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posted by cmn32480 on Wednesday April 13 2016, @07:56AM   Printer-friendly
from the left-hand-doesn't-know-what-the-right-hand-is-doing dept.

Mozilla has sent mixed signals about the future of the Firefox Web browser:

The head of Mozilla's Firefox browser is looking to the future. And, for the moment at least, it seems to lie in rival Chrome. Senior VP Mark Mayo caused a storm by revealing that the Firefox team is working on a next-generation browser that will run on the same technology as Google's Chrome browser.

"Let's jump right in and say yes, the rumors are true, we're working on browser prototypes that look and feel almost nothing like the current Firefox," Mayo wrote in a blog post. "The premise for these experiments couldn't be simpler: what we need a browser to do for us – both on PCs and mobile devices – has changed a lot since Firefox 1.0, and we're long overdue for some fresh approaches."

The biggest surprise, however, was that the project, named Tofino, will not use Firefox's core technology – Gecko – but will instead plumb for Electron, which is built on the technology behind Google's rival Chrome browser, called Chromium.

However, Mayo updated his post to say that "I should have been clearer that Project Tofino is wholly focused on UX explorations and not the technology platform. We are working with the Platform team on technology platform futures too, and we're excited about the Gecko and Servo-based futures being discussed!" Mozilla's CTO also reaffirmed the company's commitment to the Gecko rendering engine:

Just two days after Mayo broke ranks, Mozilla's CTO jumped up and announced another new project – this one called Positron (geddit?) – which will take the Electron API and "wrap it around Gecko." Or, in other words, make it possible to take Mayo's new, better browser and pull it off Chromium and back into the safe hands of Gecko. And so the status quo seeks to reassert itself.

Also at CNET.


Original Submission

Related Stories

Mozilla Asks Pale Moon to "Police" Their Forum 85 comments

Pale Moon, the browser forked from Firefox that is popular with some Soylentils, was recently contacted by Mozilla, according to one of the developers:

I was contacted by Mozilla with the request to "police" our forum, since we (Pale Moon devs) are in direct control of the things discussed and posted here.

I'd like to clarify our position on this kind of thing to keep things from becoming unpleasant in both our relationship with you, the community, and our relationship with Mozilla:

Click here to read the rest of Moonchild's response, and some comments from the community as well.

[Continues...]

Mozilla Was "Outfoxed" by Google 53 comments

Mozilla "Got Outfoxed" by Google – Former VP Accuses Google for Sabotaging Firefox

Former Mozilla VP, Johnathan Nightingale, has called out on Google for what could only be termed as anti-competitive practices. In a Twitter thread on a somewhat unrelated subject, Nightingale said that during his 8 years at Mozilla, Google was the company's biggest partner. "Our revenue share deal on search drove 90% of Mozilla's income," he tweeted.

However, that doesn't mean Google wasn't involved in some underhand practices. "When I started at Mozilla in 2007 there was no Google Chrome and most folks we spoke with inside were Firefox fans," Nightingale wrote. "When chrome launched things got complicated, but not in the way you might expect. They had a competing product now, but they didn't cut ties, break our search deal – nothing like that. In fact, the story we kept hearing was, 'We're on the same side. We want the same things.'"

"I think our friends inside google genuinely believed that. At the individual level, their engineers cared about most of the same things we did. Their product and design folks made many decisions very similarly and we learned from watching each other. But Google as a whole is very different than individual googlers," Nightingale added.

Google Chrome ads started appearing next to Firefox search terms. gmail & gdocs started to experience selective performance issues and bugs on Firefox. Demo sites would falsely block Firefox as "incompatible."

All of this is stuff you're allowed to do to compete, of course. But we were still a search partner, so we'd say "hey what gives?"

And every time, they'd say, "oops. That was accidental. We'll fix it in the next push in 2 weeks."

Usage share of web browsers.

Previously: After 10 Years with Google, Firefox Switches to Yahoo
Netmarketshare Claims Mozilla Firefox Usage Drops Below Ten Percent
Mozilla CEO Warns Microsoft's Switch to Chromium Will Give More Control of the Web to Google
Is Google Using an "Embrace, Extend..." Strategy?
Google Denies Altering YouTube Code to Break Microsoft Edge
Microsoft Employee Sparks Outrage by Suggesting Firefox Switch Browser Engine to Chromium

Related: Firefox 29 is a Flop; UI Design Trends Only Getting Worse
Mozilla Teases Chromium-Based Firefox, Then Pulls Back
Can the New Firefox Quantum Regain its Web Browser Market Share?
Firefox 64 Will Remove Support for RSS and Atom Feeds
Microsoft Reportedly Building a Chromium-Based Web Browser to Replace Edge, and "Windows Lite" OS


Original Submission

Firefox Browser Use Drops as Mozilla's Worst Microsoft Edge Fears Come True 133 comments

Firefox Browser Use Drops As Mozilla's Worst Microsoft Edge Fears Come True

Back in April, we reported that the Edge browser is quickly gaining market share now that Microsoft has transitioned from the EdgeHTML engine to the more widely used Chromium engine (which also underpins Google's Chrome browser). At the time, Edge slipped into the second-place slot for desktop web browsers, with a 7.59 percent share of the market. This dropped Mozilla's Firefox – which has long been the second-place browser behind Chrome – into third place.

Now, at the start of August, we're getting some fresh numbers in for the desktop browser market, and things aren't looking good for Mozilla. Microsoft increased its share of the browser market from 8.07 percent in June to 8.46 percent in July. Likewise, Firefox fell from 7.58 percent to 7.27 percent according to NetMarketShare.

[...] As for Mozilla, the company wasn't too happy when Microsoft first announced that it was going to use Chromium for Edge way back in December 2018. Mozilla's Chris Beard at the time accused Microsoft of "giving up" by abandoning EdgeHTML in favor of Chromium. "Microsoft's decision gives Google more ability to single-handedly decide what possibilities are available to each one of us," said Beard at the time. "We compete with Google because the health of the internet and online life depend on competition and choice."

[...] Microsoft developer Kenneth Auchenberg fought back the following January, writing, "Thought: It's time for Mozilla to get down from their philosophical ivory tower. The web is dominated by Chromium, if they really *cared* about the web they would be contributing instead of building a parallel universe that's used by less than 5 percent."

Is the browser monoculture inevitable or will Firefox hang in there?

Previously:


Original Submission

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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by maxwell demon on Wednesday April 13 2016, @07:59AM

    by maxwell demon (1608) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday April 13 2016, @07:59AM (#331043) Journal

    If I wanted to use Chrome, I'd know where to get it.

    However if I want to use Firefox, I'm no longer sure where to get it, as Mozilla currently is working hard on making Firefox into a browser that's Firefox only in name.

    --
    The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
    • (Score: 4, Funny) by MadTinfoilHatter on Wednesday April 13 2016, @08:29AM

      by MadTinfoilHatter (4635) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @08:29AM (#331056)

      if I want to use Firefox, I'm no longer sure where to get it

      Here you go. [mozilla.org] After this they sadly slowly went crazy...

      • (Score: 5, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:01AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:01AM (#331064)

        I think he means http://www.palemoon.org/ [palemoon.org]

        • (Score: 3, Insightful) by cubancigar11 on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:35AM

          by cubancigar11 (330) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:35AM (#331074) Homepage Journal

          Palemoon, FTW!

        • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @01:16PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @01:16PM (#331128)

          And finally a repository for LinuxMint/Ubuntu to use:
          deb http://download.opensuse.org/repositories/home:/stevenpusser/xUbuntu_14.04/ [opensuse.org]

          (at https://software.opensuse.org/download.html?project=home%3Astevenpusser&package=palemoon [opensuse.org]
          linked from https://www.palemoon.org/contributed-builds.shtml [palemoon.org] "Pale Moon repositories for Debian and Ubuntu by Steve Pusser")

          Any idea why they didn't just put it at a normal PPA?

          • (Score: 1) by WillR on Wednesday April 13 2016, @02:10PM

            by WillR (2012) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @02:10PM (#331156)
            "...for Debian and Ubuntu..."
            Debian doesn't speak PPA
          • (Score: 2) by Magic Oddball on Thursday April 14 2016, @04:57AM

            by Magic Oddball (3847) on Thursday April 14 2016, @04:57AM (#331479) Journal

            Note that the second link you're pointing to is actually an OpenSUSE user repository, so users of that distro are covered as well.

            For the rest of the Linux kingdom, according to linux.palemoon.org [palemoon.org]:

            Installation, uninstallation and upgrades are normally managed with the Pale Moon for Linux installer [palemoon.org]. However, you can also download Pale Moon for Linux as a bzipped tarball [palemoon.org] that can be extracted and run from anywhere. There is also a special build [palemoon.org] available that is specifically optimized to run on Intel Atom processors.

            Additionally, Pale Moon is included in and can be installed directly from the default repositories of the following distros:
                    Manjaro (both the standard build and Atom builds)
                    PCLinuxOS
                    Puppy Linux "Tahrpup"
                    MEPIS/MX-15
                    Arch User Repository (AUR) (both standard and Atom builds)
                    Gentoo Overlays
                    Slackbuilds

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @10:56PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @10:56PM (#331333)

          Palemoon is not a suitable browser for anyone, because it is proprietary software.

          From their license[1]:

          No rights are given to copy, modify or create derivative works of this software.

          That means that Debian/Ubuntu couldn't even put Palemoon in their proprietary sections, because the license prohibits copying.

          [1] http://www.palemoon.org/freeware-license.shtml [palemoon.org]

          • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 14 2016, @01:20AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 14 2016, @01:20AM (#331396)

            as you can see there, that doesn't apply to the web browser (which is the part we are interested in...),
            "note that this license does not apply to the Pale Moon browser, but to other specific (helper) applications released by Moonchild Productions. For licensing of the browser, please see the MPL (for the source) and redistribution license (for binary (re)distribution)"
            MPL is the same open source that firefox use: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mozilla_Public_License [wikipedia.org]

            Looks like the special freeware license thing is for an firefox extension "Pale Moon Commander", a "Pale Moon profile migration tool" and a "Flash Protected Mode tool" just small tools for changing settings... nothing you or I would use :-)

    • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:22AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:22AM (#331068)

      Seamonkey + noscript is another option.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @12:35PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @12:35PM (#331110)

        But under the hood it has most or all of the problems of firefox now. Like all the crap you have to disable to even begin having a secure browsing experience (JS viewer, disabling telemetry, etc.)

        While it still beats chrome, it is also much slower on security updates since they only tend to put out major reivions of seamonkey now (no esrs, meaning you get all the broken new crap every release too!)

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by AndyTheAbsurd on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:26AM

    by AndyTheAbsurd (3958) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:26AM (#331070) Journal

    Teases? More like threatens.

    I'm not aware of any Firefox users that actually want Firefox to be more like Google Chrome. I guess Mozilla feels there are enough of them to keep Firefox alive, though.

    --
    Please note my username before responding. You may have been trolled.
    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @12:51PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @12:51PM (#331116)

      The only people who want Firefox to be Chrome are the Firefox developers and whoever else is running the self-destructing show at Mozilla.

      Simple fact of the matter is that Chrome beats the pants out of Firefox on everything except for the things that they are doing their best to destroy about Firefox, namely customization and plug-ins. And now, if you want a customizable browser, Vivaldi has a fantastic head start and is already compatible with Chrome plug-ins. And for those who distrust Google sufficiently, there are options involving Chromium that are worth exploring. IIRC there are already a few other niche browsers that are based around the Chrome engine, as well, while Firefox busily kills Gecko, or at least leaves it to die of neglect, while they do fantastic things such as spend the organization's money on pet political projects and strip out features.

      Essentially Firefox is trying to pull itself from its market share and cram itself into a niche that's already full and growing. I don't know if they expect to pull a bunch of users back to their side or what, but they're providing no incentives to actually stay with them, providing no incentives to turn to them, and providing every incentive to leave and never look back. If they reverse course, they'll already have heavily burned anyone who cared.

      It's very sad to see the end of the Netscape browser from such a situation, but it looks inevitable since the devs won't pull their heads out of the sand. I can't help but wonder just what's going on over there in the organization - I half-expect there to be a ton of super-frustrated developers who hate this but don't want to lose their jobs over it, and the decisions are only made by a few people who are out of touch and have deliberately stayed that way.

      • (Score: 4, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @03:15PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @03:15PM (#331175)

        Simple fact of the matter is that Chrome beats the pants out of Firefox on everything except for the things that they are doing their best to destroy about Firefox, namely customization and plug-ins.

        I agree, except that I'm loving ASM.js compilation to machine code and caching. The work Mozilla has done on the web audio system, file system API, and local cache access are swank. Native support for gamepads and joysticks, WebGL. I'm experimenting with some next gen distributed game engine code where "persistent online world" doesn't need a centralized server, and thus can't be shut down whenever Blizzard wants (not using their IP, but still, fucking hell Blizzard, people just want to play and make games that don't have needless death sentences).

        Anyway, I don't really like "WebAssembly" as it's a bytecode format that is irrelevant. It speeds the initial compile time over ASM.js, but only by a half a second, and Every successive page load the machine code is cached and loads in milliseconds, so WebAssembly is a solution in search of a problem, IMO. Well, except that it lets you have native 32bit floats, while ASM.js really only has 64bit float operations (with 32bit float stores to memory), and you can have 64bit ints with WebAssembly -- but I don't use those because I'd rather SIMD more 16bit and 32bit values instead.

        Anyhow, it's pretty cool that Chrome can almost (but not really) match the speed of FF's ASM.js compiled code with just the standard Chrome JS JIT operations. ASM.js is a subset of JS that opts out of JS dynamism and garbage collection, basically leaving you only C-like features, but if the browser doesn't know what to do with it the ASM.js code just gets run as regular JS code. WebAssembly, however is not backwards compatible at all, since it's a new binary format for code. Google and MS are on the WebAssembly band wagon though (It's less of a bytecode and more of an archived abstract syntax tree stored recursively left branch first). So, FF pioneered the cross platform way forward and away from Javascript. If I had to pick one thing as the best thing any browser has done so far, that would be it.

        Personally, I wish they'd just fire the FF UX team. Get those hotheads out of there. The shit that requires engineering, those people are pretty cool. The chrome/chromium people are fucking retarded, however. I don't know how the fuck you do this, but when they implemented ArrayBuffers (native int and float arrays) the dumb-asses forgot to implement one of the methods required: Int32Array.set() which I desperately needed to efficiently copy and memset and to pass around large messages, audio data, vertex index lists, buffers, etc. I just scratched my head, because the spec and docs said the function was there, but the method was undefined. That means somebody plain fucking forgot to even stub out all the methods. No, that means they're not doing any sort of unit testing, QA, or peer review, like, at all! The kicker is the ArrayBuffers feature had been in FF and Chrome for quite some time, but Chromium still stat there with an issue in the bug tracker saying, "oops, forgot to implement .set()" It's a fucking single line memcpy and some bounds checks, holy shit.

        In truth, I know that deep down all browsers are all shit held together with bubble gum and twine. FF is a bit less so IMO. We really should start over from scratch and completely re-engineer the web to be stateful and secure (fuck you Tim Burners Lee and the stateless horse you rode in on, dumbass: "Herp! Let's build the biggest most powerful web out of the most interactive and stateful machines on the planet, but not give them any state! DERP!" "how will people log in you say? THEY WON'T!" Grrr! It's all that fucking guy's fault!). Seriously, all the revered "web gods" are idiotic emperors wearing no clothes. Chrome is not faster than FF, it just cuts corners -- like not checking TLS certificate revocation lists, so if your site gets compromised and you get a new cert, and void the old one, Chrome[ium] still accepts the bad cert that MITMs are now known to be using... what the actual fuck Google! Every little bit of initial page load time they shave off costs you something. I prefer to wait a few milliseconds than to have no security.

        • (Score: 2) by Magic Oddball on Thursday April 14 2016, @06:24AM

          by Magic Oddball (3847) on Thursday April 14 2016, @06:24AM (#331494) Journal

          We really should start over from scratch and completely re-engineer the web to be stateful and secure (fuck you Tim Burners Lee and the stateless horse you rode in on, dumbass: "Herp! Let's build the biggest most powerful web out of the most interactive and stateful machines on the planet, but not give them any state! DERP!" "how will people log in you say? THEY WON'T!" Grrr! It's all that fucking guy's fault!).

          The World Wide Web was never intended to be used for every fucking kind of random interaction on the Internet. Tim Berners-Lee & co. designed HTML specifically for people that needed a way to share written information without needing to send a copy to each individual and update it whenever changes were made. It was intended as one of the many existing & future communication tools on the Internet — alongside Usenet for discussion groups, email for more personal or 'gated' interaction, FTP for transferring files, etc. — not as a replacement or framework for every random fucking thing people might come up with after the 90s.

          Your attitude is like bolting a jet engine and wings into a bicycle, then upon waking up in the hospital after crashing it horribly, going bugfuck ranting about how the bike company supposedly did a shitty job designing the vehicle because even though it works great as a bike, it doesn't make a great airplane.

          Personally, I'm fed up with Web browsers bloating more every year as they try to cram ever-more abilities under the hood (thanks to the "flying bike" crowd) that I'll never fucking use. If the Web Browsers are a pain in the ass to work with when it comes to game creation, it's a sign that game creators need to collectively branch into a separate shared protocol and standard for GameWeb browsers. As an awesome side-effect of that, maybe the UX twats around the world would then stop compulsively mangling functional software by "reinventing" it in minimalist forms and dedicate themselves to creating the new GameWeb interfaces! (Not likely, but we can all dream, right?)

      • (Score: 2) by rleigh on Wednesday April 13 2016, @08:20PM

        by rleigh (4887) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @08:20PM (#331285) Homepage

        Yep, I just installed Vivaldi as a compromise between not using Firefox and not using Chrome, even if it is Chrome under the hood. That's on Windows; I recently also switched to Chromium on Linux.

        I've been using mozilla since Netscape 2 on Solaris, through all the initial open source mozilla milestones on Debian, and then as Firefox and Iceweasel on all platforms. But I've reached the limit of how many regressive UI changes I'm willing to tolerate. If you're going to force the UI to be as Chrome-like as possible, then why would I continue to use it rather than using actual Chrome? I was using firefox because I actually preferred it, both for its stance on freedom and its UI. Now I only have two bad choices, and I might as well choose the one which doesn't continually lock up due to not having per-tab processes/threads, and which doesn't have long-standing serious memory leaks. Seriously, it's been leaking memory since the mozilla milestones and you *never* fixed it. Have you heard of valgrind? C++ smartpointers? Such long-standing serious defects are inexcusable.

        The best browsers I've used to date were:

        Galeon: Used the Gecko engine, and back in the day integrated very well into a GNOME 1.x/early 2.x desktop, and was faster and more stable than mozilla itself.
        Konqueror: Well integrated into the KDE desktop via kparts; though nowadays it's not so usable in the KDE 3 era it was excellent

        The thing is, mozilla/firefox has never really integrated well into any environment or platform. It might be skinned to appear like it does, but it's never been as usable or as well integrated as these. When it comes to actually getting work done with these, that integration does provide tangible benefits. Rather than being a monolithic beast, konqueror used the kde wallet system for passwords, the spell checking system, fonts, ui, and more. Firefox and Thunderbird are their own standalone worlds, and have always been this way.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 14 2016, @01:01AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 14 2016, @01:01AM (#331385)

      I switched my mom's Chrome for Firefox, only keeping the Chrome desktop icon. She hasn't noticed the difference. Nice work!

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by wonkey_monkey on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:32AM

    by wonkey_monkey (279) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:32AM (#331073) Homepage

    we're long overdue for some fresh approaches.

    Really? The way some people talk it's nothing but new approaches every other version (which everybody hates).

    --
    systemd is Roko's Basilisk
    • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:54AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:54AM (#331076)

      con*sist*en*cy |kənˈsistənsē|(also consistence |-təns|)
      noun ( pl. consistencies )
      definition: conformity in the application of something, typically that which is necessary for the sake of logic, accuracy, or fairness.
      antonym: See Firefox.

      • (Score: 4, Insightful) by rleigh on Wednesday April 13 2016, @07:55PM

        by rleigh (4887) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @07:55PM (#331273) Homepage

        Strangely enough, for those old enough to have read and used the older user interface guidelines, be it IBM CUA, Sun OpenLook, CDE, GNOME 2 HIG, Apple's old ones, etc. the major point rammed home is simply: be consistent. Consistency makes things usable by making newly encountered things sufficiently similar to things the user already knows about, making them intuitive, discoverable and obvious. It doesn't matter if it's common keybindings, common menu structures or visual appearance. They all become familiar and second nature. And the people who wrote these things based them upon actual thought, study and empirical testing. Hell, even the simplest Xt or Motif application had more consistency than the crap we have to deal with today.

        The modern "UX" experts make me very angry. It's all style over substance, and it's entirely regressive. We had better qualified and skilled people doing this stuff over 30 years ago, who literally wrote the books on this, but to your average hipster that's old and outdated. But do any hipster UX "experts" actually seriously use their bastard creations, or just inflict them upon others? Forget "experience", whatever happened to efficiency and usability for people who actually use this stuff day in, day out. There's a reason I'm using Emacs and not gedit or Visual Studio. Common menu structure? You'll take your hamburger and like it! Keybindings? What are they now? Visual consistency, it'll be flat and bland with no way to differentiate between a label and a button. Gah.

        • (Score: 2) by bitstream on Thursday April 14 2016, @01:34AM

          by bitstream (6144) on Thursday April 14 2016, @01:34AM (#331405) Journal

          They can't make a living by using what already exist .. ;)

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @03:52PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @03:52PM (#331187)

      Yeah what I want is firefox minus any stupid new UI bullshit AND minus any "janking"[1] or lagginess.

      Look browser UI was fine or even better 10 years ago. Please sack your entire UI team since they've proven themselves to have zero good ideas. They seem to be busy making the UI worse and doing circle jerks.

      If you want to improve the UI, how about better and faster ways to switch amongst many tabs and windows.

      [1] https://soylentnews.org/article.pl?sid=15/06/19/1334247 [soylentnews.org]

      "The goal is to reduce 'jank' -- those times when the browser seems to briefly freeze when loading a big page, typing in a form, or scrolling.

  • (Score: 3, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:58AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:58AM (#331078)

    Mozilla Teases Chromium-Based Firefox, Then Pulls Back

    So, "just the tip"? We all know how that ends.

    --
    Posted from my Pale Moon.

    • (Score: 2) by darkfeline on Thursday April 14 2016, @02:03AM

      by darkfeline (1030) on Thursday April 14 2016, @02:03AM (#331415) Homepage

      >We all know how that ends.

      A cigar cutter?

      --
      Join the SDF Public Access UNIX System today!
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by PizzaRollPlinkett on Wednesday April 13 2016, @11:17AM

    by PizzaRollPlinkett (4512) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @11:17AM (#331087)

    Mozilla should stop being "wholly focused on UX explorations" and start focusing on why loyal users are abandoning their browser as fast as they can.

    --
    (E-mail me if you want a pizza roll!)
    • (Score: 4, Interesting) by VLM on Wednesday April 13 2016, @03:02PM

      by VLM (445) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @03:02PM (#331171)

      Its "desktop environment" disease. They suffer from the same problem.

      How do you handle the problem of a non-innovative semi-technical product with way too many innovators? Its similar ecologically to the old fox n hare thing where you have too many foxes. Just too many intensely group thinking UX people for the ecology to survive their presence. In small doses they're OK although occasionally annoying to have to work around, but when you get too many the ecology crashes and burns, just like too many foxes.

      Groupthink is a major secondary problem. An ecology that can survive a diverse, open minded, and creative group of 10000 UX designers will sink under the weight of a mere 100 designers with a severe groupthink infection. As for treatment of a severe groupthink infection, the old quote "better nuke it from orbit just to be sure" applies. There really is no hope for Mozilla. Even downsizing won't save them as the fad/style oriented groupthinky people tend to be very extroverted and have more social connections, so downsizing in an attempt to reduce groupthink paradoxically almost always results in increased concentration of groupthink.

      The only way I know of to save a groupthink infected industry is to convince the parasite to move on. A major PR campaign to "move fast and break things" in the automotive sector would result in unusable cars where you steer with your tongue and they're all painted shades of purple, but at least the parasite might abandon web development or even desktop environments. Yeah... as an emacs user I think the UX people should be all over VIM, yeah thats the ticket...

      • (Score: 2) by coolgopher on Thursday April 14 2016, @01:46AM

        by coolgopher (1157) Subscriber Badge on Thursday April 14 2016, @01:46AM (#331407)

        as an emacs user I think the UX people should be all over VIM

        Wait, you're saying the UX people have been all over emacs so far? I guess that does explain a lot...

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by jdavidb on Wednesday April 13 2016, @12:25PM

    by jdavidb (5690) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @12:25PM (#331106) Homepage Journal

    Let's jump right in and say yes, the rumors are true, we're working on browser prototypes that look and feel almost nothing like the current Firefox

    How is that news? New versions of Firefox that look and feel almost nothing like the current version come out about three times a year.

    --
    ⓋⒶ☮✝🕊 Secession is the right of all sentient beings
  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @12:36PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @12:36PM (#331111)

    So, this is what you call a Market Test. You're allowed by the SEC to propose a new product, and then cancel it, to gauge market demand.

    The Mozilla devs all know about the "Chrome" vs "Chrome" dichotomy. You see, "Chrome" is what Firefox calls all the stuff surrounding the web page, the menus, buttons, etc. "UX". However, Google made a browser that's called Chrome.

    So, some Mozilla devs do some UX experimenting and grab a lean browser based on Google's Chrome to render with rather than go and make a stripped down FF explicitly to play with. Meanwhile other devs and pointy haired bosses decide to float the idea of ditching the FF codebase and just leaching off of Chrome(ium). They can say "The future of Firefox is Chrome" and have plausible deniability that "Oh, no silly, we meant the UX widgets, not letting our competitor do the render engine work for us." If they could ditch their codebase and just do UX, then they could cut costs a lot. This is just testing the waters to see how outraged the userbase would be. Plus it gets their name in the news.

    Now, what a lot of people don't realize is that, just like Debian, Mozilla has had a hostile takeover by SJWs. Thus, they've been making stupider and stupider decisions as serious devs have jumped ship or been witch hunted out for wrong-think, like their ex-CEO. FreeBSD finally got rid of that toxic idiot SJW "FreeBSDGirl". SJWs have even been targeting Linus Torvalds. [ibiblio.org] The aim is to put their censorious authoritarian thought police in places of power everywhere. That's their way. It's how 4chan and Reddit fell to SJW censorship. Funny thing is: It's classic soviet subversion tactic. [youtube.com]

    • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @01:14PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @01:14PM (#331127)

      Go back to patreon, ESR. There is nothing for you here... also, take your meds!

    • (Score: 2) by bitstream on Thursday April 14 2016, @01:52PM

      by bitstream (6144) on Thursday April 14 2016, @01:52PM (#331637) Journal

      Now, what a lot of people don't realize is that, just like Debian, Mozilla has had a hostile takeover by SJWs. Thus, they've been making stupider and stupider decisions as serious devs have jumped ship or been witch hunted out for wrong-think, like their ex-CEO. FreeBSD finally got rid of that toxic idiot SJW "FreeBSDGirl". SJWs have even been targeting Linus Torvalds. [ibiblio.org] The aim is to put their censorious authoritarian thought police in places of power everywhere. That's their way. It's how 4chan and Reddit fell to SJW censorship. Funny thing is: It's classic soviet subversion tactic. [youtube.com]

      Makes one wonder what opponent that are acting. If it's plain prospiracy, ie colluding actions that are only coordinated by being in similar thought patterns. Seems three candidates are good matches, TLA agency wishing to undermine a secure platform, Microsoft and feminist movement wishing to be the king of important FOSS projects.

      As a side note advice to males on technical conferences. Make sure you can prove that you never been alone with any female, and don't be it either. Have evidence to back it up to.

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @01:25PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 13 2016, @01:25PM (#331132)

    Have they really? I personally don't think so. We're browsing the same web as 12 years ago. Sure more JS with ads, spam and malware has been sprinkled on the poor old web but no rational person will allow any of that download or much less run. And then of course there are plenty of Software as service platforms out there offering a slower version of something you have running on your own machine that also spies on your data and could vanish overnight without you having any say in the matter... There also are a few new HTML elements but one has to expect some change in 12 years.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by maxwell demon on Wednesday April 13 2016, @01:55PM

      by maxwell demon (1608) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday April 13 2016, @01:55PM (#331146) Journal

      Have they really?

      Yes, but not in the way the Mozilla developers think. Back in the days of Firefox 1.0, I didn't need a whole set of extensions just to protect myself/my computer from all the bad stuff on the web.

      --
      The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
      • (Score: 2, Funny) by Kawumpa on Wednesday April 13 2016, @03:50PM

        by Kawumpa (1187) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @03:50PM (#331186)

        ...just to protect myself/my computer from all the bad stuff on the web.

        And therein lies the problem. You think of Javascript/AJAX-functionality that disables browser functionality, advertisements and user tracking as "bad stuff" while it's really not. It is technology that is designed to make web consumer experience much convenient and pleasurable. It allows to carefully guide and enhance the consumers' view of the world and themselves in ways TV broadcasting was never capable of. Look at how may people out there feel empowered by all the forums and comment sections. The masses are finally herd...heard and it's not a one way street... :-)

  • (Score: 3, Funny) by tangomargarine on Wednesday April 13 2016, @01:52PM

    by tangomargarine (667) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @01:52PM (#331145)

    The head of Mozilla's Firefox browser is looking to the future. And, for the moment at least, it seems to lie in rival Chrome.

    Understatement of the year...

    "Let's jump right in and say yes, the rumors are true, we're working on browser prototypes that look and feel almost nothing like the current Firefox,"

    So they're starting a separate project that actually feels like Firefox? Ha ha ha!...Ha ha......ha...........sigh.

    Mayo wrote in a blog post. "The premise for these experiments couldn't be simpler: what we need a browser to do for us – both on PCs and mobile devices – has changed a lot since Firefox 1.0, and we're long overdue for some fresh approaches."

    NO YOU FUCKING AREN'T

    --
    "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
  • (Score: 2) by Celestial on Wednesday April 13 2016, @02:04PM

    by Celestial (4891) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @02:04PM (#331152) Journal

    Mozilla Firefox in Chrome. It's called Vivaldi.

  • (Score: 2) by Joe Desertrat on Wednesday April 13 2016, @05:15PM

    by Joe Desertrat (2454) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @05:15PM (#331214)

    The premise for these experiments couldn't be simpler: what we need a browser to do for us – both on PCs and mobile devices – has changed a lot since Firefox 1.0, and we're long overdue for some fresh approaches.

    It already does what I need it to do for the most part. I was even happier with what it did and how it looked several versions back. They seem to be following the Yahoo business model in that they keep making things worse and then wonder why they are losing market share.

  • (Score: 2) by Refugee from beyond on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:16PM

    by Refugee from beyond (2699) on Wednesday April 13 2016, @09:16PM (#331303)

    So, Firefox will get that great (non-existant) Google Chrome's UI then? I'm not sure that made the statement any better.

    --
    Instantly better soylentnews: replace background on article and comment titles with #973131.