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Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Mozilla

Monday November 1st, 1999

Mike Cusumano, writer of the Computerworld article that was much derided in our forum has taken a fresh look at Mozilla, and in his latest article at Computerworld has come to a different conclusion. I would like to thank him for having the fortitude to revisit Mozilla, and for posting his apology in his column.


#1 Reaction

by Kovu <Kovu401@netscape.net>

Monday November 1st, 1999 8:32 AM

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I liked the updated article much better. Thanks are due to Mike for being a true journalist in this matter. As to Navigator, it's due into beta December 15th, we can but hope. To me at least, the benefits for Navigator are fairly obvious -- the new code. Also, the cross-platform nature of the code will save developers huge amounts of time later, while granted it has taken some time to do this. But it's worth it.

As to Navigator retaking the browser market, I don't know if it's really relevant. Any company can take Mozilla code and make a browser out of it. I think that while the Navigator browser will do well (especially once AOL really starts slinging it around on CDs again), the browser war will fragment into Mozilla children running to and fro, especially in light of how modular and embeddable Mozilla is and the push for Internet appliances. In short, I think Mozilla will take IE, but I don't know that Navigator will ever have a 70+ market share again. But so long as Microsoft doesn't dominate any longer with IE and its jaded, proprietary leanings, I'm happy.

#2 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Monday November 1st, 1999 9:01 AM

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I think it's pretty crucial that Mozilla retakes a large chunk of market share from IE. If it doesn't, most web developers will not bother to check their pages in both IE and Mozilla, and Mozilla users will suffer. Maybe a lot of webmasters will use Mozilla as a reference for their designs because of its standards-compliance, but from my experience most webmasters just develop for what's most used out there.

The good news is that M10 is excellent. I really can't wait to see the full 1.0 release, and I'm sure many people will use it. What's more, a lot of other products are looking at using the Mozilla engine.

As long as Microsoft doesn't make pages look totally different on IE, forcing people to choose beteen real standards and MS' de-facto standards, Mozilla will surely be successful.

#3 Dec 15th

by leafdigital

Monday November 1st, 1999 9:16 AM

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I thought the December date was for a Mozilla beta - not a Netscape beta, which I assumed would be a short while later? Or is Dec 15th the Netscape beta release date...?

Just wondering if there was an "official" navigator date.

--sam

#6 Dec 15th

by Kovu <Kovu401@netscape.net>

Monday November 1st, 1999 11:52 AM

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The difference is minimal. Once Mozilla hits beta, so too will Netscape. Netscape is currently working on the portions of the browser that won't be part of Mozilla, and will slap those on there. I think you can count Dec. 15th the date for both browsers at this point. If Mozilla gets set back, then they both will.

#4 Much more balanced

by Anon

Monday November 1st, 1999 9:20 AM

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Cusumano has written a much more researched and balanced article this time. His criticisms are fair, given the time that everyone has had to wait for Mozilla to produce anything truly useful. However, I believe that we'll see a lot of interest when this finally goes beta.

Go Mozilla!! :)

#5 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by wheezy

Monday November 1st, 1999 10:54 AM

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Mr. Cusumano's brief article is certainly a better, more even-handed and well-research article than his previous. He stands his ground yet, but is more educated.

Still, it seems as though he still damns Mozilla with faint praise. Not everybody, of course, is required by law to be ecstatic about Mozilla, but it seemed as if his viewpoint was in a more transitional state: "the jury is still out." But regardless of the general attitude he has about the project, it is wonderful that he realizes the significance and relationship between open source and the commercial and industrial sectors, a relationship discussed by open source advocates and information technology executives alike, which has found little agreement...

#7 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Monday November 1st, 1999 1:21 PM

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What concerns me not about this article in particular is the fact that the writer is a professor at MIT's Sloan School of Business, a very renowned institution of education. Simple, basic research at the mozilla.org website would have given him ample background into the current status of mozilla and explanations as to the cause of the delays of the future Navigator. Though he does admit fault in his previous article, the quality as well as quantity of work put into each article is a matter of greater concern. After all, if he has been convincingly argued on so many rudimentary points about mozilla, what else did he not bother to discuss in his other articles?

#11 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Monday November 1st, 1999 4:27 PM

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Good point. I write an opinion column and write it quickly. I don't always do new "research." In the Mozilla case, I just ignored or dismissed progress reports. I will not do this again, I assure you, whatever the pressures to deliver a column.

Michael Cusumano

#13 If only....

by FrodoB

Monday November 1st, 1999 7:27 PM

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If only C|net and ZDNet were as open-minded as you. :)

#8 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by bmetzler <bmetzler@pluto.twistedpair.net>

Monday November 1st, 1999 1:32 PM

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I'm glad that he admitted that Open Source development is not a "free" lunch. Nothing is free, and I think it hurts the perception of open source, for critics to portray it as a "free lunch."

-Brent

#16 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 3:36 AM

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You said in a nutshell... nothing is free.

And the illusion underlying 'Open Source' is exactly that.

#9 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Monday November 1st, 1999 2:29 PM

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Hey, not to change the subject, but does anyone have the Mike Pinkerton Mozilla 4 mac transcript from last friday?

#12 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Monday November 1st, 1999 4:28 PM

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Yeah! Where is the transcript?

#27 It seems to be here...

by basic <_basic@yahoo.com>

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 3:21 PM

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It's here:<http://www.mozillazine.or…chats/1999-10-29-MAC.html> if I'm not mistaken. Jsut that they don't have a link to it yet.

#28 RE It seems to be here...

by basic <_basic@yahoo.com>

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 3:23 PM

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#29 RE It seems to be here...

by basic <_basic@yahoo.com>

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 3:23 PM

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#24 Developer Chat Log will be posted soon.

by asa <asa@mozilla.org>

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 9:04 AM

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The admins are working on it.

#10 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by KaiRo <KaiRo@KaiRo.at>

Monday November 1st, 1999 2:29 PM

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OK. He is still sceptical. And he is allowed to, a lot of people are. It's mozilla.org's job to convince him and all the others out there.

But mozilla.org and all of us Mozilla fans, we only can show them what this browser (and mail client, and so on) is when it's finally released. "The jury is still out", as Mr. Cusumano wrote.

And I agree with him saying "The Mozilla team still has something to prove. It needs to finish and deliver a product."

And I believe the product will be really convincing a lot of people out there.

#14 This place is a joke.

by Anon

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 3:11 AM

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I read the original article and I read the last one...

I'm almost ashamed to have ever been a Netscape user after reading the dialog as of late from this forum. Does any 'regular' here have any idea that to a typical user you seem fanatical?

In case onyone out there is wondering what the public sentiment of mozilla is... a group of individuals with a misaligned hatred towards a software company that ended up making our experience on the internet a whole easier and faster.

#17 This place is a joke.

by Anon

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 4:36 AM

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Yes, the software company that made the most user-friendly pair of handcuffs the Internet has ever seen. Wear them happily and with pride, dear babe in the wood. That is one thing the Open Source world can never make.

#19 Ditto!

by Anon

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 4:59 AM

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You are right... Yes... our lives have been deeply affected by such ostrocities... NOT!!!

#20 Microsoft is the joke!

by Anon

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 5:34 AM

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Microsoft... the company that will do everything in it's power to get a 100% monopoly of the Internet, and then turn around and milk that monopoly (and your pocket) for every dollar it's worth.

Microsoft... the company that gave us DOS (instead of UNIX), Windows 3.1 (instead of Macintosh OS), ActiveX (instead of Java), the Microsoft Network (MSN) instead of the Internet.

Microsoft... the company that has hardly contributed anything to the world of quality software. The company that has never invented anything significant by itself, and has always needed to buy out other software companies to get decent products.

Microsoft: "Inferior software by design".

#21 Microsoft is the joke!

by Anon

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 5:40 AM

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Microsoft... the company that tried to put it's only significant Internet browser competitor, Netscape, out of business though anti-competitive practices. Hopefully the US justice department will win the antitrust court case and take action against this corporate monster!!

#37 Microsoft is the joke!

by Tanyel <tanyel@straightblack.com>

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 11:29 PM

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If Microsoft didn't create a web browser, wouldn't we all be stuck with Netscape 4.7? Would Netscape have taken the time to create Mozilla if they weren't forced to do it by Microsoft? I am starting to get tired of waiting.

#22 Platform Dependence

by dneighbors <derek@forchrist.com>

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 7:06 AM

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That is all I have to say. I would have never even given Mozilla a second look if Internet Explorer could run on Linux.

As we move more and more of our clients are adapting linux we are starting to write software that needs to be platform independent.

This can only be achieved by companies non-biased to platform and open to peer review. I don't care for Microsoft, but that is not why I chose Mozilla.

In fact 80% of our customers will be using Mozilla on Windows. I think the people involved with Mozilla are fanatical because they is something to be excited about. (much like Linux fans)

How can you get fanatical over a software company that totally ignores you and treats you like an ATM machine. (Microsoft)

Sorry if this post is "fanatical", but I am pretty excited about what Mozilla has to offer.

#23 This place is a joke.

by Anon

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 8:41 AM

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I am not fanatical, and I should point out that I use IE on a daily basis. However, that said, I am one for competition, even if it means rooting for the underdog. Microsoft has proven time and time again that it has no intention of allowing competition to survive if it has its way.

MS-DOS, which was what Windows started on, was a company that was originally bought out by Microsoft. This company continues this tradition to this day, and if we were to allow them to force a 25meg browser onto all Windows users (given that most estimates place Windows usage at roughly 90% of desktops WORLDWIDE), it hardly makes sense for anyone else to waste yet more space with another browser, unless they were interested in keeping Microsoft even vaguely honest. To continue to progress of technology.

We wouldn't be seeing the competition there is in the #D graphics accelerator market if it weren't for the fierce competition. We wouldn't be seeing the massive price cuts in CPUs if it weren't for AMD and others. We wouldn't see Microsoft rushing its latest products if it didn't think that Linux (or some other operating system) were not threatening its userbase. Windows wouldn't have been even developed if it weren't for the graphical interface being invented beforehand.

I eagerly await Mozilla, because it transcends dependence upon technologies that are only open to those that use one platform.

Most of the internet is NOT based on Windows, and the Internet is NOT something invented by Microsoft. Internet Explorer is based on someone else's browser technology, and I believe I've made my point.

#30 This place is a joke.

by Tekhir

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 4:14 PM

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I used to use IE with NS, but now I only check my webpage on IE. IE physically damaged my OS with its security bugs. And caused me to reinstall everything.

Netscape my have bugs, but I've never seen it trash an OS.

#25 Really?

by url <urlradio@yahoo.com>

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 10:31 AM

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For someone who now has such hatred towards Mozilla and Netscape in general, you sure went out of your way to check out this website to see what us "fanatics" have been up to. With curiousity like yours, we must be doing something right. ;)

"Fanatical" about Mozilla, huh? Considering the alternative, I'll wear that title as a badge of honor.

#26 You, my friend, are the joke...

by Quabb

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 3:01 PM

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It is a wonder that we waste our time responding to the baseless comments of someone unwilling to back up their comments with a name, but rather resign themselves to the badge of anonymous.

I too wear the badge of fanatic with pride and honor, and wait for the day I have a browser I can just "develop" with and not "hack around."

"Failure is not an option. It is bundled with your Microsoft Product." -- I read that in someone's .sig at some point and thought it was funny.

#31 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 6:57 PM

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You've *never* seen Netscape trash the OS?

I sure have, shortly after being to a sight that invoked Netscape's JVM. When I exit Netscape an unkillable (on Win9X) thread exists that forces me to CTRL-ALT-DELETE twice to reboot! Fortunatley, on NT the thread is killable.

Another screwed up thing is when it just decides to hang around in memory after I've exited, sometimes as a visible task other time as a hidden task.

My experience with IE5 has been very good so far. It's fast, stable, customizable, and feature rich.

Hopefully, Mozilla will catch up. I really hope they change their default UI though.

#33 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 7:24 PM

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In win98 you don't have to reboot to get rid of it. Press ctrl-alt-del->end task. Then repeate this 3-4 times. It will go away.

I'm not sure if you have to end task multiple times (You might just have to wait 10-20 seconds... not sure)

#39 IE stable? definition being?

by Anon

Wednesday November 3rd, 1999 6:25 AM

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I've used IE since it was first packaged with Win95 right through to IE5, and also Netscape from version 3 (roughly).

Netscape has its bugs, and so does IE, but my experience with Netscape has been that it has managed to die, but not bring down the entire Windows shell. IE has brought down the entire shell on me. In both cases, it's been Java (as far as I can tell), where disabling Java fixes the problem.

In any case, IE's nice tight "integration" with Windows allows it to load faster than Netscape. Probably the main reason why I use it on a daily basis now.

#43 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Wednesday November 3rd, 1999 7:51 PM

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Yep, these things have happened to me as well and the problem seems to be Java related. I thought it was just my machine but now I see it is not.

Netscape causes an error upon exiting and the message says the program will be shut down but pressing O.K. will just generate a new error message and this continues in an endless loop requiring a reboot.

The problem with Netscape remaining in memory is (I believe) Java related also. Someone really needs to go in and fix these bugs ASAP.

#32 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 7:01 PM

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Locking an OS is not the same as trashing the OS. I've had IE 4 and IE 5 installs basicly damage the computer enough to the point that it would no longer boot.

#34 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 7:41 PM

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The JVM related hanging thread can't be killed in Win9X... only in NT.

If you try ending the task eventually you'll just get a blue screen and have to do a cold reboot.

The other, more common, Netscape hangs that aren't related to the NSJVM are killable, though.

I'm sorry to the other guy about IE trashing his/her system. What happened? I've never had an incident like that before. I'm just curious.

Thanks.

#35 That was me

by Tekhir

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 8:26 PM

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I believe it was an ActiveX control that did my system in. The weird thing is I swear I turned ActiveX off in IE. But anyway on was on a website and all of the suden my system froze. It had been a while since my computer locked up, normally its very stable.

So I rebooted but it kept crashing after about 5 minutes. I booted from a floppy into QNX and DOS, both of whihed worked fine. I even did several virus scans, but no luck. At that point I thought it was a hardware problem. But after about a day I couldn't find anything wrong. I finally ended up reinstalling everything and it has worked fine every since.

I blame IE's security model. Its a good browser, I think Mozilla will be better but that depends on its final preformance.

#36 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Tuesday November 2nd, 1999 9:36 PM

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Thanks for sharing that. I once accidentally enabled the 'download unsigned ax control' setting when I meant to change it from 'prompt' to 'disable'.

I found out what I had done wrong when some homemade ax control automatically ran in my browser!! I was lucky it wasn't anything destructive... very lucky! It turned out being some type of tic-tac-toe kinda game!

#38 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Wednesday November 3rd, 1999 12:03 AM

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Yes, we'd all be using Netscape.. and paying $50 a pop for it to boot. Then again, Netscape would still have money to pay decent programmers to improve their product and not sell out to AOL. Unfortunatley, that is not the case.

Mozilla.org though is seperate from Netscape and very well could have evolved regardless.

Things are going a bit slow because of it's open source nature. They will have a product eventually so don't worry.

Linux has evolved fairly rapidly and it's open source as well... but all they are really doing is modeling a 20+ year old OS. Mozilla.org doesn't have that luxury.

#40 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by thelem

Wednesday November 3rd, 1999 2:19 PM

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Yes, I think it is important that a 'Quick Launch' application is developed for Mozilla, many people like IE's load speed.

If it is implemented then I think that you should be able to disable it by removing a shortcut from the start menu or using checkbox in the preferances.

#41 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Wednesday November 3rd, 1999 2:57 PM

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To the guy who mentioned IE bringing down the shell...

Make sure that 'Browse in new process' is checked in the advanced options of IE5. It is by default, but I don't think it is in IE4.

Basically, with this setting, if IE crashes for whatever reason the shell won't be affected. Of course, if you're using Win95/NT w/o the dektop update... or Win98 with ROM II/98Lite, then the shell is seperate from the browser anyways.

#42 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Wednesday November 3rd, 1999 3:21 PM

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While I'm at it, another little tip for any of the Win98 users out there:

Personally, I don't care for the 'web view' nonsense... for some people that are into graphics it's handy for previewing many images... but for me it's just an annoyance and makes opening folders sluggish. Even when I turn the 'feature' off it will come back again... typically after installing a new program that pops open a new program group.

The solution? Delete *all* of the *.htt files in the c:\windows\web folder. The result? Your folders will open up *fast* just like with the Win95 shell. Keep in mind that, although you'll still be able to customize any given folder, web view will no longer function. So you may want to back up the the *.htt files just to be safe. Personally, I don't.

#44 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Wednesday November 3rd, 1999 9:18 PM

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Hey uh.. it's been almost a week. Any chance of seeing the Mike Pinkerton transcript from last Friday?

Thanks.

#45 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Wednesday November 3rd, 1999 9:43 PM

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Who's Mike Pinkerton?

#46 Computerworld's Cusumano Takes Another Look at Moz

by Anon

Thursday November 4th, 1999 2:10 AM

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Mike Pinkeron is the dude that used to use Netscape but now is sold entirely on IE.

Hi Chris!

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-Zulu