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JavaScript mastermind Brendan Eich leaps into the Mozilla CEO seat

alert('Co-founder, CTO takes helm at Firefox factory in reorg');

Firefox crop circle

JavaScript inventor Brendan Eich will take over as CEO of Mozilla Corporation – which is part of the Mozilla project he co-founded 15 or so years ago.

The Firefox-maker and Eich announced in blog postings that he will shift from the Moz chief technology officer chair to the chief exec's throne; acting-CEO Jay Sullivan will depart the browser builder once Eich is installed.

Sullivan, who has been with Moz for six years, become interim boss when Gary Kovacs stepped down from the top job in 2013.

Additionally, Mozilla China boss Li Gong will return Stateside to take over what will be an expanded chief operating officer role. Platform engineering, cloud services, research and IT will be on his todo list.

As part of the transition, the company confirmed to The Reg that it will be eliminating the CTO role, saying "the function will be fulfilled by a mixture of activities in our research group and in our engineering groups."

Co-founder Mitchell Baker will remain in her role as executive chairwoman. Baker and Eich have worked together on the Mozilla project since 1998 when Netscape put the source code to its web browser on mozilla.org. The Mozilla Foundation was born in 2003 and its corporation in 2005.

Eich, a programmer who has worked on operating-system and network level code, created JavaScript after joining Netscape in 1995. He has also contributed to the Rust language – Mozilla's ongoing project to, in a nutshell, make a "safe, concurrent" C++ alternative.

Today's transition comes as Mozilla continues to push into the mobile world with a line of phones that the company said will be available for as little as $25. Other projects, such as the Windows 8 Firefox browser, have been cut by the org.

"Mozilla is about people-power on the Web and Internet — putting individual users, who create as well as consume, above all other agendas. In this light, people-fu trumps my first love, which you might say is math-fu, code-fu or tech-fu (if I may appropriate the second syllable from kung fu)," Eich said in taking the CEO role.

"People around the world are our ultimate cause at Mozilla, as well as source of inspiration and ongoing help doing what we do." ®

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