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Mozilla Building Android Based Mobile OS

CmdrTaco posted about 3 years ago | from the works-for-me dept.

Android 62

karthikmns writes "The Firefox Mozilla has taken a step to develop an all new OS for mobile platforms. This internet browser giant has launched a Boot 2 Gecko(B2G) project. Similar to Firefox B2G is also an open source project which aims to clean up mobile fragmentation."

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Dupe. (5, Informative)

jra (5600) | about 3 years ago | (#36884718)

Pay attention, editors.

Re:Dupe. (2)

goldspider (445116) | about 3 years ago | (#36884798)

It's not a dupe if it immediately follows an iProduct flamefest article.

Re:Dupe. (5, Informative)

Desler (1608317) | about 3 years ago | (#36884970)

It's worse than that. It's a blogspam dupe. The submitter is just trying to drive clicks to their "hoow" stuff works blog.

Re:Dupe. (2)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about 3 years ago | (#36885020)

It's worse than that - TFS is broken English and not even proofread.

Re:Dupe. (1)

drb226 (1938360) | about 3 years ago | (#36890314)

The Firefox Mozilla has taken a step...

Only a few words into TFS and your point is proven.

Re:Dupe. (2)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 3 years ago | (#36885088)

I think it's a big deal that Mozilla decided to make TWO independent OSes, both with the exact same goals, and both with even the same name, "Boot to Gecko." Why -not- have two news stories for each of the two identical projects?

Re:Dupe. (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 3 years ago | (#36885356)

well, it's only fitting to dupe the project then since they're just creating more fragmentation, with a stupid technology approach.

  first, there's already a open source based browser on the system, second, js/gekko is a stupid approach. third the system chosen is android because it's relatively easy to add hooks to phone calling, message reading etc. but why the fuck? I seriously hope that none of donated money is going to this shitfest of career advancement for some wanabe ui experts. how anyone could claim this would HELP with mobile fragmentation I don't get, except that you could install this on any android. yo dawg we heard you like layers so we put a layer under c++ under your java-layer running on your linux.

Re:Dupe. (1)

PCM2 (4486) | about 3 years ago | (#36886272)

first, there's already a open source based browser on the system

Have you ever actually USED the open source browser on Android? I'm using it right now from a Honeycomb tablet, and it's pretty painful. Pages render strangely, the auto-fit function seems to kick in even when it's disabled, it's slow, the bookmark UI is awful... I don't understand how Google can have one perfectly good browser and make another that's so pathetically lousy. Not saying Boot to Gecko is the way to fix that, but some competition in this regard would be desirable.

Re:Dupe. (1)

hawkinspeter (831501) | about 3 years ago | (#36886444)

Try the Dolphin browser - it's a lot better

Re:Dupe. (1)

AmberBlackCat (829689) | about 3 years ago | (#36889130)

They probably have to run a new copy of the article as many times as Google, Mozilla, or whoever the sponsor is, has paid them to do.

A 24 hour dupe. (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | about 3 years ago | (#36884744)

Wow. :)

Isn't that just Android then? (2)

Kenja (541830) | about 3 years ago | (#36884756)

Isn't an "Android based OS" called Android? And cleaning up mobile fragmentation is a laugh as XKCD [] pointed out. You'll just end up with yet another competing "standard".

Re:Isn't that just Android then? (1)

gandhi_2 (1108023) | about 3 years ago | (#36885052)

Is a "Unix based OS" always called "Unix"?

Re:Isn't that just Android then? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36889378)


Unix is operating system what has specifications of operating system API's (System Calls) to system libraries and system programs. And Unix systems has specific system programs and libraries to offer for application programs.

There are Unix operating systems and Unix-clones. Unix-clones are different by that they do not include all Unix specifications or Unix-clone systems does not offer all system programs and libraries.
Example Linux kernel is Unix-clone operating system. It has all features what you can expect from Unix operating system (multitasking, IPv4/6, Shared libraries etc) but it is not real Unix operating system as its OS API's (OS features) are not compatible (more advanced actually already).

So there are Unix operating systems and Unix-clones. There ain't "Unix based OS" as Operating System is Unix or Unix-clone. The "-based" is just such mumbo jumbo what is used by people who does not have a clue what technology is, so they call things as "Android-based system" or "linux-based OS" or "gecko-based browser". There are LInux operating system (= Linux kernel), Android software system (=Linux distribution) and Gecko HTML engine.

Re:Isn't that just Android then? (1)

neowolf (173735) | about 3 years ago | (#36885228)

My thoughts exactly. How would this help clean up mobile fragmentation? Develop yet another mobile platform?!?! Will it allow the same level of bloat that Firefox does?

Re:Isn't that just Android then? (1)

ByOhTek (1181381) | about 3 years ago | (#36885306)

That XKCD was the first thing I thought when reading TFS...

Re:Isn't that just Android then? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36886614)

From TFA, their building an OS around HTML (as oppose to, save Java/Android) for multiplatform support.

Their "fragmentation" includes all mobile OSes to date.

Re:Isn't that just Android then? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36889300)

There is no such operating system as "Android". There is operating system called Linux and it is used in many software systems (distributions as you can distribute code of Linux freely) using it, like Android and Ubuntu.

Re:Isn't that just Android then? (1)

hazydave (96747) | about 3 years ago | (#36900408)

I do know of a Kernel called Linux.. but an OS? Where do I find this... and when did Linus get so busy and toss out all the GNU and other GPL/FOSS code?

If this goes through... (1)

kakyoin01 (2040114) | about 3 years ago | (#36884764)

...we would no doubt see version 11 or 12 of this OS by the end of this year (regardless of whether or not it was released in said year).

Yeah, we know (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 3 years ago | (#36884830)

Yeah we know. You already posted this [] 14 hours ago.

Still on the front page (2)

Dunbal (464142) | about 3 years ago | (#36884838)

The dupe is still on the front page. Sometimes I wonder why I even bother. It's not like the editors do.

Where would you go? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36884902)

I mean, seriously... Where would you go? SlashDot is pretty much the only tech news aggregator that I visit daily. What better(?) alternatives are there and if you know any, why are you here?

Re:Still on the front page (1)

kakyoin01 (2040114) | about 3 years ago | (#36884968)

Slashdot is not a right, it's a service. Cut the editors some slack. I suppose we should be angry that they post so often so we can get off our lazy asses and learn about the news, then?

Re:Still on the front page (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 3 years ago | (#36884984)

Cut the editors some slack.

Yeah, poor guys are so overworked and underpaid. Must be why they can't even bother to do basic editing of the shit they post.

Re:Still on the front page (1)

kakyoin01 (2040114) | about 3 years ago | (#36885044)

Yeah, poor guys are so overworked and underpaid. Must be why they can't even bother to do basic editing of the shit they post.

And you complaining about this is going to

Re:Still on the front page (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 3 years ago | (#36885096)

By pointing out to them that people aren't satisfied with their laziness?

Re:Still on the front page (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 3 years ago | (#36885028)

funny, I thought slashdot was a means of making money for a small group of people that works because so many of us (a large group of people) read articles and moreover contribute them. You seem to be rebuking the large group of people for complaining about quality.

Re:Still on the front page (1)

kakyoin01 (2040114) | about 3 years ago | (#36885204)

Actually, I'm saying that mentioning that this is a duplication more than once (and taking the time to bash /. in the process) is...wait for it...a duplication. No way! And a rather pointless one at that.

Re:Still on the front page (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 3 years ago | (#36885226)

Far less pointless than someone who gets all worked up and whiny over it.

Re:Still on the front page (1)

kakyoin01 (2040114) | about 3 years ago | (#36885254)

Both of them are becoming very pointless. Agree to disagree, and help make the internet a better place.

Re:Still on the front page (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 3 years ago | (#36887334)

Some of us still hold to the flickering, nearly-extinguished candle-flame of hope that the slashdot editors would someday take notice of their user's complaints, and then attempt to improve the quality of their product

Re:Still on the front page (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36887426)

You must be new here, then (though, 864176 is a hell of a lot older than 2040114 like the person you're replying to who is just straight up defending /. right now)...

I gave up on that a long time ago. Now, I just know not to come to slashdot too often, and I usually miss a couple of good articles along with a couple of bad articles, and I miss a fair amount of the duplicates. Somewhere along the line, it seems to even out.

Re:Still on the front page (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 3 years ago | (#36889148)

I actually have another ID more than 12 years old, but can't remember it. was off slashdot for a few years in early 21st century

Re:Still on the front page (1)

Dunbal (464142) | about 3 years ago | (#36885300)

See the asterisk by my name? That means I pay for slashdot. If I don't like something about a service I subscribe to I will damned well say so.

Re:Still on the front page (1)

kakyoin01 (2040114) | about 3 years ago | (#36885332)

Thanks, I didn't know that until now. Forgive me for being wet behind the ears here.

Oh, goody... (1)

geminidomino (614729) | about 3 years ago | (#36884840)

Can't wait to see how the bugger up the UI on that one now. Of course, it probably won't compile until version 43 though.

Re:Oh, goody... (1)

Tackhead (54550) | about 3 years ago | (#36884988)

Can't wait to see how the bugger up the UI on that one now. Of course, it probably won't compile until version 43 though.

The Mozilla team has heard the complaints from Firefox users, and now we're pleased to annouce that Mozillaroid 43 For Tablets now features a full desktop-style UI, featuring seven toolbars at the top of the screen, and not one, but two status bars at the bottom of each screen.

Users unhappy with the changes in Mozillaroid 43 For Tablets are free to install "1080p4evar", "minimalism", and "toolbarbgone" extensions as soon as compatibility updates have been completed. (Note that Mozilla is not responsible for any memory leakage behaviors associated with third-party plug-ins, add-ons, and extensions.)

Users who find Mozillaroid 43 For Tablets unsuitable, even with minimalist UX extensions, are encouraged to try Firefox 9 For Desktops, for which the status bar, menu bar, URL bar, search box, window borders, and scroll bar have been removed since Firefox 8. In fact, the only things left in Firefox's desktop browser UI are four icons: the Google logo, the Firefox logo, a musical note, and a pair of boobs.

Re:Oh, goody... (1)

LighterShadeOfBlack (1011407) | about 3 years ago | (#36885070)

Of course, it probably won't compile until version 43 though.

So, what... about two weeks?

more than just a dupe (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36884886)

not only is this a dupe. look at the link address. "hoow" stuff works. it's a made for adsense blogspot account.

Re:more than just a dupe (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 3 years ago | (#36884942)

Yep, it's the submitter's own blog. It's not just a dupe it's blogspam dupe.

Cleaning up fragmentation of Os (2)

denisbergeron (197036) | about 3 years ago | (#36884900)

With a new fork OS ....

Re:Cleaning up fragmentation of Os (1)

Svartalf (2997) | about 3 years ago | (#36885314)

Heh... I'm asking, "What the fork?" myself...

It's a new OS basing itself off of the Linux kernel that Android's using- which is un-needed.

- You don't need to use Bionic for what they're doing- glibc will suffice. Especially if you're not allowing native code.
- You don't need the IPC framework Android's using- or any of the other deviations to the kernel. You could use the mainline Linux kernel for this. Really.

Gotta wonder what they're smoking in their pipe there. Let's just fragment the hell out of things a little bit more for something that won't get very far if they don't back down from the "no native code" position. I don't care HOW fast their engine is- javascript will be slower than Java/Dalvik, which is 10-40% slower than native code.

Re:Cleaning up fragmentation of Os (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36889502)

It is not a new OS.

The Linux kernel is full blown operating system and not "just a kernel what OS needs" what microkernels are.
How long it takes that people learn that Linux is monolithic kernel what means that it is whole operating system?
"Kernel" was the synonyme for "operating system" before Server-Client architecture was invented. Before that, operating systems ( read: kernels) were monolithic. Then Server-Client architecture changed the world by idea that software what build the operating system, were no longer just the kernel but it was tiny microkernel and servers doing single task and existed in kernel space or in user space (or both). And then the "operating system" synonym was invented and overthrow the "kernel" from it as almost all operating systems were using Server-Client architecture and many felt it was stupid to start developing a operating system with monolithic architecture like Linus did 1991 and caused a debate between him and Andrew S Tanenbaum who was (is) Server-Client supporter with his Minix.

No one, on these days, start a new operating system development. IT WOULD BE GRAZY! Think how long it has taken time to get Linux to state what it is now? Minix, FreeBSD, SunOS without forgetting HURD are operating systems what have been forgotten and Linux have gained their market share for everything else than desktop use (thanks to Microsoft monopoly power abusive and cleverness to avoid charges).

If you would start a new OS now, it would be next 5-10 years in same state as HURD is now. Between "unusable" and "working on developer computer". You could just sit down and say "Yeah.... I made own OS what no one can use".

Obligatory XKCD (1)

j1976 (618621) | about 3 years ago | (#36884924)

Android based mobile OS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36885130)

Now think about that. Android (A mobile OS) is being used as a basis for creating a mobile OS. Why does that seem like a rather silly duplication of effort to me?

Spam, but not really a dup ... (2)

BitZtream (692029) | about 3 years ago | (#36885132)

I mean, yes, technically it is a dupe, and its obviously adwords spam that Taco should have stopped (I think he lets timothy post using his account now) ...

But its the first time I've seen this story on slashdot. Its not a dupe for me simply because I've blocked several of the retarded editors, one of which approved the previous submission of this story.

So yea, it is technically a dupe, but an expected one since most people avoid whatever douche bag editor posted the previous version. Seems though that Taco now needs to be added to the douche bag editor list for contributing spam himself.

We had to destroy the OS to save it... (1)

Registered Coward v2 (447531) | about 3 years ago | (#36885156)

So they plan to "clean up fragmentation" by introducing yet another incompatible OS? Just like Firefox (which I use) has become the one true browser? My guess is this OS will be stillborne given it doesn't have any major company (with buckets of dollars) supporting it and it introduces yet another development platform but eschews some standard tools such as Java. I tried to get more info off of but no mention of Boot2 gecko.

Re:We had to destroy the OS to save it... (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 3 years ago | (#36885392)

*Lest you think this is just another Android phone with custom UI over it, think again—Mozilla has boldly said they won't be adopting the Java language used in Android, nor will they support native code programming.* some fucks(wanabe ui expert workers, you know, unemployed) just want to create ui concepts on mobile using gecko.

Re:We had to destroy the OS to save it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36892582)

No they are not. Mozilla has not developed own OS. Mozilla use same Linux operating system (read: Linux kernel is the operating system. LInux is not microkernel but monolithic kernel. If you dont know what is monolithic kernel and what difference is with Server-Client architecture, then please go educate yourself) what is use in Android, MeeGo, Harmattan (N9/N950), WebOS, Bada, LiMo and so on.

So they did not fragment the OS markets, they widens it by using Linux what is currently most popular operating system on mobile phones.

If Mozilla would develope own operating system, first they should choose do they use monolithic or server-client architecture for it. If later, then design a microkernel and servers for it. If first one, then just the kernel. And then when the OS is working, they should develop all system libraries and system programs for it or port the existing ones. Either way, it would take decade until they get something working in such manner that it can compete with Linux on mobile phones what is on today. But then LInux would be 4.0 version already...

What??? (1)

lennier1 (264730) | about 3 years ago | (#36885210)

An Mozilla-related OS?

Just lookat Firefox. The damn thing will be slow as hell and probably need a terabyte of RAM just to finish the boot-up process.

Re:What??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36919890)

It'll be fine. The problem with Firefox on mobiles is that mobiles don't have enough RAM to multi-task when Firefox is running. Mozilla is ingeniously solving that problem by not letting you run anything else.

Really?? (1)

Svartalf (2997) | about 3 years ago | (#36885224)

No native code? Sorry, guys...that's a Fail. Even the other JavaScript-like framework allows some native code because you're not going to get games and other push the envelope code to work well with things.

Why not MeeGo? (1)

Sentry360 (1694728) | about 3 years ago | (#36885278)

What I don't understand is why they didn't go with MeeGo? Nokia has been playing nice with Mozilla since the n770, and has undoubtedly had some of the most impressive versions of Mozila/Firefox Mobile. Why not use this code/relationship and help build a really nice OS, instead of some one of Linux implementation to appease the carriers...

Re:Why not MeeGo? (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 3 years ago | (#36885588)

Because they are fighting OS fragmentation by... rolling their own OS.

Amazing Summary (1)

psydeshow (154300) | about 3 years ago | (#36885462)

All hail The Firefox Mozilla, which will clean up mobile fragmentation using open source!

I thought that this was the worst /. summary I'd read in a while.

But then I considered the quality of code and product development coming out of the Mozilla Foundation these days. I think that six months from now, this summary will be in better shape than the project it describes. So, well done, karthikmns!

Lifted from Gizmodo (1)

BcNexus (826974) | about 3 years ago | (#36885928)

The article linked to is lifted from Gizmodo, word for word. Check the "From" link on the linked to site, and you'll see.

Re:Lifted from Gizmodo (1)

Samantha Wright (1324923) | about 3 years ago | (#36886844)

It also doesn't help that it implies Seabird has anything to do with B2G or is even a real idea. It was just a "wouldn't it be cool?" mockup. No one has plans for anything remotely resembling it.

Spread too thin (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36885954)

Firefox is an abomination right now, and they're going to develop a mobile OS instead. One with value to nobody but themselves, and a handful of jailbreakers.

Will webgl ever be properly implemented, so I can use more than one shader, or that drawing lines or points doesnt fall back to software, or will any of the myriad of bugs that make it completely unusable for anything but some basic one-shader spinny-cube demos? Even the various shims for IE work better, and faster.


smart people (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36885998)

Mozilla like the C++ standard committee is full of very smart people with not enough to do. They therefore fill their time with largely useless projects.

Fix the memory problems with Firefox first (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36888446)

Do they do any real world testing of Firefox? It crashes in Linux, Mac OS X, and Windows... I do push it with flash video (I don't like it, but what are you going to do), and having lots of tabs open for weeks at a time. As well as having no hard drive space (I use it as a DVR) and running out of RAM, it isn't a good environment, but it should be able to recover or handle it.

Another Linux with another name. (1)

luk3Z (1009143) | about 3 years ago | (#36891226)

Another Linux with another name.
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