Feeds

Mozilla lays foundation for web's next 100 years

Freedom beyond Firefox

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

The Mozilla Foundation is best known for Firefox, but as its head Mitchell Baker recently told us, the group's mission is not merely to produce a browser that kills Internet Explorer.

"The mission is to build certain qualities into the human experience of the internet. We are in a reasonable spot with the browser, and Firefox is important for the immediate future. But we've barely started in user control," Baker said.

What exactly was Baker talking about?

According to executive director Mark Surman, that mission involves efforts to make the web more open by removing its technological, corporate and cultural choke points and getting more regular people to give a damn about where the internet will be in the next 100 years - not just those already working in tech.

This includes something called Drumbeat, a project Surman is leading.

Among Drumbeat's initiatives is a new set of independent programs in open-web technologies like HTML 5 where students' work is rated and scored using a peer-rating system designed to go beyond the standard Microsoft or Cisco certifications.

Outside of coding, there's work to devise legal agreements we can actually read and comprehend instead of just blowing through and clicking "yes" when signing up to services. The Foundation also wants to give individuals control over their digital identities and freedom to move in the cloud, rather than leaving their sign-in and all their data with a handful of default giants like Microsoft, Google, and Facebook.

"Clearly, the goal is to get out to a new circle of people who care about the web already but who don't have a way to participate," Surman told us during a recent interview. "We don't know what the market will be 100 years from now, but we do know that a dramatic increase in levels of ownership and participation in the web will be critical."

Surman is pushing Drumbeat through community meetings and engagements at events like the recent FOSDEM in Brussels and "local drumbeats" later this month in Brazil. He's also looking for involvement through new projects, with 29 listed on Mozilla's Wiki at the time of writing.

Getting the participation and interest means both technology and non-technology projects.

The next step in data security

Next page: Breaking the lock

More from The Register

next story
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Mathematica hits the Web
Wolfram embraces the cloud, promies private cloud cut of its number-cruncher
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
Mozilla shutters Labs, tells nobody it's been dead for five months
Staffer's blog reveals all as projects languish on GitHub
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
iOS 8 Healthkit gets a bug SO Apple KILLS it. That's real healthcare!
Not fit for purpose on day of launch, says Cupertino
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.