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February 11, 2005

Mozilla's On Fire

tuoc    mozilla

Two weeks ago, Lanzone and I met with mozilla.org at their office in Mountain View. The main purpose was to discuss Ask Jeeves and mozilla.org working together and how Ask can make contributions to Mozilla that make sense.

I walked into the mozilla office and immediately recognized Chris Hoffman (one of their lead personnel) from my days at Borland. He and I chatted briefly about the Borland days and how so many people ended up at Netscape. I asked about the recent hire of Ben G. (one of Firefox lead developer) by Google. They didn't seem to be upset or too concerned. They said that they have other people who work elsewhere but contributed significantly to mozilla.org. This indicates that they expect Ben to continue contributing and not bring Google's bias into the equation any more than other company sponsored Mozilla contributors.

We went on to discuss three subjects: 1) AJ Desktop Search 2) AJ Leveraging Firefox Browser 3) XUL platform.

We discussed Ask Jeeves desktop search and the notion of open-sourcing it. We're open at two levels. Contributing just the core desktop indexing technology or possibly the entire desktop search application. They discussed how/what they would evaluate before accepting a major piece of code/product contribution: code size, internationalization, etc. Whether or not we partner with Mozilla on this effort, Chris and team thought it was a good idea for us to pursue overall.

We shared AJ view and support for open source standard, especially on the desktop, and their efforts on Firefox and Thunderbird, both of which I'm impressed with. I shared that Mozilla browser didn't do it for me but Firefox certainly converted many of AJ engineering (including myself) over exclusively to Firefox. We explained that we want to support and leverage Firefox by building extensions to and plug-ins within Firefox. We discussed the fact that it doesn't make sense for us to build a browser from scratch, but we think building Ask specific functionalities on top of Firefox to build an AJ-branded or co-branded browser could make sense in 2005.

Mozilla guys then talked abou XUL and how Firefox and Thunderbird were built using XUL. I was very impressed with the UI capabilities. I mentioned that we have a piece of technology called Octopus that may be very good to integrate into XUL platform. Rafael remembered Octopus because Mark Andreessen was an investor and on Octopus's board. It's ideal as a layer on top of the browser. I thought this could be an interesting extension or integrated into XUL. I said I would demo Octopus to them at some point.

They talked briefly about different vendor participation in different areas like security and so on. The Sunbird calendering project sounds like the next exciting innovation out of this group.

Lots of exciting possibilities to help take back the Web...

Tuoc Luong, EVP Technology

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Comments

Very interesting post. Looking forward to what this will lead to...

What would Octopus add to XUL ? Or are you talking about an Octopus-extension for Firefox ? If so, what would this enable people to do ?

Thanks in advance,

Martijn

Posted by: Martijn | Feb 12, 2005 7:29:56 AM

There are so many desktop search program out in the market but there are still some features that are missing in most of them. Can I take this post as an opportunity to highlight them and wish AJ includes them in their desktop search app.

# Should have an inbuilt viewer for most of the file formats and not just text or MS Office formats
# Should be extensible - ability to support third party plugins or viewers
# Should allow to run date specific search
# Should be able to index .mht, .chm & .hlp files

http://labnol.blogspot.com/2004/10/what-is-missing-in-desktop-search.html

Posted by: amit agarwal | Feb 14, 2005 9:21:36 PM

Mmmmm... I think I will keep my powder dry until I see what you do with "monitizing" Bloglines.

Sorry, but your track record worries me.

Posted by: John | Feb 15, 2005 7:47:55 AM

Tuoc Luong berichtet im Ask Jeeves Blog ?ine m?che Zusammenarbeit von Ask Jeeves mit Mozilla, den Entwicklern von Firefox, Thunderbird und anderen Open-Source-Programmen f?ernet-Benutzer. Nebenbei erf䨲t man, daߠAsk Jeeves dar?achde...

---------------
http://www.ptdd.com
http://www.yiwodisk.com

Posted by: ptdd group | Feb 18, 2005 8:59:43 PM

I knew that Mozialla was on fire but so is AskJeeves. This can only lead to better quality thru competition. Google is ahead but it's nice to see you guys are catching up :)

Posted by: Search Engine Blog | Apr 2, 2005 9:59:11 PM

Very Interesting!

Posted by: Online Sports Betting | Apr 19, 2005 3:52:32 PM

Im an avid fan of Firefox and would uninstall ie if I could. If anyone is interested there is a new firefox update to version 1.0.3 (or 1.7.7) and is available from the firefox download page mozilla.org/products/firefox/

Posted by: Gabe | May 1, 2005 10:04:15 PM

Nice blog. Keep it up. visit us at john

Posted by: john | Jul 9, 2005 3:15:41 AM

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Posted by: Franck | Jul 18, 2005 9:27:09 AM

Good article... very nice and interesting...

Posted by: Robby | Aug 2, 2005 3:34:16 PM

Good article... very nice and interesting...

Posted by: Robby | Aug 2, 2005 3:34:49 PM

There are so many desktop search program out in the market but there are still some features that are missing in most of them. Can I take this post as an opportunity to highlight them and wish AJ includes them in their desktop search app.

# Should have an inbuilt viewer for most of the file formats and not just text or MS Office formats
# Should be extensible - ability to support third party plugins or viewers
# Should allow to run date specific search
# Should be able to index .mht, .chm & .hlp files

Posted by: LR International | Aug 18, 2005 11:01:45 AM

Ask Jeeves Looking Good from Aqute Research
OK, having just posted about the dubious advisability of their Bloglines acquisition, I have to say at least Ask Jeeves are trying, and as someone said, if you aren't failing, you aren't trying hard enough.

Posted by: LR Aloe | Aug 18, 2005 10:51:18 PM

Great blog! Very well done. Keep up the great work...

Posted by: Casino | Oct 8, 2005 5:18:06 PM

Nice place! Good luck in your business!

Posted by: Markwer | Oct 9, 2005 11:59:43 PM

Excellent work, and awesome links! Hope you don’t mind me linking you! :)

Posted by: Gay | Oct 19, 2005 6:29:37 PM

# Should have an inbuilt viewer for most of the file formats and not just text or MS Office formats
# Should be extensible - ability to support third party plugins or viewers
# Should allow to run date specific search
# Should be able to index .mht, .chm & .hlp files

Posted by: LR | Oct 23, 2005 10:29:35 PM

Firefox murders IE.

Posted by: Surfing | Oct 27, 2005 11:13:13 PM

The comments to this entry are closed.

Opinions expressed here and in any corresponding comments are the personal opinions of the original authors, not of IAC Search & Media and may not have been reviewed in advance.

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