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Mozilla.org: Mozilla Development Roadmap

Apr 04, 2003, 16:00 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Brendan Eich, David Hyatt)

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"But incremental development of the kind we've had since 1.0 is not enough for a healthy open source project. It's clear to us that Mozilla needs a new roadmap, one that charts a path to an even better future. Below we will propose a new application architecture based on the Gecko Runtime Environment (GRE), which can be shared between separate application processes. Before discussing the rationales and trade-offs, here are the implications and key elements:

  1. Switch Mozilla's default browser component from the XPFE-based Navigator to the standalone Phoenix browser. Note: the Phoenix user interface is defined entirely using XUL. So in preferring Phoenix, we are not deprecating XUL. We are demonstrating how XUL is a sound basis for fast, cross-platform applications such as Phoenix.
  2. Develop further the standalone mail companion application to Phoenix already begun as Minotaur, but based on the new XUL toolkit used by Phoenix (this variant has been codenamed Thunderbird). Note: the Phoenix toolkit is a compatible reimplementation of the XPFE toolkit, with added features such as customizable toolbars. We are not starting a new C++ GUI toolkit, we are simply moving to the next generation XUL toolkit.
  3. Deliver a Mozilla 1.4 milestone that can replace the 1.0 branch as the stable development path, then move on to make riskier changes during 1.5 and 1.6. The major changes after 1.4 involve switching to Phoenix and Thunderbird, and working aggressively on the next two items.
  4. Fix crucial Gecko layout architecture bugs, paving the way for a more maintainable, performant, and extensible future.
  5. Continue the move away from an ownership model involving a large cloud of hackers with unlimited CVS access, to a model, more common in the open source world, of vigorously defended modules with strong leadership and clear delegation, a la NSPR, JavaScript, Gecko in recent major milestones, and Phoenix..."

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