Mozilla Labs in 2011

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Over the last couple of months the Mozilla Labs team discussed, argued and brainstormed the broad topics which we see on the horizon for 2011 and beyond – and want to explore this year. We came up with the five themes below. We would love to hear your feedback, ideas, comments – head over to our forum and join the discussion.

General:

We’re exclusively interested in projects which deliver clearly identified user satisfactions & values, solve user needs and optionally fix a broken current state. We take risks and believe that failure of individual projects is part of our mission and core to how we do things.

Process:

Our projects flow through three distinct and interlocked states – from Ideation to Experimentation to Incubation. Projects can and will drop out of the process at any given state if we decide the project fulfilled its purpose.

Themes:

For 2011 we identify the following guiding themes:

Apps & the Web Economy

Apps are quickly becoming a significant way for users to interact with the Web. We are bringing apps to the browser and the Open Web; adding what’s great about apps to the browser and what’s great about the Web to apps as well as exploring new features and interactions.

Do it for Me

With the browser being the central broker of our online interactions we have the unique opportunity to simplify the users’ life by automating interactions. Under the umbrella of “Do it for Me” we explore interactions which delight the user and find the balance between automation and direct user control.

The Web beyond the Browser

We see and further expect the Web to expand beyond the browser – users consume the Web through new device classes (mobile phones, tablets, TVs, etc) as well as through new classes of software such as apps in new ways. We are exploring this space, build tools to do so more efficiently and build prototypes.

You & your Friends (Social & Identity)

The Web becomes more and more interwoven with the social fabric. We explore this topic from multiple angles, using the browser as a central starting point.

Shared Data (Test Pilot)

The browser is often the ideal place to capture relevant data which, if aggregated, can help both users and developers gain valuable insights into trends and behaviors. We explore this space through the established Test Pilot program.