Jimmy Wales was not the only hero of the open web community attending and presenting at Online. Tristan Nitot, Founder & Principal of Mozilla Europe attracted a packed audience to hear about Mozilla’s software design philosophy and process.
Nitot gave an unashamed commercial for Firefox, but given that a show of hands in the room revealed that the majority of attendees already use Firefox as their preferred browser, he found himself mostly preaching to the converted. As for the non-users, he cheekily told them, "You know you are wrong, just talk to person sitting next to you."
At present Firefox has 120 million users, representing an 18% world share overall – a better share in most of Europe. This has been achieved with no advertising budget – purely word-of-mouth endorsement.
The software development process allows anyone in the world to suggest code for an add-on or bug fix as well as a 40 strong in house development team. Before release, software is tested by the development team, 100s of daily contributors, 1,000s of occasional contributors, 10,000s of nightly testers and 500,000 beta testers.
The result of this collaborative approach is that some 37% of code has come from the web community itself.
Information Today, International Correspondent