplanet) by now?

Even if what you say is true it doesn't matter since AOL has said they wil continue to use IE as their render engine for the remainder of their contract (which IIRC is another 2 years). If they ship Mozilla on their CDs will the average user install it? You can bet that the AOL browser will be the default install and as I said, IE is already on the vast majority of user's (windows) machines.

Let's make no mistake AOL bought Netscape for their web portal, not the browser. They let Sun have all the server software. They may use Gecko for some future products, but that is not a web browser.

"as to: "Unfortunately, I think it will take something beyond the means of the hardworking Mozilla supporters to overcome the ennui." "

"how about full functioning web applications for mr and mrs intranet, portal, isp etc . . that will be unlike anything seen before on the web."

More promises of vaporware. Who cares about the future when my business requires I develop stuff *now*? I have spent 14 months developing web applications for intranet use on Netscape 4. It would be much much easier to develop for IE4 than Netscape 4, but we went with the open standards approach for a reason. Of course development required lots of kludges to get things to run right. When it comes down to business decisions 90% compliance now wins out over 100% compliance sometime in the indeterminate future.

I am not saying I agree with these views and as I stressed I am behind Mozilla both for practical and philosophical reasons. But as a developer who deals with the average computer user daily I have little hope that the masses will accept Mozilla when they already have IE on their machines. To educate the end users and corporate managers who determine enterprise software (not the developers or the coders that sites like this cater to) that it is in their best interests to use Mozilla after release, is the real task.

#54 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by SomeSmartAss <improv@magma.ca>

Monday April 26th, 1999 11:42 AM

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"There has to be some demonstrable benefit to end users to get them to switch."

- Smaller footprint (more space on hard drive, which is important on older machines)

- allows them to change the UI (being able to customize the look and feel of something, even if its with wookie heads, makes it fell more "mine", look at NeoPlanet)

- not suseptable to the Melissa virus. (fear of viruses is more previlant than actual virus attacks. How many "Don't open any e-mail entitled ....!!! it will automatically destroy your hard drive!!!!" messages do you get a month?)

- my son/daughter (in-law) who works for that big computer company said it was better. (deciples, start your bible thumping NOW!!!)

just a couple I could think of.

#55 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Tekhir

Monday April 26th, 1999 5:15 PM

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Another reasofew more reasons:

Mozilla also has a cute little mascott.

local and lare ISPs may include NS on disk. I got Netscape 2 and 3 that way.

#56 Re:Evaluating Commercial Open Source Projects

by Matt K

Sunday May 2nd, 1999 7:46 PM

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Here's a novel thought. If you want to win, why not fight fire with fire. Microsoft bundles IE with every version of windows, but AOL bundles IE with its product as well, WHY? It makes no sense at all. For Mozilla to be a commercial success, Netscape/AOL needs to do four things: marketing, marketing, more marketing, and bundling Mozilla with AOL. It is obvious, but it needs to be said.