Personas for Firefox is a prototype extension that adds lightweight theming to the browser.
Today, we are launching a major expansion of the Personas experiment, which includes more dependable functionality, a cleaner look, an expanded gallery of artistic designs, and a much easier way to contribute.
Here’s a video that was put together by Rainer Cvillink that shows off some of the new designs with folks around Mozilla talking about what they like about Personas:
Since we began work on the Personas experiment, the project has evolved with the support and creativity of the Mozilla community. We have been able to accomplish the following key milestones:
1. smoother integration into the chrome, including styling for the Find toolbar;
2. an expanded gallery of over 500 persona designs, including art from independent and established artists;
3. ability to create a “custom” persona locally either to keep private, or to test before submitting to the gallery;
4. an easy-to-use interface for contributing designs, with more control over text and accent colors for your art;
5. localization for the extension, which now supports Bulgarian (bg-BG), Czech (cs-CZ), Danish (da-DK), German (de-DE), English (en-US), Spanish (es-CL), French (fr-FR), Hebrew (he-IL), Italian (it-IT), Japanese (ja-JP), Korean (ko-KR), and Portugese (pt-BR).
The Personas project began in late 2007 as an experiment within Mozilla Labs to explore new ways to quickly and easily personalize the online experience. With the support and creativity of the Mozilla community, the project continues to evolve and is focused on three key concepts:
1. It Shouldn’t be Hard to Make Your Browser a Little More Fun and Personal
You can download the Personas add-on in under a minute with just a few clicks of your mouse. Select a design from the online gallery that reflects your mood or interests, and when you are ready for a change, rotate it out for another style. Your choice will appear instantly with no disruption to your web browsing.
2. You Should be able to Personalize Your Entire Web Experience with Lots of Great Designs
You can personalize your homepage, blog or instant messenger, but you leave your design behind when you visit another webpage or minimize your chat. The only way to personalize your entire online experience is through your browser. With Personas, your design stays with you at each and every point of your time online. And to give you lots of great content to choose from, we have opened the Personas gallery to independent designers from around the world, and also teamed up with popular brands, including Greenpeace, Cynthia Rowley, All American Rejects, and LIVESTRONG. Here are just some of the designs for you to choose from:
3. The Artist in You Should Be Able to Treat the Browser as Your Canvas
The Personas project aims to support and promote artists and their work. We do this by making it easy for you to style the browser with your own designs and share your work with millions of people around the world. Until now, designers had to write code to customize a browser. With Personas, you can use a simple interface to upload formatted images. If you don’t have experience with formatting images, we make it easy for you to learn how (and, we’re working on tools to make it even easier!) Once you’re done creating your design, you can upload it to the design gallery for people to discover and enjoy during their next online stroll through the gallery.
While we suggest that everyone license their designs under a Creative Commons license, we’re also now exploring a model where designers can keep their designs proprietary. The idea is that we’ll freely host content that’s contributed as open source while providing an option for paid hosting of other content. We’re still working on the details and expect to have a more formal plan and framework for this soon.
Mozilla is dedicated to promoting choice and innovation on the Internet. Personas extends on that mission by giving Firefox fans, both new and established, the ability to make the browser reflect their personality, interests and passions. This is the first of many steps to expand the catalog of available designs by reaching out to both established designers and the imagination of our community. After you give Personas a shot, let us know what you think. As always, we’ll be listening carefully to your feedback on how to make your browser more personal.
Install the Personas add-on for Firefox, watch a demo, or find out more by visiting getpersonas.com. Even if you’re not a current Firefox user, you can download Personas in less than a minute and begin asking yourself: “What will my browser wear today?”
– Suneel Gupta, on behalf of the Personas development team