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Anyone 'losing faith'?

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d_g

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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 2:20 am

The re-naming debacle. No-one asking us about it. Devs won't listen to ideas from the community and frequently reject good ones out-of-hand no matter how compelling the arguements for them. The road-map is regarded as some gospel document that must not be challenged. 'Firefox' is slower than IE anyway and nothing seems to be changing on that front. FF now seems to be the browser a few devs think it should be, rather than a broswer designed for what the community wants or needs.

I feel Mozilla is becoming more like a corporation that doesn't listen to it's customers everyday. I certainly can't think of it as 'community development'. Maybe it never was supposed to be that. But if so why do we even have a 'Firefox features' forum when the devs say there will be no more new features?

Bit of a ramble but, hey, just saying it as I see it :)

(edit - title now spelt correctly :), thankyou c∂n!)
Last edited by d_g on February 12th, 2004, 7:54 am, edited 3 times in total.

Dunderklumpen
 
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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 2:24 am

The lack of information and the lack of communication between users and developers is a problem. Mscott, developing Thunderbird is an exception it seemes and I for one would like to see more developers just spending some time in here - from time to time. And loosing fate?

Well the software is great - just not the politics behind it.
Last edited by Dunderklumpen on February 11th, 2004, 2:33 am, edited 1 time in total.

trash80
 
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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 2:28 am

no my faith is pretty tight

FF slower than IE? not on my W2K machine. how often do M$ listen to IE users anyway? :D the danger with feature-itis is that it'll just add bloat. lets trust the developers to create the best lean mean browser... and if you don't like it use something else. simple as that.

TheOneKEA

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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 2:28 am

Dunderklumpen wrote:The lack of information and the lack of communication between users and developers is a problem. M.Scott, developing Thunderbird is an exception it seemes and I for one would like to see more developers just spending some time in here - from time to time. And loosing fate?

Well the software is great - just not the politics behind it.


I agree with you - the developers seem to be almost unapproachable on matters concerning this project. They just don't make themselves available to the community. If they did I doubt there'd be so much discontent over the curent state of affairs.
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sboulema
 
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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 2:29 am

i agree.
Mscott always has a nice change list of every tb build. would like to see that the same happenend for firefox.

Dunderklumpen
 
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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 2:37 am

Exactly - and take a look in the Thunderbird section. Read the many postings in there. Is it just me or is the attitude somewhat different? I mean it looks as if there is less whining, less complaining and a better understanding for the development of the software. The communication between users and the developer in there is the main reason for me still be using Thunderbird - eventhought there are, in fact, some other clients out there that is better (in my opinion).

bengoodger

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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 2:40 am

dangrey wrote:The re-naming debacle. No-one asking us about it. Devs won't listen to ideas from the community and frequently reject good ones out-of-hand no matter how compelling the arguements for them. The road-map is regarded as some gospel document that must not be challenged. 'Firefox' is slower than IE anyway and nothing seems to be changing on that front. FF now seems to be the browser a few devs think it should be, rather than a broswer designed for what the community wants or needs.

I feel Mozilla is becoming more like a corporation that doesn't listen to it's customers everyday. I certainly can't think of it as 'community development'. Maybe it never was supposed to be that. But if so why do we even have a 'Firefox features' forum when the devs say there will be no more new features?

Bit of a ramble but, hey, just saying it as I see it :)


I'm not quite sure how many times I need to explain this, maybe I should stick it in a FAQ or something, but Firefox is not a community driven project. While it gets a lot of benefit from testing, ideas, patches, etc, the prerogative for deciding what will and will not go into the product has always been held by the development group. This is not a new thing, this was in fact the reason this project was created.

At times, it seems there are so few compelling arguments in this forum and such a lot of "I want it this way damnit!" and "this way sucks." A small number of people have made genuinely worthwhile comments on various features in the product and those comments have been or are being folded in.

I'm sorry if you feel disenfranchised by the process. If you have suggestions as far as any feature or bug goes, please try and articulate them in an effective manner. Stonewalling is never effective.

Firefox is where it is today, having made the massive gains it has primarily because of strong leadership - the key differentiating factor between it and the Mozilla suite. More than anything else, the successes in adoption and kudos gained in the media are signs that this formula is working.

DurianCS

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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 2:41 am

Fully agree. I love the TB development process, and TB itself is sufficient, no more no less. So I continue following TB.
(thanks Scott + contributors)

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bengoodger

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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 2:41 am

Dunderklumpen wrote:... there is less whining, less complaining and a better understanding for the development of the software...


Indeed!

"Those who can't do, whine."

TheOneKEA

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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 2:47 am

bengoodger wrote:
dangrey wrote:The re-naming debacle. No-one asking us about it. Devs won't listen to ideas from the community and frequently reject good ones out-of-hand no matter how compelling the arguements for them. The road-map is regarded as some gospel document that must not be challenged. 'Firefox' is slower than IE anyway and nothing seems to be changing on that front. FF now seems to be the browser a few devs think it should be, rather than a broswer designed for what the community wants or needs.

I feel Mozilla is becoming more like a corporation that doesn't listen to it's customers everyday. I certainly can't think of it as 'community development'. Maybe it never was supposed to be that. But if so why do we even have a 'Firefox features' forum when the devs say there will be no more new features?

Bit of a ramble but, hey, just saying it as I see it :)


I'm not quite sure how many times I need to explain this, maybe I should stick it in a FAQ or something, but Firefox is not a community driven project. While it gets a lot of benefit from testing, ideas, patches, etc, the prerogative for deciding what will and will not go into the product has always been held by the development group. This is not a new thing, this was in fact the reason this project was created.


Then it needs to be made as clear as possible, because there seem to be too many people who believe that this is a community-driven open source project, when it is apparently not, as you have just said.

bengoodger wrote:At times, it seems there are so few compelling arguments in this forum and such a lot of "I want it this way damnit!" and "this way sucks." A small number of people have made genuinely worthwhile comments on various features in the product and those comments have been or are being folded in.

I'm sorry if you feel disenfranchised by the process. If you have suggestions as far as any feature or bug goes, please try and articulate them in an effective manner. Stonewalling is never effective.


We're trying, but this leads into another thing that people have mentioned: lack of developer content. Dunderklumpen says that mscott makes himself available on a regular basis in the Thunderbird forums, and that as a result people feel a greater sense of contact with him and feel that their concerns and feedback are being responded to. Can you do the same? Or find the someone who can?

bengoodger wrote:Firefox is where it is today, having made the massive gains it has primarily because of strong leadership - the key differentiating factor between it and the Mozilla suite. More than anything else, the successes in adoption and kudos gained in the media are signs that this formula is working.


That may be true. But a leader can't stay in the lead if his followers feel that he no longer pays adequate attention to him.

I feel that a lot of problems here will be solved if the people who posted in this forum felt the same sense of feedback that Dunderklumpen has speculated on. If they did, then perhaps the whining may never have arisen.

As you just said, "Those that can't do, whine." Give us something to do and perhaps we'll stop whining ;)
Last edited by TheOneKEA on February 11th, 2004, 2:48 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Dunderklumpen
 
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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 2:47 am

bengoodger wrote:
Dunderklumpen wrote:... there is less whining, less complaining and a better understanding for the development of the software...


Indeed!

"Those who can't do, whine."


Well, I think it has to do with the simple fact that there is a communication between the developer and the user in there. There are as many problems, bugs and snags as there is in here - maybe not as much since I think there is more Firefox users than there is Thunderbird users but I still think that better communication is the main reason.

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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 2:50 am

Dunderklumpen wrote:
bengoodger wrote:
Dunderklumpen wrote:... there is less whining, less complaining and a better understanding for the development of the software...


Indeed!

"Those who can't do, whine."


Well, I think it has to do with the simple fact that there is a communication between the developer and the user in there. There are as many problems, bugs and snags as there is in here - maybe not as much since I think there is more Firefox users than there is Thunderbird users but I still think that better communication is the main reason.


Exactly.
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bengoodger

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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 2:58 am

Dunderklumpen wrote:I for one would like to see more developers just spending some time in here - from time to time.


Aside from the work that Pierre has done improving Bookmarks and digging around in the toolkit, patches from individual contributors and the infrasturcture work Brian has been doing on an ongoing basis, Firefox is basically just me at the moment. I don't think many people understand or appreciate that. I don't think people realize that I have to:

- draw up feature lists and roadmaps, plan for feature development and bug fixing (basically act as project manager)
- ensure that the limited set of engineering, build, graphic design and testing resources we have are in position to execute the plans above (project management again)
- participate in the above groups to make sure things are going smoothly
- design new features (engineering)
- actually do most of the coding (engineering)
- manage the website from release to release (web design and development, QA, documentation and product marketing)
- provide technical resources and documentation for Mozilla related events (developer days, on the spot opinions, etc)
- johnny on the spot for any business development need that arises.
- help bart with product marketing
- help tackle huge non-code issues such as project naming
- and last, despite long weeks, weekends spent working, mental exhaustion... still find time to read project forums (even if I don't get time to respond to everything), where people are most often helpful and friendly.

Things are a lot more complicated than for Thunderbird too. This app has less in common with the suite that spawned it than Thunderbird does, most of the new-app infrastructure work that goes on that is shared by Tbird is done in Firefox first, and the browser is a far more popular and thus contentious realm. This was also the case at Netscape, where I worked in the browser group for 3 years.

For those that want to complain, look at the list above. Could you do any better?

The only thing I wish I could do better is delegate. The reason I have difficulty with this is that I'm generally a pretty distrustful person. I have years of experience seeing work get done that is logically counter to creating a successful browser for the marketplace - seeing the work of a few talented people squandered by incompetence and temporal greed. I set high personal standards as far as user experience goes (this permeates all aspects of the product experience, from the website through the app to the support site network) and I demand the same of the people I work closely with. They demand the same of me. To play in the space with the big boys, like Microsoft and Apple (Apple is a lot smaller but I have a heck of a lot of respect for their UE) we need to set standards that are no less than theirs, if not higher. There should be no compromises, where compromises are practically avoided. It is this attitude that riles a lot of people here I know, because it often manifests as big picture view that overlooks special interests. But that's why we're busting our collective posteriors making our app as safely open and extendable as possible, so that hopefully no user should leave dissatisfied.

-Ben
Last edited by bengoodger on February 11th, 2004, 3:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

bengoodger

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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 3:01 am

TheOneKEA wrote:That may be true. But a leader can't stay in the lead if his followers feel that he no longer pays adequate attention to him.


The thing is, feedback from each successive release leads me to believe we are doing far more right than we are wrong. Feedback from the wider "community".

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Post Posted February 11th, 2004, 3:04 am

bengoodger wrote:
TheOneKEA wrote:That may be true. But a leader can't stay in the lead if his followers feel that he no longer pays adequate attention to him.


The thing is, feedback from each successive release leads me to believe we are doing far more right than we are wrong. Feedback from the wider "community".


Where is this feedback?


And as I said above, if you don't have the time to patrol this forum, then you need to find someone who does, so that you can concentrate on that long list of tasks and we can feel like the Firefox devs are willing to hear our concerns.
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