In this issue…
- Weave Web UI concepts due tomorrow
- Extend Firefox contest ends Oct 2nd
- Mobile emblem design challenge extended
- 10,000,000 Firefox users upgrade Flash
- New about:support page in Fx 3.6
- WebGL in Firefox nightly builds
- Theora 1.1: what you should know
- Firefox 3.7 and 4.0 design directions
- Snowl 0.3 released
- Describing the “Open Web”
- Drumbeat: questions and scenarios
- Mozilla Catalyst: grantmaking framework
- Interview with SeaMonkey project lead
- Upcoming events
- Developer calendar
- About about:mozilla
Weave Web UI concepts due tomorrow
The Weave Web UI Design Challenge is looking for your ideas around the question: “How can we provide intuitive and useful visual representations of your browser data (such as bookmarks, history, tabs, stored credentials, etc.) on a web page?” Read more about this design challenge at its landing page, and submit your concept on the ChallengePost page.
Extend Firefox contest ends Oct 2nd
The October 2nd deadline for the Extend Firefox 3.5 contest is coming up fast. If you have a great idea for a Firefox add-on but haven’t got around to creating it, now is the perfect time. The AMO team has posted links to useful resources that will help you get started, including the Mozilla Developer Center, add-on development documentation, and add-on development tutorials. Check out the Mozilla Add-ons Blog for these links and more.
Mobile emblem design challenge extended
John Slater has posted that the Firefox Goes Mobile design challenge deadlines have been extended by a couple of weeks. “Submissions are now due on Friday, October 16 and voting wraps up on Friday, October 23. As I noted in my earlier post, this is a great way to get involved with one of the biggest things going on in the world of Mozilla right now. We need an official emblem to represent mobile in a variety of places, and are looking to our community to help us out. If you’re interested, head over to the Creative Collective and upload your design.”
10,000,000 Firefox users upgrade Flash
With the releases of Firefox 3.5.3 and Firefox 3.0.14, Mozilla started warning users if their version of the popular Adobe Flash Player plugin was out of date. In the first week, 10,000,000 people clicked on the “Flash update” link on the warning page. The Metrics team has posted some initial analysis of the data. “Beyond the total impact of 10,000,000 clicks, the most impressive pattern that stands out is the click through rate. While the Firefox whatsnew page generally sees a click through rate below 5%, the flash update link alone has generated a click through rate north of 30%. Phenomenal!”
New about:support page in Fx 3.6
Percy Cabello of Mozilla Links has written about the new “about:support” feature in Firefox 3.6 Beta 1 nightlies. This new page lists important information about your Firefox installation making it easier for support people to help you with Firefox problems. “Enter ‘about:support’ in the location bar, hit Enter, and you will get a simple web page that includes details like your current profile location, exact Firefox version, links to plugins and build configuration details, a list of all your current extensions, and all modified preferences which could signal some incompatibility or forgotten customization.” Curtis Bartley has posted further information about this new feature, its status, and next steps.
WebGL in Firefox nightly builds
“WebGL is the evolution of work that Mozilla started a few years ago with experiments called Canvas 3D — essentially a way of accessing OpenGL from within the browser, through the HTML5 canvas tag. Earlier this year, we started a standardization effort within the Khronos Group which oversees OpenGL, and have made very rapid progress.” For more information about this new feature and the project behind it, see Vladimir Vukicevic’s blog post. There are also various demos available, but you will need to be running the Firefox nightly builds — changing the “webgl.enabled_for_all_sites” about:config value to “true” — in order to see them.
Theora 1.1: what you should know
Xiph has released Theora 1.1 less than a year after the release of Theora 1.0. This is a software-only release that does not include any changes to the Theora format, and is largely an improvement to the encoder. Chris Blizzard has written up an extensive post on Mozilla Hacks that provides a high-level overview of the changes in the software and what they mean to web developers and other people who are thinking about deploying Theora to support HTML5 video. Theora is an important technology to web developers because it’s the only competitive codec that currently complies with the W3C patent policy.
Firefox 3.7 and 4.0 design directions
Stephen Horlander and Alexander Limi have been working on new designs for Firefox 3.7 and 4.0. A wiki page has been started that describes what’s being planned, the result of months of hard work, idea generation, and discussions within Mozilla. If you’re interested in the future design plans for Firefox, you should read through the page and also check out Alexander’s blog post that includes an interesting video of the (occasionally messy) design process at work.
Snowl 0.3 released
Mozilla Labs has released Snowl 0.3, the third major release of the messaging-in-the-browser experiment. “This release features closer integration with Firefox’s existing feed functionality and many improvements to the list view to make it easier to subscribe to and follow feeds.” For more details, see the release announcment at the Mozilla Lab’s weblog.
Describing the “Open Web”
Jono DiCarlo has sparked an interesting conversation over on his blog, asking: What is “The Open Web” and why should you care? “Here at Mozilla we talk about ‘The Open Web’ a lot. We talk about it all the time. It’s one of our causes. The word ‘open’ appears seven times in our (very short) Manifesto. We have a proposal for a project called Drumbeat which aims to get people acting as ‘stewards of the open web’. But what does ‘open web’ actually mean?” As Jono points out, there is no single answer to this question, but many answers. Atul Varma has written two blog posts on the topic, Jono has written down some of this thoughts, and Mitchell Baker has also written about this on her weblog.
Drumbeat: questions and scenarios
Mark Surman and the Mozilla Foundation crew have been fleshing out ideas around a new project called “Drumbeat“. The fifth of these posts has been published that “lists the five biggest questions that need to be answered about Drumbeat right now and proposes the use of scenarios to answer these questions.” The most common questions about Drumbeat fall into a handful of general categories: Framing, Audience, Campaigns, Geography, and Partnership. Read more at Mark’s weblog and get involved with the discussion.
Mozilla Catalyst: grantmaking framework
Frank Hecker has been working on a “one Mozilla” approach to bestowing grants and helping Mozilla’s grantmaking become “more strategic and less ad hoc” that has resulted in a proposed framework he’s calling “Mozilla Catalyst”. “The goal is for Mozilla to be a catalyst in spurring innovations and addressing problems in areas relevant to the Mozilla mission that are important for the future of the open web but have been relatively neglected by us or others who share our vision and values.” Frank’s post goes into a lot more detail about the framework and thinking behind it, and concludes with some questions and a request for your thoughts and feedback.
Interview with SeaMonkey project lead
Mozilla Links has posted a recent interview with Robert Kaiser, the SeaMonkey project coordinator. “Ricardo Palomares from Mozilla Hispano, had an interview with Robert Kaiser on what’s going on with SeaMonkey, the motivations, and other activities including promotion and t-shirts.”
The Mozilla community is organizing an increasing number of events and meetups all the time, and we include a list of these here every week. If you have events you would like listed, send them along to: about-mozilla*at*mozilla.com.
* Tomorrow – Online – Weave Web UI design deadline
* Oct 2 – Online – Extend Firefox contest deadline
* Oct 3-4 – Prague – Mozilla Camp Europe
* Oct 8 – San Francisco – Labs Night
* Oct 15 – Online – Jetpack contest deadline
* Oct 16 – Online – Firefox Goes Mobile design deadline
* Oct 29-30 – Toronto – Free Software and Open Source Symposium
* Nov 7-8 – Sofia, Bulgaria – DevGarage
For an up-to-date list of the coming week’s Mozilla project meetings and events, please see the Mozilla Community Calendar wiki page. Notes from previous meetings are linked to through the Calendar as well.
about:mozilla is by, for and about the Mozilla community, focusing on major news items related to all aspects of the Mozilla Project. The newsletter is written by Deb Richardson and is published every Tuesday morning. If you have any news or announcements you would like to have included in our next issue, please send them to: about-mozilla[at]mozilla.com.
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29 Sep 2009 deb comments off