Can Mozilla right the ship?

By Jon Gold, Network World |  Internet, Firefox, google chrome

Mozilla's inability to match the effectively unlimited resources that Google and Microsoft can pour into their products has made its presence felt. For example, the company recently announced that its upcoming Web app store would not, initially, support Linux.

In forum discussions, Mozilla representatives said that the omission of Linux compatibility was a product of Linux's relatively small user base, compared to Mac OS and Windows. Another comment, however, from product director Asa Dotzler, seems to imply that the company simply doesn't have the personnel to create that support.

"Assuming that Mozilla-paid Linux hackers are busy with higher priority items, then we need to find some volunteers to help," he wrote.

Despite its recent troubles, Firefox is still in widespread use, and the browser is but one of a number of projects under the organization's management. Its email client, Thunderbird, is popular in the open-source community and is the default option in Ubuntu, and the Camino Mac Web browser is generally well regarded, if not widely used.

"They still have a strong community and technology," says 451 Research's Lyman.

That said, Mozilla will still likely live and die with its flagship browser. As Chrome continues to gain users and Microsoft gears up for Windows 8, the open-source browser maker has no shortage of major challenges to tackle.

Email Jon Gold at and follow him on Twitter at @NWWJonGold.

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Originally published on Network World |  Click here to read the original story.
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