the mozilla-netscape relationship


Aug 27, 2004
Credits/Source : Cnet.comMarch 15, 2005

Netscape's non-corporate development
Netscape was the gold standard for browsers in the '90s, and now it's climbing back to the top on the shoulders of Mozilla. Recent versions of Netscape were based on the Mozilla browser, and the new Netscape 8.0 is a fancy version of Mozilla Firefox.

In case you're wondering how all this works, Netscape, which is owned by AOL, is an investor in the Mozilla project. In return, it gets to build its browsers based on the Mozilla code. This arrangement works well for Mozilla developers, giving them the resources to write good code with no corporate strings attached. Netscape also wins, as it wraps some corporate extras around Mozilla's efforts, resulting in what is essentially a heavier version of Firefox.

This arrangement demonstrates how true innovation may best occur outside a corporate environment. I can't help but wonder about this kind of application in other industries. For example, what if car companies funded independent labs that didn't have to think about things like demographics? Our cars would probably have the handling of a Ferrari and get the mileage of a Toyota Prius. That's an arrangement I could live with.

Wayne Cunningham
Senior Editor, CNET[/b]
You'd have skinnable/themable cars, with lot of "extensions".... :}