Labs Update – January 2009


January 2009

Concept Series

Design Challenge

This month we announced the first of a series of Design Challenges. We’re inviting design-focused students from around the world to develop new ideas & prototypes for the future of the Web. Learn more

Design Review

Alex Faaborg and Aza Raskin posted another edition of their Design Review podcast.

Concepts of the Month

  • Liyan Chang from MIT explores several interesting concepts for improving the Firefox UI in this short concept video.

  • Maureen Hanratty and Ian Tadashi Moore from UMich have created Arclight, a Flash animation that proposes a UI for a touch-screen kitchen table.

Honorable Mentions

Useful, interesting or cool sites that we’ve come across this month.

  • iPlotz – A useful tool for creating mockups and wireframes.
  • Twiddla – A web-based meeting space with team whiteboarding and the ability to mark up websites, graphics, and photos.
  • idealist – A site for creators and designers to post their ideas and gather community feedback.



Suneel Gupta provides an update on Personas.


Work continues on the plan to uplift a Prism-like feature into a future version of Firefox. You can follow the early specification work on the Mozilla Wiki.

The Prism experiment and platform itself will continue in its exploration independent of this effort. If you’re new to the concept of site-specific browsers, be sure to check out the Prism for Firefox add-on.


Myk Melez provides an update on Snowl.


Jono DiCarlo posted a series of blog posts exploring a new approach to verbs in Ubiquity, culminating in a proposal for new Overlord Verbs.

Blair McBride put together a high-level look at information storage in Ubiquity.

There is also now a Ubiquity command development tutorial.


Work progresses toward the 0.3 major update with full support for Fennec. Account registration has re-opened and you can now sign up for a Weave account at

Jono provides an update on what’s up with Weave and the changes coming in Ubiquity with the proposed introduction of Overlord Verbs.

5 responses

  1. vatar wrote on :

    Experiments section – Prism for Firefox very powerful!

  2. Pascal Finette wrote on :

    Ryan – thank you very much for pointing Pencil out. It’s a great tool and can be freely downloaded on the Mozilla Firefox Add-On site.


  3. Sorin wrote on :

    The page still shows registration as closed:Thank you for the overwhelming response to Weave! We are currently in closed alpha, and are accepting new registrations only on an invite basis.

    Was there a limited number of accounts, lalready depleted, or is there some issue with the page?

  4. Moody Loner wrote on :

    With reference to Liyan Changs video segment on split browsing, firefox already has this function available through the extension “Split Browser”, which I have to say is an incredibly useful feature, especially in widescreen – as Liyan mentions.

    To have this ability built in, as demonstrated, would be another step in making ff an OS without the real need for an actual OS (so to speak). I do believe that with all the innovations the ff community is coming up with, the greater need for the OS as we know it (Win, Linux or OSX) will become less and less as we grow the connectivity to the net more and more in every day life.

    Keep it up guys – the future’s bright. Thanks

  5. Ryan Scott Scheel wrote on :

    On the “iPlotz – A useful tool for creating mockups and wireframes.” thing, there is the program/extension (much like Chatzilla has a standalone) called Pencil.