Random LQ Stats – Browser Update

I like to post random LQ stats every once and a while, and with the recent release of Firefox 3, now seems like a good time for a browser update. Here are the stats for July:

Firefox 66.05%
Internet Explorer 20.86%
Mozilla 4.98%
Opera 4.28%
Safari 2.07%
Konqueror 1.59%

Now, breaking down the Firefox numbers:

3.0 56.52% 18.02% 12.66% 1.59% 1.37% 1.34%

I have to admit that I’m a bit surprised, but quite impressed with the uptake up Firefox 3. To have well over 50% of the Firefox market share that rapidly is a remarkable feat. If they’d just fix the CSS overflow bug that makes LQ code tags scroll horizontally, it’d be even better ;)


Some LinuxQuestions.org Stats

Every once and a while I like to post a quick update that includes some stats about LQ. Here are a couple for the month of October 2007.

* A total of 277 distinct Browsers visited LQ last month. Those with more than 1%:

Firefox 61.99%
IE 24.14%
Mozilla 5.50%
Opera 4.29%
Konqueror 2.18%
Safari 1.53%

Operating Systems
* A total of 23 distinct Operating Systems visited LQ last month. Those with more than 1%:

Windows 52.99%
Linux 43.09%
Macintosh 3.10%

Browser and OS combo
* The top 5 Browser/OS combos are:

Firefox / Linux 33.24%
Firefox / Windows 26.66%
IE / Windows 23.84%
Mozilla / Linux 5.33%
Opera / Linux 2.30%
Konqueror / Linux 2.30%

RSS feed
* The RSS feed with the most subscribers is LQ Latest Threads. RSS readers with more than 1%

Google Feedfetcher 77%
Google Desktop 10%
Firefox Live Bookmarks 3%
Firefox Live Bookmarks (Version 1) 2%
Bloglines 1%
MyYahoo 1%

* 95.51% of visitors had Java support
* 88.29% of visitors had Flash support
* 97% browse with a screen resolution 1024×768 or greater

LQ is certainly not representative of the web as a whole, but interesting nonetheless. Enjoy.


Mozilla Prism

It looks like Adobe AIR and Microsoft Silverlight are going to get some competition from Mozilla. From the announcement:

Mozilla Labs is launching a series of experiments to bridge the divide in the user experience between web applications and desktop apps and to explore new usability models as the line between traditional desktop and new web applications continues to blur.

Unlike Adobe AIR and Microsoft Silverlight, we’re not building a proprietary platform to replace the web. We think the web is a powerful and open platform for this sort of innovation, so our goal is to identify and facilitate the development of enhancements that bring the advantages of desktop apps to the web platform.

The first of these experiments is based on Webrunner, which we’ve moved into the Mozilla Labs code repository and renamed to Prism.

Prism is an application that lets users split web applications out of their browser and run them directly on their desktop.


At least for now, this doesn’t look quite as robust as Adobe AIR (and I’ve not looked at Silverlight too closely) but it does seem like a natural progression for Firefox. You have to wonder how many of these environments developers are going to embrace. I’d guess there will be a small number of players that remain standing after a shakeout. AIR and Prism both plan to support Linux, Mac OS X and Windows.


Email Call to Action

Mozilla recently made this announcement regarding Thunderbird.

Mozilla has been supporting Thunderbird as a product since the beginning of the Foundation. The result is a good, solid product that provides an open alternative for desktop mail. However, the Thunderbird effort is dwarfed by the enormous energy and community focused on the web, Firefox and the ecosystem around it. As a result, Mozilla doesn’t focus on Thunderbird as much as we do browsing and Firefox and we don’t expect this to change in the foreseeable future. We are convinced that our current focus – delivering the web, mostly through browsing and related services – is the correct priority. At the same time, the Thunderbird team is extremely dedicated and competent, and we all want to see them do as much as possible with Thunderbird.

We have concluded that we should find a new, separate organizational setting for Thunderbird; one that allows the Thunderbird community to determine its own destiny.

Mozilla is exploring the options for an organization specifically focused on serving Thunderbird users. A separate organization focused on Thunderbird will both be able to move independently and will need to do so to deepen community and user involvement. We’re not yet sure what this organization will look like. We’ve thought about a few different options. I’ve described them below. If you’ve got a different idea please let us know.

I agree with this post by glyn the more I think about it:

What’s worrying about this is that it seems to demonstrate a tunnel vision, where Firefox (and making money from it) are foregrounded above everything else. The fact is, email is a critical application, even if more and more people use Web-based mail (as I do – but I still use Thunderbird too). Moreover, Mozilla is a foundation, and that implies looking at the bigger picture, not concentrating – as a company might – on the success of its main “product”.

The open source world needs Thunderbird – indeed, the wider software community needs it. Although I accept that it lacks the community that Firefox has generated, that is not a reason to jettison it, and hope for the best. On the contrary: the very difficulties that Thunderbird has in firing up a community and in moving forward are precisely why the Mozilla Foundation should keep it under its wing.

It’s not the Firefox Foundation, but the Mozilla foundation. The Foundation having a big picture view is an important thing. It’s clear that Firefox and Thunderbird are much different beasts. The email space has way more competition than the web browser space. Add in the proliferation of web-based email and things get even more complex. It’s still not clear to me that completely dropping the project from the foundation is the best course of action though. It seems like something a corporation would have to do, not the Mozilla Foundation. Mitchell has outlined several options in her blog post. It will be interesting to watch which way the community leans as this moves forward.


Michael Dell Uses Ubuntu and Firefox

I was surprised to see that Michael Dell Officially uses both Ubuntu and Firefox on his home laptop. Not surprised that he uses it, mind you…just surprised that it’s so authoritatively posted. Great to see!



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