In this issue…

Open Web app ecosystem prototype
Mozilla has designed a prototype system for creating Open Web apps: applications built using HTML, CSS, and JavaScript that work on both regular computers and mobile devices. “Today, we are releasing technical documentation of the proposed system and a developer preview prototype that allows you to install, manage and launch Web apps in any modern desktop or mobile browser. This prototype provides a simple mechanism to support paid apps and authentication features to allow apps to log users in upon launch.” Supported browsers include Firefox 3.6 and later, Firefox for mobile, Internet Explorer 8, Chrome 6, Safari 5, Opera 10, and WebKit mobile. More details, including a video of the prototype demo, are available on the Mozilla blog.

Chromeless browser experiment
Mozilla Labs has launched an exciting new “chromeless browser” experiment that plays “with the idea of removing the current browser user interface and replacing it with a flexible platform which allows for the creation of new browser UI using standard Web technologies such as HTML, CSS and JavaScript. Firefox is put together in a way that seasoned developers are able to implement features with amazing efficiency, but at the same time, the browser interface in XUL represents a barrier for potential contributors. What if parts of the browser that are most interesting to contributors were implemented in standard Web technologies? What kinds of wild-eyed experimentation would we see if a new conception of browser UI could be prototyped in about the same time it takes to write a web page?”

Game On competition judges
The Game On contest was launched a few weeks ago, and the organizers have now announced the first batch of expert judges who will be helping with the competition. “Each of these individuals is an expert in their own domain from gaming to academia, fashion and more. We are grateful for their willingness to take time out to participate as the inaugural crew of Game On judges and help us evaluate game entries after the submission period closes on Jan 11, 2011.” The Labs team will be adding more judges to the panel throughout the competition, so if you have a passion for gaming and the Web, contact them to find out how to take part!

Build an add-on in five minutes
At the 2010 Mozilla Summit, Myk Melez gave a lightning talk during which he walked through the process of creating a complete (albeit simple) add-on in five minutes. This is made possible by the new Add-on Builder that “provides a simple, web-based development environment, takes care of cumbersome configuration and packaging tasks, and exposes intuitive, high-level APIs using web technologies for common tasks (like adding an item to a context menu and changing a web page), making it much easier to build add-ons for Firefox.” Myk has posted a video of this demonstration on his weblog.

Next steps for Mozilla Developer Tools
The Mozilla Developer Tools team is looking for feedback about their plans for the last part of this year. “We want Firefox to have the best developer tools of any web browser, and we want to push dev tools for the open web in new directions. You can help through ideas, code, tutorials, etc.” If you have feedback about the current draft of the team’s plans, send a note to the dev-apps-firefox list, or to Kevin Dangoor directly.

Hardware acceleration explained
Hardware-accelerated Web page rendering is a complex issue. Using a demo and slides by Paul Rouget, Tristan Nitot explains how these things work in Firefox 4 in a recent video posted on his weblog.

Net Neutrality: comments to the FCC
“The FCC recently asked for additional comments in its ongoing proceeding regarding Open Internet Principles. In particular, the FCC sought specific input on whether the openness principles should apply to both wireline and wireless networks. We submitted comments in response to the FCC’s inquiry supporting application of the Open Internet principles to wireless networks.” Harvey Anderson has posted more about this topic, including relevant portions of Mozilla’s submission.

Labs Night Gaming Edition: Thursday!
As part of the Game On 2010 contest, Mozilla Labs is hosting a very special “Open Web Games” edition of Labs Night this Thursday. “The evening will be about games being developed and played on the Open Web — expect cool tech demos, how-to talks and lots of interesting people! We will have a couple of speakers who will give demos and short tech talks on their projects followed by an audience Q&A. We’ll continue the tradition of opening up the podium to you if you want to give a short presentation (5 minute max) on your own project.” Check out the Labs blog for more information, and watch that space for more details about how to participate remotely!

Tbird community survey, part I
The first part of results and discussion around the Thunderbird team’s first contributor survey have been posted on Dan Mosedale’s blog. “The survey generated a lot of food for thought, and trying to distill it all in a single blog post wouldn’t work very well. Instead, I’m going to split this up into three posts.” This first post covers how much contributors actually enjoy taking part in the Thunderbird project, what roles they play (testers, localizers, developers, and supporters), and how long they have been contributing. Dan’s second post about the survey will take a closer look at the specific rewards and frustrations around contributing, but until then you can read all of part I at Dan’s blog.

Software releases
* Firefox 3.6.11 and 3.5.14
* Thunderbird 3.1.5 and 3.0.9
* Contacts 0.4
* SeaMonkey 2.0.9

Upcoming events
* Oct 28, Mozilla Labs Gaming Special
* Oct 28-29, Toronto, FSOSS
* Nov 3-5, Barcelona, Drumbeat Festival 2010
* Nov 5-7, Gothenburg, FSCONS
* April 9-10, Bulgaria Web Summit 2011

Developer calendar
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 about:mozilla
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, announcements, events, or software releases you would like to have included in our next issue, please send them to: about-mozilla[at]mozilla.com.