[Project_owners] Getting to know you...

Asheesh Laroia friedfox.mozdev at asheesh.org
Fri May 27 02:23:58 EDT 2005

On Thu, 26 May 2005, Todd Ross wrote:

> Michael Vincent van Rantwijk wrote:
>>  I don't know any of you personally, but we have a common goal here, so 
>>  my question for you is; How old are you, if you don't mind me asking, 
>>  and what project(s) are you working on?

As someone earlier said, "I'll join the a/s/l thread."

Name: Asheesh Laroia
Age: 19
Online handle: paulproteus (in case you know me as that)
Project: Friedfox
Location: Currently in Rochester, NY, at home with my parents for a week.

Usually in Baltimore, Maryland, USA, attending the Johns Hopkins 

Friedfox is a quick hack of the Firefox installer for Windows so that it 
installs unconditionally, doing its best without Administrator privileges. 
It's been hard to continue development without root on a Windows machine 
(I run GNU/Linux on all my workstations), but I'll be setting up a virtual 
machine for Friedfox development soon.

Friedfox was intended so I could do a one-click install of Firefox 
wherever I sat down to use a Windows machine.

> This may be an unpopular opinion, but I just don't think it's ready yet.

I find this a very interesting statement.  On one hand, I believe that 
Firefox is very much still more a "project" than a product.  For Ubuntu 
and Debian users like me, that project gets packaged by Debian into 
something that fits in a consistent way into my computing environment.

For Windows users, some work has to be done by the user that would 
normally be part of the product.  For example, selecting extensions to 
download (it comes with none, despite how many of them rock),

In the Free Software world, GNU writes code, and GNU/Linux distributors 
package it up.  We're moving away from "distributions" like Slackware and 
toward "products" like RedHat Enterprise Linux and Ubuntu; we're moving 
from balls of code to systems that are well-integrated.  In the same 
sense, I would be very interested to see more *products* based on Firefox, 
like a Windows "Megafox" that, on install, grabs the latest version of 
Sun's Java, Macromedia's Flash, and other commonly-desired plugins and 
that grabs cool extensions like Greasemonkey and Adblock by default.  I 
would be happier recommending such a "Megafox" to my Windows-using 
non-techie friends.

At the same time, the answer that it is not "ready yet" begs the question, 
"Ready for what?".  To me, Mozilla XPCOM has become the real Java: It 
seems to me to be the current home of cross-platform GUI programming for 
the end-user.  Clearly, it's in use.  So, I'm curious: what does "ready" 
mean for you?

(By the way, I also think Java programming didn't take off in the way Sun 
wanted because they don't have native widgets.  That problem was worsened 
by Sun's non-native ugly widget toolkits being EXTREMELY SLOW.)

-- Asheesh.

Ralph's Observation:
 	It is a mistake to let any mechanical object realise that you
 	are in a hurry.

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