https://twitter.com/auchenberg/status/1088587621721231361 : "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%?"
The actual argument behind this is an interesting one. I think he's pushing an essentially utilitarian approach: this is where you can do the most good.
In fact aspects of this argument are quite important at Mozilla, but from a different perspective. Many at Mozilla are very aware that the impact of Firefox itself is a relatively small percentage of users. But Firefox is also what makes Mozilla relevant, and Mozilla can have a greater effect on Chromium acting as a peer rather than as a contributor. And if Gecko is not as widespread as Blink, we use our mission to assert ourselves as peers anyway.
@ianbicking being old enough to remember the IE internet world of the ActiveX lock-in and still today finding IE only legacy sites, I'm really happy Firefox exists. even at 5% of the market there is an ability to "do it better" and "do it right" as Chromium will eventually head down the lock-in world, knowing Firefox is an option, a brand name option is great.
We compete with Google because the health of the internet and online life depend on competition and choice. 1/2
@ianbicking I'm waiting to see what happens when Chromium does to Facebook what it has done to Amazon and Google did to Microsoft, starts witholding services. the lack of Google services as apps on Windows Phone 8 helped kill that platform in favour of Android, the lack of YouTube on the Echo show has been shown to slow down sales of that device, so with multi platform browser dominance, the potential to make every Facebook less easy to use is high.. very dangerous 2/2
@ianbicking I had these discussions with Kenneth many times, even before MSFT made the Edge decision. I think it's short-sighted, because what makes the web resilient is that it's not owned by any one company or organization.
He's right though that there's also a question of pragmatism and resourcing. How much money is Mozilla willing to kick in, to fight for that 5% market share and against all the compatibility problems that pile up when webdevs don't test in your browser? I guess we'll see.
@ianbicking Mozilla's inability or unwillingness to partner with others that could use Gecko needs to be fixed. Why didn't Edge go with Gecko for instance?
@fabricedesre it's a ways away from me in the org, so I don't have personal insight into it, but I get the strong impression that they want to change that. GeckoView is definitely happening. The partnership with Amazon has been going well. Other things are in the works, like the Qualcomm partnership to bring Firefox to ARM64. As for Microsoft, I don't know what their decision process was or if we made any attempt to influence them.
@ianbicking Is Amazon building the browser itself or shipping something built by Mozilla?
@fabricedesre They are shipping something called Firefox, built by Mozilla: https://github.com/mozilla-mobile/firefox-echo-show
The Android Components project is to make building a browser from Firefox bits easier, and I think the intention is for partners to be able to use that to build custom versions of Firefox: https://medium.com/firefox-mobile-engineering/creating-a-simple-browser-with-mozilla-android-components-b33349cde4d0
Embedding Gecko, ala WebView, is a different kind of partnership, and I don't know exactly what those plans are or what it looks like.
@ianbicking wait, you mean somebody at microsoft is advocating for a monoculture? well I never…
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