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300 comments

fp? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526852)

fp?

Re:fp? (-1, Redundant)

naylor83 (836780) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526857)

True

Re:fp? (-1, Offtopic)

cybathug (561017) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526868)

Acknowledging a first post is almost as bad as first posting in itself

Re:fp? (0, Offtopic)

naylor83 (836780) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526903)

And acknowledging a telling off for replying to a FP is how bad?

FREE TEEKID! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527009)

FREE TEEKID! FIRST AMENDMENT!

Re:FREE TEEKID! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527092)

Could you please be less coherent?

firefox (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526860)

"Come on..." Tiffany patted the slack cheek again, and this time saw some movement in the pale eyelashes. She slowed the patting down to a light stroke. The boy's head and shoulders lay in her lap. The door was wide open, and her father was nowhere to be seen.

She held the side of a cooled pewter mug to the bruise upon the boy's jaw, and raked her fingers through the thick buttery hair with lasciviousness that surprised her. Or, perhaps not.

He was a handsome young colt - maybe 17 or 18 - with the gleaming tanned skin of a boy at sea. The eyelashes unlocked slowly, revealing bright blues and snowy whites. He blinked a time or two, and his gaze locked upon her bosom, bare inches from his nose. He pinkened delightfully.

"Well, hello," she giggled as he tried valiantly hard to wrench his gaze from her bosom. She snuggled him closer, feeling very much like being a tease. "What happened to you?"

"There was a man..." he began drowsily, and winced in recollection. "Oh Lord, what a fool! There was a man - Josiah, that's it - and he asked me my business. I told him I was with the press gang, and the fellow knocked me on the head and fled!"

"My father is afraid of the sea," The boy openly gaped, trying to take in the enormous improbability of this statement. "Some men are, you know."

"They are?"

"Oh, indeed!"

She rippled her fingertips lightly over his shirt buttons, slipping them open as easy as kiss-my-hand. They crumbled away under her touch, exposing him slowly and gently. She peeled the shirt away from him on either side, catching her breath.
He was slender, yet beautifully defined and toned. His chest and shoulders would add inches as he aged, but the makings for a fine and imposing physique were there, creamy and dusted with gold. Her hand landed lightly on his firm stomach, her thumb stroked the tiny patch of hair sprouting at the centre of his chest with her thumb. He lifted his head slightly, and watched the trailing caress. His neat lips were slightly parted, his eyes wide - his whole face a picture of tremulous awe.

"Men are afraid of all kinds of funny things."

"Miss, you're undressing me," Jack gazed up at the maiden that cradled him, and felt her relaxed grey eyes fling arrows of reassurance at him.

"You're covered in beer," she soothed, and picked up a cloth that had been languishing in a bowl at her side. "You can't go back to your ship all sticky, can you now? Whatever will your Captain say?"

Jack drew a sharp intake of breath as the cloth stroked a trail from the centre of his chest to the hem of his breeches. She was not, he noted, aiming for the beer stains upon him.

"H-he wouldn't be pleased," he admitted - but nor would his Captain be pleased if he were to be late, with the clear evidence of coltish abandon crystallising upon his breeches. He struggled slightly to sit, but the girl pressed him back, scrubbing gentle circles around his left nipple. His breath quickened.

"Well, then we must tidy you a little."

Jack moaned and dropped his head back into her lap. The coarseness and warmth of the cloth, as it lavished friction and care upon his nipple, stirred up a tide of sensations in his chest that bolted directly to his loins. He felt the swelling there, the stickiness upon the tip of his rising bolt. The girl's chuckle floated into his ear - a breeze of honey that cloyed his intelligence, muddled his brain.

The cloth relaxed upon his chest as she released it, and he felt her fingertips walk over his stomach. He raised his lips to hers without thinking about it. Her mouth was warm and encouraging, and he felt the euphoric rush of being taught - guided along. Just as her tongue trailed a lazy path over his palate, tickling him behind the teeth, a warm palm caressed his rigid length, squeezing gently up and down the shaft, coaxing more wetness from him as the coarse hopsack material stroked and teased him. The delicate pressure around his manhood wrenched a lust-glutted moan from his throat, and he pulled back from the kiss, panting, panicking.

"You have raised your topgallants, I see," she giggled, and slipped her fingers through the braiding that kept his breeches closed. The cool flesh of her fingers met the scalding flesh of his cock; her spare hand moved to his exposed nipple, and the short, neat nails raked lightly over the taut, hot, and pebbled surface. Jack's eyes watered, his whole body vibrated with pleasure at this double assault upon him.

"I... ain't feeling very tidy," he confessed, and the girl just laughed at him - a pure tinkling sound bubbling from a merry, wide mouth. She stroked the palm of her hand to his head, and rubbed the slick, sensitive dome carefully. "I- Oh GOD!" Any sense that he had compiled, any line of reasonable enquiry - her name, perhaps? - fell cleanly through the back of his head.

"What were you going to say?"

Her words bypassed his brain, travelling straight to the core of need throbbing within his bollocks. He was hot, and close - dangerously close - his thighs tightened like strained spars, his shoulders clenched - please God, not yet - not yet!

"Glmphmmh," Jack babbled, his eyes about as wide as they would go. With one flick of her thumb over the tip of his pee-post, he was quite undone. His roar of shame and ecstasy was muffled as she closed her mouth over his, and he erupted voluminously into his breeches. His hips left the floor, his arms - hard and trembling - braced him against the throbbing tide of delight that pumped, that continued to pump, and would not ease, even as she moved her hand down his shaft and stroked him gently, exacerbating his sensitivity...

The final burst faded slowly, and she moved down with him, licking him with her kisses as his arms gave way. The girl pulled a strand of sodden hair from his face, and kissed his brow. His loins continued to throb, he was blazing hot between his legs, and he felt as if he'd been keelhauled.

Re:firefox (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526959)

What's a press gang?

Re:firefox (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526983)

The Navy would roam the streets of port towns, looking for drunks whom they would essentially kidnap and force to serve on board a Navy vessle. This was all perfectly legal.

Re:firefox (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526990)

Oh OK, thanks. See, that's why I come to Slashdot, for the educational porn.

Re:firefox (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527104)

paparazzi

obligatory link (5, Informative)

News for nerds (448130) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526863)

Re:obligatory link (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526897)

this isn't redundant, you stupid moderator

Re:obligatory link (-1, Offtopic)

leonmergen (807379) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526982)

But it is unethical to post such a link under your own username rather than anonymous... this way, it's kinda karma whoring, which is probably why the moderator modded you down.

Re:obligatory link (5, Funny)

gowen (141411) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526996)

But it is unethical to post such a link under your own username
Not really, because as a rule the concepts of ethical / unethical behaviour apply only to contexts that actually mean something, as opposed to the pointless accumulation of worthless slashdot karma, which means absolutely diddly-squat to anyone with a sense of proportion.

Re:obligatory link (3, Insightful)

djplurvert (737910) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527032)

Oh man is THAT right!!! SOME PEOPLE take slashdot WAY too seriously...

Re:obligatory link (3, Insightful)

uss_valiant (760602) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526999)

But it is unethical to post such a link under your own username rather than anonymous... this way, it's kinda karma whoring, which is probably why the moderator modded you down.
Unethical because of what? Staying logged in is just the natural way of posting and posting a mirror is always a good thing. Especially in this case, where the original article was /.ed before the 1st post.
And so what if the author of the post gets a few karma points.

Re:obligatory link (2, Insightful)

aussie_a (778472) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527033)

But it is unethical to post such a link under your own username rather than anonymous...

I believe in standing by whatever I say and never posting as an AC (unless I accidently do so due to being on another computer). This includes mirrors. I've seen many people on slashdot share the ethic of not posting as an AC (which the coders perpetuate by giving anonymous people a degrading name).

Re:obligatory link (4, Funny)

zCyl (14362) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527193)

this isn't redundant, you stupid moderator

Technically, posting a mirror is informative redundancy. :)

Re:obligatory link (2, Funny)

Hal_Porter (817932) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527080)


Of course, it never quite dawned on us in the beginning that everything we were doing would someday be so scrutinized by the public eye. When I added Cookies are delicious delicacies as the tongue-in-cheek description of site cookies in our Options window, I did so because describing something so complicated in such a small space was quite frankly the last thing I wanted to worry about after rewriting the cookie manager.


What a wanker.

Then what exactly is Open ? (5, Interesting)

Gopal.V (532678) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526864)

As much as I agree on granting commit access to anyone worthy of it .. I absolutely do not like the XFree86 way of "We take only patches" kind of elite bastards (Linus comes close to pissing me off, but he manages to show the other side as well on a few good days).

Hopefully firefox will not go into that Elitist arena which blocks out young developers...

All that said, I had to work for 3 months almost full time to get commit access on what I work on . But we've had a guy who would steam roll the patch database with useless patches and report all kinds of pedantic bugs to pester us into giving commit access (and for his notice, that doesn't get you anywhere).

A single strategy doesn't work for all types :)

Re:Then what exactly is Open ? (4, Insightful)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526901)

well.. if they get too elitst.. just start your own branch.

that's what being open is about..

Re:Then what exactly is Open ? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526914)

if they get too elitst.. just start your own branch.
... and don't accept any submissions from them - that'll show the bastards, eh?

Re:Then what exactly is Open ? (4, Insightful)

Lonewolf666 (259450) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527124)

It WILL show them if most users switch to your version. Which currently seems to happen with X.org vs. XFree86

Re:Then what exactly is Open ? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526910)

Hopefully firefox will not go into that Elitist arena which blocks out young developers...

You were NOT invited to make that comment, if we want to hear from you we'll call you and then you can speak, otherwise just keep reading and shut up, mkay?

Yours,
The FireTrucks Team,
Peak View,
CA 31337

Re:Then what exactly is Open ? (1)

10Ghz (453478) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527218)

Linus comes close to pissing me off, but he manages to show the other side as well on a few good days).


What's wrong with Linus? How should he behave in your opinion?

They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (5, Insightful)

Dancin_Santa (265275) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526872)

They say loudly that they are only willing to accept developers to the project that they have vetted themselves, no one need apply. And with this attitude in front of them, they drive away people who want to help but are unsure of their abilities.

Then they say that they want people to submit patches and pitch in to help develop the product. But how is anyone supposed to do that without being a member? Well, obviously you don't have to be on the team to work for the team. But who wants to work for someone that isn't going to treat them as part of the same team?

At this point, the Firefox team is pretty well entrenched and the product itself is doing fairly well (still can't parse Slash code for shit, but that's just a hurdle to be overcome soon). So for this particular project, a thorny attitude towards newbs is not going to hurt them very much.

However, the spirit of OSS (at least on the BSD side of the world) is one of openness and acceptance. Turning people away or accepting a new member only through invitation smacks of elitism. Unfortunately when you deal with human beings, you will inevitably end up dealing with some who think themselves elite and worthy of looking down upon others from the heights of their snoots.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (2, Interesting)

lachlan76 (770870) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526885)

Well, obviously you don't have to be on the team to work for the team. But who wants to work for someone that isn't going to treat them as part of the same team?

Well they're not gonna give every single person out there commit access to the repository, are they? If you want to be able to directly change a section of the code, you need to prove your abilities. Which is fair enough.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (5, Insightful)

Dancin_Santa (265275) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526906)

The problem is not the process. It is in the way they present the issue. Any project needs to have a central management team that takes patch submissions and vets them before it goes into the main source.

However, the way they present it is that if you want to contribute, well, tough. You gotta be part of the team, and this is an invitation-only club. So someone comes along and says, "Hey, I'd like to have feature X work. How can I contribute?" And the website says "Fuck off, you're not wanted here." So he says, "Well, screw it. It probably wasn't a good idea in the first place." And then the project loses out on what might be a good feature.

They say "Members only" and "Please help us" simultaneously. Mixed signals, to say the least.

If it requires an article of that length to be written clarifying what really ought to be a straightforward issue, then the people who presented the it are at fault for clouding the issue.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526937)

Well they're not gonna give every single person out there commit access to the repository, are they?
Yes, that is so the same as submitting a patch. So lay off the strawman already, you halfwit.

Their attitude (you did RTFA, right?) is the other extreme - "we are so 733t, don't even bother to apply, luz3r!" - and is equally wrong.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (2, Funny)

Enoch Root (57473) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526888)

They say loudly that they are only willing to accept developers to the project that they have vetted themselves, no one need apply. And with this attitude in front of them, they drive away people who want to help but are unsure of their abilities

Seems to me, if you're unsure of your abilities, you should start on a smaller project with less visibility than FireFox. If a certain 'elitist' attitude is needed to filter out the rotten apples (e.g. the Linux kernel moderation approach), then this might explain why FireFox comes across as a shining example of OSS development.

I would go so far as to say that if the spirit of OSS is total openness and acceptance, and FireFox's approach isn't in the spirit of OSS, then FireFox's success and brilliance is an argument that the OSS spirit isn't working well. Just contrast FireFox as it is now with Mozilla 1.0 or Netscape 6...

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (5, Insightful)

91degrees (207121) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526981)

Seems to me, if you're unsure of your abilities, you should start on a smaller project with less visibility than FireFox

There's no reason not to try. Your fixes will either work or they won't. If they don't, you've bitten off more than you can chew, so you abandon them. Wasted a bit of time, but you know your limits. If they do work then you've pushed yourself, improved yourself and proven to yourself that you're that good. And helped the project along.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527138)

>Just contrast FireFox as it is now with Mozilla 1.0 or Netscape 6...

FireFox is where it is now _because_ of Mozilla 1.0

that seems like a silly comparison - especially if you compare FireFox to Mozilla 1.8

Most of FireFox's work seems to be applying the Gnome approach to user friendlyness on Mozilla - Remove 90% of the functionality and options because options are "scary", and functionality is "Bloat", but then if you want to change anything that's not part of the official "Non Scary" configuration, then you have to resort to the completely non user friendly approach of editing name-value pairs.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (1)

fireman sam (662213) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527247)

"just contrast FireFox as it is now with Mozilla 1.0 or Netscape 6..."

The quality of the products is not a reflextion of the development process. I had a brief stint at developing Mozilla from M10 to 0.9.8 and to get a patch committed (even if you had commit access to CVS) required a bug to be filed, a reviewer to be nominated, the patch to then be reviewed. After that the patch would be "super reviewed" by another reviewer. After all that, if it was deemed worthy, you could commit it.

I and some others had done the nano-X port of mozilla. At one point it was going to go into the mozilla cvs, but because it was a big patch (~13000 lines) no one would review it so it never got in.

PS. if anyone is interested have a look at nxzilla I think that the last update was to get it to compile with Mozilla 1.0.
Best 6 weeks I had.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (3, Informative)

droolfool (235314) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526905)

(still can't parse Slash code for shit, but that's just a hurdle to be overcome soon)

Fixed already, just not present in Firefox 1.0

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (2, Insightful)

slobbargoat (726076) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526991)

afaik its a workaround, not a fix.

Other groups (4, Informative)

DavidNWelton (142216) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526921)

This is in some ways similar to how Apache Software Foundation projects work:

http://www.apache.org/foundation/how-it-works.html #meritocracy [apache.org]

I think it's a pretty sensible way of doing things.

Compare this with the rather more beaurocratic Debian procedure for adding new maintainers:

http://www.debian.org/devel/join/newmaint [debian.org]

All three are certainly different projects, that require different kinds of talent and abilities, so it's likely that what works for one may not work for the others, but I think it's instructive to compare and contrast.

As far as openness, the 'meritocracy' system works fairly well if those on the inside are inclined to add others. Nothing prevents J Random Hacker from making patches or writing code. Do that successfully for a time, and you will be invited to participate.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (4, Insightful)

the pickle (261584) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526929)

still can't parse Slash code for shit, but that's just a hurdle to be overcome soon

You do realise that's a problem* with the Gecko rendering engine, not Firefox, right?

*To pedants: yeah, it's really a problem with Slashdot's implementation of Slash code. But at this point, I think it would be easier to fix Gecko than to fix Slashdot.

p

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (2, Insightful)

0x461FAB0BD7D2 (812236) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526972)

I doubt it, although that is the logical assumption.
I use Mozilla 1.7.5 but I haven't had any problems with Slashdot. Ever.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (1, Redundant)

Doppleganger (66109) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527094)

Oddly enough, I've never had problems with Slashdot on Firefox. I'm still trying to figure out precisely what the bug is supposed to be.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (2, Insightful)

Dobeln (853794) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527112)

"Oddly enough, I've never had problems with Slashdot on Firefox. I'm still trying to figure out precisely what the bug is supposed to be." Dito. Anyone care to enlighten us so we can start getting annoyed by the bug(s)?

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (1)

canwaf (240401) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527175)

The main content column spills over into the first column, a reload usually fixes it. I've noticed this issue on other sites that are XHTML/CSS w3c standards compliant.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (1)

lachlan76 (770870) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527212)

The text gets pushed into the left sidebar, or off to the right, outside of the screen.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527236)

Are you using nightly builds?

The problem is fixed in them (and has been for ages).

It's only the "stable" versions that have problems.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (2, Informative)

magefile (776388) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527252)

I think it's partially dependent on how fast your machine reads and renders the code. I see it at work, but not at home.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527146)

Sometimes, the text for the articles is mis-aligned and ever so slightly is over the list on the left hand side.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (1)

BandwidthHog (257320) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527235)

It seems to manifest only on machines that can render fast enough; on a slower box the timing doesn't work out, so everything works out fine.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (5, Funny)

wild_berry (448019) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527113)

Because the meritocracy that runs Slashdot won't accept patches..?

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526934)

(still can't parse Slash code for shit, but that's just a hurdle to be overcome soon)

I'd rather see them stick to standards than implement hacks for every website's broken HTML.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526949)

...and, just as likely, you will get people who think they are the Deal, who in actuality can barely program themselves out of a for(;;) loop, and should get chances to learn how, or finally get labelled as stupidheads if they don't learn.

The sword cuts both ways. It's neither right, nor wrong. It just is. And it's human nature.

So your post really isn't "Score:2, Interesting", but simply: "Score: Whiney".

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (4, Interesting)

DingerX (847589) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526988)

Well Tex, code ain't big enough for the ten thousand of us.

Openness, huh?
I always thought open source meant the source was free to be used, modified, imnproved and adapted. It does not, to my recollection, mean that those maintaining a given heap o' code have to take "all comers", or even have to have a formal mechanism in place to consider adding to their number.
I don't know what kinds of projects y'all work on, but where I come from, when someone comes up asking to join a project, or asks for collaboration, in the name of "The community", "the open source ideal", or other high-falutin' sounds, it usually boils down to one of a series of options:
A) Can you give me lessons?
B) Can you spend time working on my project?
C) Can I boost my own social position by claiming to work for you guys?

If you have the luxury of an abundance of people who want to work on your free project, you pick the ones who are most capable of doing work with the least amount of management. Going through a list of submitted applications is not the most efficient way to do this. You find who's doing good work, and talk them into working for you.

If someone has a brilliant vision for OSS, that person is usually better served realizing that vision in a dedicate project. Giants on the shoulders of dwarves.

Re:They set themselves up in a Catch-22 (5, Informative)

John_Booty (149925) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527049)

They say loudly that they are only willing to accept developers to the project that they have vetted themselves, no one need apply. And with this attitude in front of them, they drive away people who want to help but are unsure of their abilities.

I don't think this is "elitist", I think it's practical. With every new developer on board, the task of managing the project grows. See: "The Mythical Man-Month" or any text ever written on the subject, ever.

It's a well-proven fact that adding too many developers to a project has negative effects on productivity due to the added overheads of communication, familiarization, duplication of effort, etc etc.

And it's not like the Firefox team is really shutting anybody out entirely- the source is open, after all. You're allowed to download the source and start hacking away. In fact, in a world where thousands of developers want to be part of Firefox, that might be one of the surest ways to get noticed...

Volunteering sucks (3, Insightful)

Penguinoflight (517245) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527163)

There's two basic reasons why volunteering sucks, and unfortunately, volunteering for firefox is just as bad as regular volunteering.

1. You don't get paid, that's why its called volunteering.

2. Nobody respects you. This is the worst problem, it's simple really. If an organization doesn't value your help, working for them will be much harder than if you were getting paid.

Case in point: Try to fix phone lines for a local nonprofit. I end up standing around for 30 minutes to talk to a decision maker, only to be passed by someone with no apparent contribution. If I was on the clock, they would have respected my time if not only to avoid high fees.

That's why open source is great! (3, Insightful)

gnovos (447128) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526873)

Sure, don't invite me... FighterFax, my own personal fork, will be ready on thursday. :)

Re:That's why open source is great! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526894)

And FoyerFucks, version 0.69oh - my porn optimized fork will be out later tonight.

Re:That's why open source is great! (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526917)

Haha. But seriously, THIS is what Open really means. Nobody is obliged to do anything. They don't have to give you write access to their source tree. They don't have to talk to you. You don't have to listen to what they say. If you want something done differently, go ahead and do it the way you want it done. Just because their tree is better known and may or may not contain things you worked on does not make their time a public good. This isn't childish or irresponsible, it's the basis of the strength and robustness of Open Source software.

Re:That's why open source is great! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527014)

natural selection baby!

Re:That's why open source is great! (4, Insightful)

SimGuy (611829) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527016)

The problem, of course, is that forkers often fork as an angry reaction to a rejection from the developer team without realizing what kind of commitment it is running a project. It gets worse if you try to parallel an existing project.

In order for a fork of Firefox to be successful, you'd have to gather a team of developers, and actually find your own means to decide who gets access and who doesn't, but you'd also have to merge all the changes going into Firefox's own tree at the same time as you accept lots of contributions from your fork community (assuming you get enough press to be receiving any).

I think a further complication is that sometimes with these forks, the mindset of being more open lets contributors get patches through with less quality control, leading to a product which fails to offer the same degree of stability and code quality as the original project.

Xorg seems to be a decent example of a fork team that got these problems reasonably ironed out. Perhaps they're a good place to turn for advise for people serious about forking a major project.

I'll go make my own fork (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527056)

Stupid Firefox developers..I'll go make my own fork, with hookers and gambling and casinos. In fact, forget about the fork!

Re:That's why open source is great! (5, Insightful)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527081)

oh come on.

I know what point you are making but all that ends up being is a pissing contest and nothing real will get done.

if a developer is such a prick that refuses to submit a bugfix or patch to one of the top people of a project that have that access then his attitude and code really needs to go elsewhere.

Come on, is writing a Open source app a community development effort or is it a "you will not give me god access??? fine I'll go and fork the project!"

90% of all forks die without anyone knowing they existed, look on sourceforge, for every app that exists there are at least 60 forks that either never made it past their initial CVS commit or NEVER even had a CVS commit.

There is a reason to fork, Xfree86 was a reason to fork. But just because someone will not be granted CVS commit access is certianly not a reason.

Also, what is wrong with putting your patches on your own pages??

I use kernel patches that are not part of the main kernel tree, hell Linus would not accept the pretty boot screen for the linux kernel for years so many of us used one of the several projects that had their own patches.

Look what happened, a superior way of making the boot screen not horibly-scary to 90% of the world was born and accepted into the kernel.

People that control a project, espically a HUGE project need to say NO automatically to everything first. Because for every talented and good patch submitted, there are 30-50 piles of crap, blatent trojan attempts, and a couple of outright wrong submissions sent.

I understand your point, and I agree with you. But most fporks are not for a real reason, that is why they die without a whimper except for the pissing contest on the origional mailing list.

Why would they need to 'grow up'? (4, Insightful)

Enoch Root (57473) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526874)

These anecdotes are funny, but what I wonder is... Are they different from any other development project?

Every development project I worked on, the developpers included some form of easter eggs or witty comments in the code. It's human nature to have fun, and it happens in OSS and at Microsoft.

I think perhaps the only differences are 1) FireFox code gets seen by the world, whereas non-OSS comments are hidden for the most part; and 2) Quality Control usually catches stuff like the 'cookie description' in time for public consumption.

Hey, it's great that FireFox was born in a fun environment, but I think it's just human nature to make 'work' as pleasant as possible. It's great in the case of FireFox that the 'community' gets to share in the fun.

Re:Why would they need to 'grow up'? (2, Insightful)

youngerpants (255314) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526987)

Erm, the reason they need to "grow up" is so that their software can be introduced and recognised in corporations.

Me "I really think we should roll out Firefox to all our desktops"
CIO "Why"
Me "Well its much more secure than IE, conforms with stanmdards and in the long run wil save us from the scourge for Malware"
CIO " Whats this thing about hemp cookies being delicious"
Me "You're right, I suppose everyone would be much more comfortable using IE as they are used to it and it doesnt have any silly easter eggs (any more)"

Re:Why would they need to 'grow up'? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527095)

Erm, the reason they need to "grow up" is so that their software can be introduced and recognised in corporations.
Why is this a laudible goal?

I've never understood this fascination with this "Linux on the desktop" sentiment. If people want to use Linux as a desktop machine, then great! If people want to develop software and distributions that facilitate this, also great! But why is it seen as some sort of failure if open source software is not "introduced and recognised in corporations"? And why does this fascination with being accepted have to overshadow everything else?

I just don't get it but then I never did understand why the Open Source movement splintered from the Free Software movement, so I guess my confusion stems from there.

These are serious questions by the way. I'd really be pleased if someone can explain it to me.

Re:Why would they need to 'grow up'? (1)

Dobeln (853794) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527126)

"Why is this a laudible goal?"

In order to increase market share, in order to make GPL software development more attractive, so that we can have more GPL goodness.

" just don't get it but then I never did understand why the Open Source movement splintered from the Free Software movement"

Because Open Source as a concept can be useful outside the Free Software paradigm. Thus, it has spread outside the free software paradigm. This in turn has to do with the fact that a large chunk of programmers enjoy getting a wage for their work.

Re:Why would they need to 'grow up'? (5, Interesting)

danheskett (178529) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527130)

The only time I've ever been embarrased professional is when I was making a pitch to a long-time consulting client about using some fairly standard FOSS packages in their previously pristine Windows and SunOS environment.

Presentation is going well. Price points get a big eyebrow raise. Lead-in time is great. Non-proprietary is great. All good things.

Question and answer period goes all to shit. Made the mistake of referencing "GNU/Linux". My bad. What does the G-N-U stand for? GNU is Not Unix. What's that now? Huh? Ohh.. I see. What's this other acronym? KDE? Is that like CDE, which we use now? Ohh yes, but much better. Sure, let's take a look. Client clicks around on the laptop for a few seconds.. boom boom boom.. hits a panel that reports "Not finished yet. I'm too lazy :(" or some such nonsense. Great. Even better.

What a disaster. I was mortified. He picked apart all kinds of the typical Linux stuff.

In the end he went to another consultant and stuck straight to Windows. It was very embarrasing.

The bottom line is that in the real world, no one cares about having the source available. The investment is very small. If Firefox dies, what, are they going to hire a programmer to keep it alive so they dont have to switch? Lets get real. Trying to pitch anything but a polished product is, well, just asking for a beating.

Re:Why would they need to 'grow up'? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527245)

The bottom line is that in the real world, no one cares about having the source available.

But still way way more than care about what "GNU" stands for. Did he ask what Linux stood for too? Does he do this a lot?

The great thing about open source (3, Interesting)

Ezza (413609) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526875)

is that ANYONE can contribute to a project.

Only if the developers think you're good enough of course.

Re:The great thing about open source (1)

vadim_t (324782) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526918)

Hey, nobody said they'd have to accept your contributions.

You're perfectly free to patch your own copy, start a fork if you wish, or distribute your patch separately. I'm not aware of any OSS project that states that they'll merge each and every patch they get.

Re:The great thing about open source (4, Insightful)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526923)

a project that would have stated that they accept _all_ contributions would end up as a wiki-fight rather quickly.

Re:The great thing about open source (1)

castrox (630511) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527079)

Giving up mod access.

How is this strange to you? At some point some form of quality control *must* be done in order to make sure that the codebase don't go to hell with bugs or crappy code.

The thing is that all that code reading/quality testing takes up a lot of time. So perhaps rather than just giving anyone commit access a few devs gets invited "per week" so to speak, devs which have shown that they don't develop memory leaks every day or inconcistent hard-to-find bugs.

It really makes sense to me that one would close off the developer base the more people that rely on the "product". In this case, Firefox is used by millions, therefore people "depend" on it and the code shouldn't be messed with by someone not proved sufficient.

Of course testing for sufficientness is as I wrote above a thing that takes a lot of time, so people in general might feel left out.

Grow up? (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526876)

And we're meant to beleive a person whose server can't stand up to a /. 4 seconds after being posted. I bet this guy uses IE.

Re:Grow up? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527106)

And we're meant to beleive a person whose server can't stand up to a /. 4 seconds after being posted. I bet this guy uses IE.

No, he uses the fully standards-compliant GPLed Wordpress [wordpress.org] . More likely than not it was MySQL that fell over anyway. Read the error message.

Clarifications (5, Insightful)

ggvaidya (747058) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526899)

A Firefox developer --> actually, Blake Ross [blakeross.com] (yes, we've heard of him [slashdot.org] before, and writer of the Firefox guide book [mozillastore.com] )

why Firefox will never grow up --> from the article, "Firefox is growing and maturing--there's no question about it. But as long as we're around, it'll never fully grow up. So sit back, relax, and await the delicious delicacies that The Ocho will have to offer."

Website has gone down, so not sure how inflamatory the "controversial ... developer recruitment philosophy" line is.

Re:Clarifications (1)

sepluv (641107) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527004)

Ben Goodger [wikipedia.org] co-founded Firefox (m/b, Phoenix, Firebird) with Dave Hyatt.

Devs do not care for enterprise features (4, Interesting)

puke76 (775195) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526900)

When Firefox developers won't fix important issues [mozilla.org] that would improve browser acceptance in areas like internet cafes, kiosks etc, you have to wonder. What company wants a browser that you can't lock down?

Re:Devs do not care for enterprise features (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526931)

can't get the link, what was it?

Re:Devs do not care for enterprise features (1)

reflx (760179) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526958)

Copy Link and Paste, my dear Watson.

Re:Devs do not care for enterprise features (2, Insightful)

WJMoore (830419) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526976)

It was a reference to a bug regarding the incorporation of code to allow a kiosk mode. The patch was rejected. However the patch was re-implemented as an extension. I can't see how this is an important bug that is being ignored as there are readily available extensions [mozdev.org] to perform this function.

Re:Devs do not care for enterprise features (4, Interesting)

sepluv (641107) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526975)

Well, although I disagree with the developers not accepting many patches, this is not one of them. Anything that most people do not need is supposed to be an extension in order to stop bloat--that's why Firefox is so much better than Mozilla; this falls into that category as only a select few machines run by an even more select few of (hopefully technically knowledgable) indivduals would need this.

The extension system is integrated into Firefox and designed to be used. The real problem with the Kiosk mode is that that extension looks like it hasn't been kept up-to-date/has ceased development.

In the future (maybe 1.1), I think the Firefox developers will probably include the most popular extensions in the Firefox installer to make it even easier to do additional stuff like this.

Is it the Devs who should worry about it? (5, Informative)

YITBOS (842292) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527018)

I understand your point, being that the developers should incorporate that into the original design, but there are more than one extensions that allow the program to be able to do this. I believe this is, in part, because they are trying to keep the basic/core of the brower small and minimized, and then allowing users to select, download, and install only the extra extensions and options that they want. Why include a dozen different options like different RSS readers, stock tickers, built-in weather conditions, GMail notifier, etc. which only a minority of people will use when it will just complicate things and make the download size larger.

Keeping the file size down will not only attract those who still use dial-up, but also those who use dial-up, in most cases, have slower computers who do not have the extra RAM to spare for the extra features they don't want.

The Extensions Mirror (at http://extensionsmirror.nl/ [extensionsmirror.nl] ) has over 400 extensions for Firefox 1.0 compared to the 184 that Mozilla Update hosts, as well as themes and also extensions for Thunderbird.

Every extension you could probably desire for Firefox are out there; you just need to know where to look.

With the (what seems to be) ease of creating, and the popularity of extensions for Firefox, is it really the developer's responsibility to create and implement all of the features and extras that are desired, or wouldn't it be more pertinent to have the main developers focusing on the core of the browser, its security, or other related aspects and leave the rest to the enthusiastic aspiring coders out there?

Re:Devs do not care for enterprise features (1)

slux (632202) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527147)

I'm using the Matchbox window manager [handhelds.org] with Firefox to keep it fullscreen. I feel doing the fullscreen stuff with the WM is where it belongs.

Now locking down is also very possible with just X configuration - just one mouse button equals no unnecessary context menus and unnecessary keyboard shortcuts (very few) can be removed with xmodmapping them to something that doesn't do anything. After that you can just remove the unnecessary GUI elements from Ffox. The only thing that can be changed currently on my thinclients (for browsing a library registry and online databases) is the order of the bookmarks toolbar. That one I guess I'd need an extension for. I'll look at it when the Mozilla development book finally arrives.

Re:Devs do not care for enterprise features (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527253)

Has anyone tried submitting an extension that lies to Mozilla.org about whether you were referred from Slashdot? That would be another great selling point for Firefox.

Article two, anon karma whoring (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11526909)

People sometimes ask why we work on Firefox for free. It gets hard to keep a straight face at "work."

Give me another project that touches the lives of millions of people worldwide and still has public codenames like "The Ocho" which get published in the media. ("The Ocho" is the name of the fictitious ESPN 8 station in Dodgeball; kudos to Ben for the flash of v1.5 naming brilliance). The best part of Firefox is that even as it's skyrocketed to the top, it's never really grown out of its humble roots as a skunkworks project that was by and large coordinated on caffeine highs at Denny's. It has, in short, never quite grown up.

Of course, it never quite dawned on us in the beginning that everything we were doing would someday be so scrutinized by the public eye. When I added "Cookies are delicious delicacies" as the tongue-in-cheek description of site cookies in our Options window, I did so because describing something so complicated in such a small space was quite frankly the last thing I wanted to worry about after rewriting the cookie manager. I didn't realize it would be archived for posterity in online encyclopedias, computer science lectures, privacy policies (for Virgin no less), magazine articles, developer documents, and even in print in an O'Reilly book called Google: The Missing Manual. I didn't realize I had singlehandedly created a cult legend that others would scramble to recreate as soon as we finally removed it right before shipping 1.0. And most of all, I never realized that one day it would inspire someone to give birth to hemp cookies. Because I assure you that had I realized any of this, I would have tried to actually create something funny. And maybe even signed my name.

This is, of course, but one case study in a project that has never taken itself seriously. What most people seemed to miss about Asa's original Firefox (then called Phoenix) roadmap was that the seemingly arbitrary milestone chart was actually a roadmap. (It does say "the trip" at top, y'know.) And if you superimposed it on top of a real map--say, around the West coast--you found that it made for a pretty clean trip from Mountain View, California to "Phoenix," Arizona. It just so happened that Netscape was based in Mountain View. It just so happened that we called it "Phoenix" because it was reborn from the ashes of a certain product. It just so happened that that product was...well, you get the picture.

Certain entrepreneurs have even tried to capitalize on Firefox's energetic demeanor. People bothered by constantly broken builds had one of two recourses depending on who broke it: violence if was me or complete public embarrassment if it was hyatt. For the young Mozilla contributor, MozillaZine offers the stylish Mozilla bib, and for his prostitute mother (or father), the thong.

Speaking of families, certain buttons began to crop up around the web urging people to download Firefox (or Firebird, as it was called then) as part of the effort to save Seth's kids. More recently, little Timmy and Jimmy Spitzer were spotted as donators to our New York Times Ad campaign. And yet, Seth claims he has no kids! Why, Seth? Why are you so ashamed?

It would be nice to claim that the silliness ends where the work begins. But it infects every part of the project, right down to our bug tracking database. Mixed among those little showstopper things like "Firefox crashes on startup" or "Firefox emailed my addressbook and attached my hard drive" are the real important issues, like Vending machine prices raised by $0.05 (as Sebastian astutely points out, that's actually not a regression but inflation), or the fact that our drag and drop code is British, or that (perhaps most famously) our core UI technology kills babies and should therefore be removed. Then there are the "oops" moments that plague every major software project: our "RSS" button looks like it says "ASS", our download manager seems to be flipping our users off, and naturally, our alternate stylesheet icon looks like the all-too-common soybean speared by a hair clip.

In fact, the lunacy infects the code itself. Every time Ben edits the infamous widget state manager--quite possibly the worst code of all time if you block out memories of whatever coughed up Netscape 6--he adds a line from Manos: The Hand of Fate--quite possibly the worst movie of all time if you block out memories of Dreamcatcher--to the bottom of the file. But another Firefox legend is on the cusp of dissolution: his overhaul of the Options code has obsoleted this file! Where are going to we find code so terrible that it can house the Manos collection? And is Ben really justified in cleaning up poor code if it means killing a legend in the process?

You can rest assured, however, that these are isolated incidents and don't point to any sort of crackdown effort. Firefox is growing and maturing--there's no question about it. But as long as we're around, it'll never fully grow up. So sit back, relax, and await the delicious delicacies that The Ocho will have to offer.

Re:Article two, anon karma whoring (1)

mattyrobinson69 (751521) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527067)

You talk about release code names, but what about debian potato? thats supposed to be a distro you'd put on your expensive servers

Re:Article two, anon karma whoring (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527082)

Not so informative, links missing, there are 47 on the original blog, use mirror instead.

Drag and Drop -- British -- eh? (1)

Burb (620144) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527091)

What's so bad about the Drag-And-Drop code being British? Tea stains?

What about plugins? (3, Interesting)

InterStellaArtois (808931) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526942)

Well, if you really want to work on Firefox but can't get a look in, there's always plugins. I know, it doesn't solve the issues here but it would be a start for a keen young developer who needs to build credibility.

Not sure if plugins are included in this apparently elitist policy - I can't RTFA because it's slashdotted naturally.

Re:What about plugins? (1)

sepluv (641107) | more than 9 years ago | (#11526985)

No, they aren't obviously. (You can also write patches.) Anyone can create an extension; although, if and when the Fx developers get round to including extensions in the Fx installer, there may be limits on who can do that; I don't know.

Re:What about plugins? (4, Insightful)

nmoog (701216) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527139)

Exactly... I thought "Yeah, that'd be great developing firefox." and to test out if it really was for me I decided to take the extension easy path. I wacked up the super unuseful Slashdot moderator extension [webeisteddfod.com] then realised that even something so trival took a shit load of time.

I gave up on that dream. But at least I didn't waste anyone's time checking my dodgy patches.

Open Source? (5, Interesting)

vcv (526771) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527022)

Firefox is open source, so anyone can contribute. And the open-source is fully of great talents, right?

Why then, after 5 (almost 6) years, is the outline property in CSS not supported? Why is there no one able to fully implement this? Yes, I know about -moz-outline, but it's -moz-outline because they don't trust their own code enough after 5 years.

https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=6647

Re:Open Source? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527140)

If it bugs you, then go fix it.

Re:Open Source? (4, Insightful)

G-funk (22712) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527166)

Bollocks to outline, why the fucking hell can't somebody implement inline-block? It's been supported in ie for years, and it'd make the lives of every developer who's trying to stay standards compliant much, much easier.

pet peeve (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527041)

My pet peeve is how the developers won't fix autocomplete so it does not remember credit card numbers.

It's bug 188285. Have a look if you're interested.

Re:pet peeve (3, Funny)

vally_the_poo (811216) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527206)

Hey man, it's not a bug, it's a feature !
Imagine how many times you have to enter your credit card number...
I for one, can never remind my cerdit card number so it's very comfort when firefox fills it for me, especially when I go to internet cafés where it may be dangerous to get out your card !

Not surprised by these California political games (3, Insightful)

sethstorm (512897) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527042)


Given that similar policies have gone [orkut.com] (hint: "trusted friends" is really an euphemism for something else related to where Orkut came from [stanford.edu] ) on in other places in that area of the States, why is this surprising? At least somebody accurately hits the nail on the head on this kind of issue - where else do you get such arrogance that results in good code being sacrificed for California style political games, where you win by excluding the most people while presenting the best facade to the public of what you do.
Sure, there is more than a shred of validity of checking code, but when you use politics instead of quality to determine what goes in, it's not a meritocracy anymore, it's not even about the code. At that point, things like the Xorg/XFree86 split and the various BSD splits happen. Not minor code forks, but major splits.

To preempt you nuts who think nothing can be forced, fine. You just mindlessly confuse theory and practice as being the same in any situation regardless of politics, especially if it deals with places too exclusionary for their own good.

Re:Not surprised by these California political gam (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527101)

If the Orkut thing annoys anyone here on Slashdot, reply to this message and I'll arrange to give you an invite.

Google mirror with BOTH articles (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527115)

here [64.233.183.104]

"explains why Firefox will never grow up" (2, Insightful)

syntap (242090) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527129)

If growing up means becoming bloated, taking over the operating system, and opening itself up to every h@x0r known to netdom then I hope Firefox stays young and naive.

The trouble with Firefox.. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11527158)

I can't be bothered to read all this pious waffle of the article past the first few sentences but I don't need to.

Firefox's biggest problem is it's attitude which is a hand-me-down from Mozilla. It's kind of well...puke enducing and silly and not neccessary. The article starts off full of vanity and nonsense like all of the FF blogs do.

It's largely thanks to the pious chip on the shoulder and lets kill M$ atmosphere that FF whips up that makes sure it is a browser I don't much use. Ok I am a Mac guy so IE vs FF doesn't mean fa to me, and FF is pretty crap on the Mac anyway but still I honestly think FF/Mozilla should just lay off the rhetoric and offer the goods if they want to but just shut up. And stop please stop trying to force it down people's throats. I can't speak for my Windows or Linux friends but FF on a Mac is an almost meaningless product and a poor 2nd browser.

I'm sure a lot of hard work goes into Mozilla and Firefox and all that stuff but whats happened over the last year or 2 that hard work and pride in one's work has turned into a ridiculous ego trip and vanity spree for the developers and that just undermines a lot of what they think they are trying to do.

Re:The trouble with Firefox.. (2, Funny)

dogfull (819023) | more than 9 years ago | (#11527246)

sure right, we all use firefox because we really hurt M$ if we do... or apple for that matter

note sarcasm

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