Firefox extensions: A strategy born of compromise

Mozilla looks uber-smart for coming up with an easy way for developers to extend its open-source Firefox browser, but this wasn't its original intent, as this interview with Asa Dotzler suggests.

Firefox has surpassed 22 percent global market share, its popularity driven in large part by the thousands of extensions and add-ons that personalize the Firefox experience for diverse users.

Intriguingly, however, Firefox's extensions strategy didn't start out as a strategy at all. It was a compromise to keep the project's developer base together, as Mozilla's Asa Dotzler explains in this interview I conducted with colleague John Newton earlier this week.

The History of Firefox Extensions - An Interview with Asa Dotzler from Matt Asay on Vimeo.

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About the author

    Matt Asay is chief operating officer at Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu Linux operating system. Prior to Canonical, Matt was general manager of the Americas division and vice president of business development at Alfresco, an open-source applications company. Matt brings a decade of in-the-trenches open-source business and legal experience to The Open Road, with an emphasis on emerging open-source business strategies and opportunities. He is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not an employee of CNET. You can follow Matt on Twitter @mjasay.

     

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