jeudi 20 mars 2008

En vrac

Notes

[1] Firefox 3 is so much better than Safari (and Firefox 2) that I’m going to stick with it full-time. It uses less memory than Safari, feels a lot faster, has a nicer interface, supports multiple search engines, and currently gets my thumbs up as the best browser of the moment. I can’t believe it feels faster than Safari, but there you go.

samedi 1 mars 2008

A few random things about Netscape, 1994-2008

Today, Netscape has stopped providing their users with updates to their browser. The Netscape Archive page says:

Given AOL's current business focus and the success the Mozilla Foundation has had in developing critically-acclaimed products, we feel it's the right time to end development of Netscape branded software. Read the history page for more details about this decision.

This is the final nail in Netscape's coffin. In my opinion, Netscape really died in July 2003, aka The Big Final Netscape Lay-Off, which followed the $750 million AOL-MSFT agreement.

Netscape, take a spin under the big top T-shirt

One of my old Netscape T-shirts

I have fond memories of Netscape. The team was amazing, including the European dream team. Jim Barksdale was an impressive leader, with tons of useful and funny quotes for every occasion, including the Three rules of the snake.

  1. If you see a snake, do not call a committee on snakes, do not make a phone call about the snake, do not send e-mails about the snake - kill the snake
  2. Never play with dead snakes
  3. All opportunities start off looking like a snake.

Another one, this one from the VP Marketing of the time (why can't I remember his name?), about innovation:

If it works, it's a product. If it doesn't work, we'll call it "market research".

Here is another quote form Jim Barksdale, during the Senate hearing against Microsoft for violating the Antitrust law (and ultimately killing Netscape):

"How many of you use Intel-based PCs in this audience, not Macintoshes?" he asked. Several hands went up. Barksdale continued: "Of that group who use PCs, how many of you use a PC without Microsoft's operating system?" When all the hands went down, Barksdale turned to the Senate panel and said, "Gentlemen, that is a monopoly."

Netscape has pioneered many different ideas and practices. Here are a few:

  • Advertising on Web sites
  • Parallel development of products
  • Successful IPO of a not yet profitable company :-)
  • Massively distributing software products on the Internet
  • Pushing Beta version on the Web and getting feedback
  • ... and many others for that I don't remember from the top of my head.

But the boldest move Netscape did may be the launch of the Mozilla project, which has helped change perception of the general public on Open Source and made the Web a better place...

If, dear reader, you have good memories of the Netscape era, feel free to leave them here (email address not displayed nor checked. Click on Prévisualiser first then Envoyer to publish. Comments are moderated).