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Gartner Says it's a 2-Browser World

CmdrTaco posted more than 9 years ago | from the sunlight-on-the-horizon dept.

Netscape 409

prostoalex writes "In its advisory to the IT managers Gartner says that even though the factors that drive the current Firefox growth are not sustainable, IT departments better get used to a two-browser world. "Concerns about security currently favor Mozilla Foundation's Firefox, but the market tide can shift if security breaches result from increased usage of Firefox", says Gartner and ZDNet adds that "Microsoft must deliver an improved version of its browser in Longhorn if it is to "determine the outcome" of the browser war.""

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New & Improved (5, Insightful)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608653)

"Microsoft must deliver an improved version of its browser in Longhorn if it is to "determine the outcome" of the browser war.""

Foo.

Improved is such a generalization, and it will be interpreted and realized in that manner. Microsoft will undoubtably continue to bundle more crap into it, tie proprietary formats to it, ignore generally accepted practices of composition (delivering their own, which break pages on rival browsers, a la the Opera Bork-Bork-Bork fiasco), uselessly incorporate it into all their product lines (regarless if it makes any sense, i.e. XBox 3, all games played through a browser) and continue with the practice of patenting and copyrighting everything they can think of to fend off competition.

We've seen all this before.

"isn't that another tentacle around your throat?"
"yes, but it's an improved tentacle and i'm certain i feel better about it than the last one."

Re:New & Improved (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608706)

"isn't that another tentacle around your throat?"
"yes, but it's an improved tentacle and i'm certain i feel better about it than the last one."


Let me guess, this is some anime reference I'm not getting.

Re:New & Improved (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608891)

No, it's a biology you are not getting.

Certain sea preditors use tentacles to trap their pray. It's a creepy enough behavior that it has become a popular staple of monster movies.

Maybe you need to watch PBS more.

That, or go back to school and get a GED.

Re:New & Improved (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608987)

No, it's trolling that you are not getting.

"Anime" and "tentacle" taken together were supposed to remind you of... uh... I'm at work, so let's just say four letters long and starts with p...

Your comment shows that you obviously didn't get the joke. The GP was trying to start a long offtopic thread. Looks like he succeeded.

Re:New & Improved (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608930)

no, it was a metaphor.

Rejected eh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608767)

Well Microsoft probably had some reason to turn you away.

Re:New & Improved (0, Flamebait)

niksoft (855564) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608821)

Well, chances are that microsoft will incorporate IE into Explorer, as they did with FTP and such, and all windows users will be stuck with unremovable IE forever, either that or IE will define new standards that deal with their .net junk...

Re:New & Improved (1)

stupidfoo (836212) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608840)

uhmm...
They've already done this.

Where have you been?

Re:New & Improved (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608859)

Get used to it, son.

People have to make money once they leave their parent's basement.

Is using a alternative prototype-browser, Mozilla, that in tight affiliation with the world's most aggressive privacy-invader, Google, really better?

I think not. This is why I rather grant 1,700,00 per year for proven Microsoft©-software for our IT-department instead of using a immature and therefore insecure free product like Red Hat's Linux.

Re:New & Improved (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608929)

Really bad troll... You're pathetic.

Re:New & Improved (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608956)

Good trolls go to the trouble of attempting good grammar and spelling. You didn't.

Re:New & Improved (0)

KlomDark (6370) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608958)

Nice troll there! Well done by old-style standards. :)

Longhorn... (2, Informative)

Evil W1zard (832703) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608667)

Is that the same Longhorn that was supposed to have such high level requirements for operation that no current system can run it. I would guess that it is going to cost a fortune so it better have a better browser!

Re:Longhorn... (2, Funny)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608926)

Is that the same Longhorn that was supposed to have such high level requirements for operation that no current system can run it

Perhaps they're already testing it on cell processors... :P

Re:Longhorn... (1)

AviLazar (741826) | more than 9 years ago | (#11609002)

I ran longhorn beta on my P3 800 Mghtz, with 512 ram, scsi hard drive, scsi dvd rom so which longhorn are you talking about?

Both browsers? (4, Funny)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608673)

So which one is country and which is western?

Re:Both browsers? (1)

EnronHaliburton2004 (815366) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608953)

So which one is country and which is western?

Simple: Country is where you whine about your dead wife, Western is where you talk about how you shot your wife.

Johnny Cash - Delia's Gone

Delia, oh. Delia
Delia all my life
If I hadn't shot poor Delia
I'd have had her for my wife
Delia's gone, one more round
Delia's gone

I went up to Memphis
And I met Delia there
Found her in her parlor
And I tied to her chair
Delia's gone, one more round
Delia's gone

She was low and trifiling
And she was cold and mean
Kind of evil make me want to
Grab my sub machine
Delia's gone, one more round
Delia's gone

First time I shot her
I shot her in the side
Hard to watch her suffer
But with the second shot she died
Delia's gone, one more round
Delia's gone

But jailer, oh, jailer
Jailer, I can't sleep
'Cause all around my bedside
I hear the patter of Delia's feet
Delia's gone, one more round
Delia's gone

So if your woman's devlish
You can let her run
Or you can bring her down and do her
Like Delia got done
Delia's gone, one more round
Delia's gone

Are transfer caps killing the broadband party? (-1, Offtopic)

jez9999 (618189) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608676)

Slashdot rejected this Ask Slashdot submission, everyone I've talked to says it's an excellent talking point so screw them. Please discuss:

Recently I've been trying to find a good ADSL ISP for my mother to migrate to. Her broadband provider has gone downhill rather nastily, requiring all http requests to be forced through their proxy, and tech support is £1/minute. During recent chats with people, I've mostly been given the conclusion that having ISPs offering uncapped broadband connections is ultimately unsustainable and all will be capped or PAYG in the near future. This is rather depressing, and I'd like Slashdot's thoughts on the matter. What's wrong with averaging out bandwidth costs over all users of an ISP? It seems to work OK for uncapped ISPs at the moment, and people who use the Internet just for e-mail and www don't have a massive problem paying a bit extra - on the contrary, people who use their connections a lot would have big problems if they were expected to cough up 10x more each month. I mean, what's the point in having a 10Mbit/sec connection if you're capped to 1GB/month? You'd have some trouble even streaming decent quality video, let alone doing a plethora of things that would require a lot of transfer. What's the benefit - web pages loading a few seconds faster?

I'm told that this model is unviable, not because ISPs are unable to get uncontended bandwidth from themselves to the Internet, but because of BT's side of the connection (I'm in the UK). BT's network is apparently not sufficient to cope with lots of heavy users, or they are just plain greedy, so they are beginning to charge very high prices for bandwidth. Take a look at this image [zen.co.uk] , and bear in mind BT will be scrapping the 'Standard charging' option for ISPs soon.

Does this mean the best way to go is cable? They don't have the black-box infrastructure costs of BT to deal with as they run their own networks. What's the situation with uncapped ISPs in the US/Canada? Is there really a depressing future in sight where bandwidth (an abundant constantly reusable resource) is charged PAYG just like electricity (coming from scarce non-renewable resources, mainly) and other utilities?

Re:Are transfer caps killing the broadband party? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608720)

nildram.co.uk

Re:Are transfer caps killing the broadband party? (-1, Offtopic)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608758)

No, cable is not the best way to go. With cable, your bandwidth is shared with everybody else on your cable! If your neighbors are bandwith hogs, you're screwed! For example, one of my idiot neighbors keeps putting up a DHCP server... on the cable! Since it's closer, everybody boots through it instead of the ISP's DHCP server... and then can't use their network connection! Sorry, but I think you're much better off with a private connection to your ISP... even with bandwidth caps!

Re:Are transfer caps killing the broadband party? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608977)

You sure use a lot of exclamation marks! Perhaps you are Australian and really speak like that?! Have you considered tranqualisers?! Maybe you could put some energy into configuring your DHCP client to ignore DHCP offers from your neighbours MAC address!

Re:Are transfer caps killing the broadband party? (1, Flamebait)

Porn Whitelist (838671) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608973)

Reply, then on-topic post at bottom ...

You're part of the commonwealth ... so come to Kanuckistan. [tt]Ca-na-da

I'm on an unlimited plan, and I've done 400 Gigabytes (that's bytes, not bits - 3.2 terabits) of transfer a month, and my bill is STILL under $70/month, all taxes in.

And that's for 6.5 Mb/s up, 1 mb/s down.

And it's ALWAYS fast. The system can easily handle 42Mb/s, they've capped it at 6.5, so if you want to subscribe to their digital pvr service, etc., there's more than enough bandwidth.

Just don't use the phone line - the phone company here (Bell) owns the largest porn distributor in Canada (ExpressVu) and doesn't like competition, so if you want to search for "educational materials", ....

Now back on-topic:

Who gives a fuck what Gartner Group says? It's not a two-browser world. It's a "if I want I can make my own browser using readily-available components in a few days" world.

I could use java. Or I could start with firefox, or mozilla, or any other gecko-based browser. Hell, I could do it in Delphi.

If you really wanted, you could steal the #3 position from Opera by making a browser that specialized in sniffing out pr0n.

  1. Cost of making your own porn browser: $0.00
  2. Cost of distribution $0.00
  3. Being able to smile when you say "my browser went down on me": Priceless

the pancake ninjas are first!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608688)

the pancake ninjas are first!!

No surprise ... (5, Insightful)

chris09876 (643289) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608702)

I don't think this article said anything useful. Clearly MS has to offer at least something if they want to remain in the browser market. It's taking time, but Firefox is gaining more and more ground.

It's not a bad thing if Microsoft wants to innovate with their web browser - more competition is a good thing. It will make everyone's internet experience better. Having two competing browsers is definitely a better playing field than just one monopolistic browser.

Re:No surprise ... (3, Insightful)

Citizen of Earth (569446) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608811)

I don't think this article said anything useful.

I think it's an important message that a Microsoft kiss-ass is acknowledging the existence of a competitor.

GARTNER == RENTRAG

Re:No surprise ... (5, Insightful)

RealAlaskan (576404) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608813)

I don't think this article said anything useful.

It was a Gartner article. Have they ever said anything useful? Clueless articles for clueless dweebs who are looking for CYA material.

Re:No surprise ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608814)

If Firefox is bringing good competition to the browser arena, how can you say that IE is a "monopolistic browser"?

Way to contradict yourself.

Re:No surprise ... (1, Funny)

KlomDark (6370) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608900)

No, more like "Way to show the world you cannot read very well". Re-read it: "Having two competing browsers is definitely a better playing field than just one monopolistic browser."

Key concepts: Having two is better than ONE. Only if there was a single browser would it be monopolistic. Having TWO makes it so there's NOT a single monopolistic browser.

Wow, kneejerk response to a buzzword there? "Me see word 'monopolistic', me must post that there no such thing." Your plutocratic handlers are doing a good job! You immediately spout bullshit upon encountering a key word from your brainwashing/mental training.

Re:No surprise ... (1)

niksoft (855564) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608902)

The only thing that microsofts improvement is going to do is add more junk on top of the already existing one and redefine the html standards to something crazy once again...

Concise version of report (3, Informative)

bigtallmofo (695287) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608709)

The first 10% share of the browser market is easy. To get any more than that will be very difficult. Difficulty further enhanced by actions Microsoft may take.

No need to read article now.

Re:Concise version of report (5, Insightful)

chris_mahan (256577) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608832)

Nah, actually, the first 10% is the hardest. Once 10% of the people (and that's a 60 million people or so out of 600,000,000 computer users) know about a product, it becomes mainstream enough for most people to feel confortable trying it. most people are sheep and don't want to get in front where the wolves are. (nothing wrong with this strategy by the way)

Re:Concise version of report (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608842)

Seems like the opposite might also be true, though. The first 10% is hard because no one has heard of your product and so web developers don't code their pages to support it and IT people won't standardize on it. 10%, though, means a substantial presence in the hearts and minds of users, and once you get there, don't be surprised if things snowball.

Re:Concise version of report (2, Insightful)

Florian Weimer (88405) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608918)

The first 10% share of the browser market is easy. To get any more than that will be very difficult. Difficulty further enhanced by actions Microsoft may take.

Microsoft will not repeat the Netscape mistake. Mozilla and Firefox are good for them because they can claim they no longer have a monopoly (and giving away browsers for free is okay). After all, browsers are no threat to Microsoft's main revenue sources.

The first 10% (5, Insightful)

fm6 (162816) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608983)

I think that's backwards. The first 10% is next to impossible, because until you get some serious market share, nobody takes you seriously.

For all its advantages, Firefox growth is driven mainly by the way Microsoft keeps tripping over its own feet when responding to security issues. It's not so much that they were careless in designing the browser to begin with. What hurts them is that they can't seem to keep up with the problem. Patches take forever, and often introduce new problems. And many people can't even install the patches! IT people are looking at Firefox simply because they can't continue to live with Internet Explorer.

I just had a thought. I've long suspected that the IE codebase is a real mess, and may have already reached "critical mass", where every bug fix creates, on average, more than one new bug. If Firefox's challenge to IE's supremacy ever becomes an issue, MS will have to consider a scorched-earth strategy: abandon the IE codebase and build a new browser from scratch. A horribly expensive strategy, but then MS can afford it.

Re:Concise version of report (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11609000)

You are never get any where if you clearly state the obvious. The big money goes to obfuscating the obvious, and calling it analysis.

Seriously, if every time I see Gartner mentioned I didn't want to vomit it would be wonderful.

Determine the OUTCOME?! (4, Insightful)

the_skywise (189793) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608719)

What, so if Longhorn has a super cool browser the browser wars are "over" and MS won?

This is a "war" that isn't going away. Ever. (Well... until something supercedes browsers)

Re:Determine the OUTCOME?! (1)

BaseLineNL (822690) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608808)

What, so if Longhorn has a super cool browser the browser wars are "over" and MS won? Maybe the war isn't over, but MS certainly would have won the battle. Why should Joe Average - who uses Longhorn - switch to Firefox when he already has a 'super cool browser' right on his desktop?

Re:Determine the OUTCOME?! (1)

Val314 (219766) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608877)

well... they "won" the Browser War I with IE4/5 vs Netscape 4.x. that didnt stop FireFox from trying again.

>Why should Joe Average - who uses Longhorn - switch to Firefox when he already has a 'super cool browser' right on his desktop?

for the same reason why they switch now from IE6 to Firefox. because Firefox is better. if IE7 is better than Firefox, MS deserves to win the next round

Re:Determine the OUTCOME?! (2, Interesting)

Leroy_Brown242 (683141) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608898)

Why should Joe Average - who uses Longhorn - switch to Firefox when he already has a 'super cool browser' right on his desktop?

The only way I see people dumping IE on Longhorn, would be if they already used to and loved Firefox.

So, if Firefox is to combat IE on Longhorn, they will have to push and take as much of the marketplace as they can before Longhorn hits the market.

Then, the users, who are creatures of habit, will download Firefox the moment they get that long horn system on the INTARWEB.

But, thatd still be a lossy transition.

Re:Determine the OUTCOME?! (2, Insightful)

Asprin (545477) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608934)


Yeah, I thought that was interesting, too.

This isn't ever going to be "over" because even if Goodger and his band of merry maintainers get ticked off and give up, the code is still out there, and it's still open source! Anyone and everyone willing to comply with the license has the freedom to fork their own version and do their own thing with it.

In a very real sense, that's Microsoft's biggest obstacle here - the fact that there is no controlling entity to buy off/defeat/take over/etc, because open source projects don't stop until **everyone** decides it's not worth pursuing anymore.

It's (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608723)

It's a 2 browser world, but slashdot only puts the NETSCAPE icon, and the IT icon for this article.

2 browsers? (5, Insightful)

Entouchable (843858) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608730)

consider ways to manage browser coexistence because that is the most likely long-term outcome:

Maybe 2 browser engines world.. But with AOL Browser coming out (who has its own userbase already) And Netscape 8, and continued development on firefox, and IE, and continued development on opera, two browsers seems like a bit of a stretch, two major browsers even seems like a stretch in the not so distant future..

Re:2 browsers? (5, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608780)

Which, to me, is the perfect outcome. Even just two browsers isn't the optimal result of all of this. I think having four or five major browsers out there is going to encourage them all to stick to basic standards.

Re:2 browsers? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608798)

AOL is based on the IE core, and Netscape 8 is based on the Gekko engine (same as Firefox, Mozilla)...
Still only 2

Re:2 browsers? (1)

Entouchable (843858) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608885)

Hence the 2 browser engines comment.. However they are still independent browsers.

Re:2 browsers? (1)

VoidWraith (797276) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608909)

Which strikes me as odd, because AOL already bought Netscape. What about Opera, though? And then we've got the slightly less used but still existant broswers like Konqueror. I don't know if they're based on Gecko, maybe they are.

Re:2 browsers? (1)

beelsebob (529313) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608980)

If the mac mini does well, that will hopefully get into an even better situation and we'll have a 3 browser engine world - Safari (and WebCore that is essentially KHTML) too.

mod 3own (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608736)

hobby. It was all as poosible? How survive at all out of business its readers and declined in market mutated testicle of Baby take my All our times have includes where you Dicks produced I don't want to GNAA and support and coders rival distribution, both believed that for all practical Towels on the floor out of bed in the DOG THAT IT IS. IT Volatile world of

Re:mod 3own (0)

cybersaga (451046) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608773)

If I had mod points I would mod the parent funny.
It's almost as good as "All our base are belong to us".

Re:mod 3own (1)

bcmm (768152) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608835)

I want a copy of whatever program made that...

Bummer for Opera (1)

Lawrence_Bird (67278) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608739)

not that I use it but know that quite a few do. Wouldn't
the more sensible approach be to avoid all browser specific
hacks? You would think that would make every IT depts life
a heck of a lot easier.

Re:Bummer for Opera (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608886)

I suppose so.

On the other hand, gMail wouldn't let me in using Opera, even after I told it to lie about it's identity (identify as Mozilla or IE).

as the de facto sysadmin of my family... (5, Insightful)

spoonyfork (23307) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608750)

As the de facto sysadmin of my family it's a one browser world [getfirefox.com] (regardless of platform). There are only so many spyware/adware/malware removal sessions on Windows that I can do in my life.

Re:as the de facto sysadmin of my family... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608910)

Firefox has fewer problems with spyware/adware/malware for the same reason that there are fewer viruses, etc. on Macs or Linux. Not because they are vastly superior products with better security, but simply because the user base is not large enough to make it worthwhile to the people responsible for such things. Not that that's a bad thing (anything to reduce these problems for me personally is a good thing), but Microsoft gets WAY too much blame for this type of thing. It's easy to throw stones when you've got a product that has 5% or less market share. It would be a nightmare trying to secure any system that is used by 90% of the population and is therefore the biggest target of attack.

Bah, just a sound bite (2, Insightful)

Xpilot (117961) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608760)

If you want the hare-brained opinions of the analysts doing magic 8-ball predictions at Gartner you gotta buy [gartner.com] their document. Wonderful. Who listens go Gartner anyway? It's opinion is no better than Slasdot's. I bet if you dressed up the average trolling Slashdotter in a suit and have him work for Gartner selling comments, PHB's would still believe it because it came from a guy in a suit.

Gartner's next report: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608893)

I bet if you dressed up the average trolling Slashdotter in a suit and have him work for Gartner selling comments, PHB's would still believe it because it came from a guy in a suit.

PHB: I just read in the latest Gartner report that in Korea, only old people use Internet Explorer.

Johnson, get everyone in the office on Forefox now!

Good (1, Redundant)

at_18 (224304) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608761)

Competition in the browser market is always good. Firefox is gaining momentum because it's better than the main competitor (IE). When (and if) Microsoft will improve IE to a Firefox-like level, the Mozilla community will be forced to release an even better browser. And so on.

Not Longhorn (1, Insightful)

The Bungi (221687) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608762)

The "hardened" (as it were) version of IE that is currently shipping with XP SP2 is leagues ahead of the stock patched IE6. This is really what FF is going against right now.

In reality though, as long as people continue to open those "Here is teh document" emails written in bad engrish, clicking "OK" in the "WOULD U LIKE TO INSTALLA THIS SUPER-HELFUL SEARCHING ASSITANTE" ActiveX prompts because they just have to see this "cool" web page and installing crapware like seedy P2P apps, spyware is not going away any time soon. With FF's increased install base and XPI malware beginning to appear in some websites, it's only a matter of time until it's a two-browser and much spyware world anyway.

Exactly (-1, Troll)

ad0gg (594412) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608827)

When people say firefox has is lot more secure than IE, I laugh. Today I played around with firefox and found a huge hole. If some lowely web developer can find a big gaping hole in 1/2 hour, how many more undiscovered exploits are in mozilla?

Whitelist hole [slashdot.org]

Re:Exactly (1)

bstadil (7110) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608976)

If some lowely web developer can find a big gaping hole in 1/2 hour

Or just googled Firefox news where this story has been covered 1600 time

Friefox news [google.com]

Re:Exactly (1)

The Bungi (221687) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608986)

Not an actual exploit based on the reported vulnerability.

OK, everybody say how great Gartner is (-1, Troll)

winkydink (650484) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608763)

how they're such visionaries with keen insights, as opposed to what blathering, idiotic weenies they are whenever they say something good about Microsoft, or something else that runs contrary to /. opinions

The only good outcome of the 'Browser war'... (4, Interesting)

26199 (577806) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608770)

...is no outcome at all. I hope IE, Firefox, and all other browsers have a long lifetime ahead of them.

Any competition will make things better ... (4, Insightful)

malcomvetter (851474) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608777)


... but the question really is "Just how much better?" and "How long will it take for such improvements?"

Has anyone ever noticed that in Windows XP, a normal user can create/write new files/dirs to the root of C:\? It's things like this that will need to be corrected if MS really wants to meet their goals of maintaining a secure, stable OS solution. ActiveX controls need to be revisited. Default NTFS ACLs as well ...

Sure, there have been improvements. And for all of our sakes, it would be best not to rest on the laurels, but to continue the improvements.

Competition is good. Especially in this case. Granted, if I was forced to choose, I may not choose MS for the majority of software I use (if any at all), but I refuse to close the book on them (perhaps I'm just optmistic)-- I think they could someday arrive and live down their bad reputation.


Sociologists have proven it takes a minimum of 3 generations for social change. How long will it take for security to be cultured into MS?

As simpleminded as Gartner is... (4, Interesting)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608783)

there are so many PHBs, so-called "Security Engineers" and other FUD gobblers that it might just take Gartner proclaiming the existence of Firefox, before anyone in Corporate America listens.

Re:As simpleminded as Gartner is... (2, Informative)

serutan (259622) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608979)

So true. My old clueless IT director used to post Gartner group quotes outside his cube, next to his huge multicolor graphs of disk space usage, CPU time and other stats about our VAXCluster. The graphs were printed on a $14,000 large-format Tektronix printer, bought only for that purpose and used only by him. These are the guys who make decisions like, "From now on everybody in the company will use software X, because Garner Group says maintaining a heterogeneous platform isn't cost effective (85%)."

I would have no problem with two browsers (4, Interesting)

alan_dershowitz (586542) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608785)

if IE would follow the fricking W3C standards. It's retarded this debate still goes on simply because MS doesn't give a crap.

They could fix a few bugs too, it's getting old that you still have to jump through hoops to make PDFs open correctly in every version of IE from 4.0 to 6.

Re:I would have no problem with two browsers (1, Troll)

Trolling4Columbine (679367) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608880)

I thought the great thing about standards was that there are so many to choose from.

Microsoft chose to define and adhere to their own standard. In an OSS world, that would be perfectly acceptable.

Re:I would have no problem with two browsers (1)

EnronHaliburton2004 (815366) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608988)

They could fix a few bugs too, it's getting old that you still have to jump through hoops to make PDFs open correctly in every version of IE from 4.0 to 6.

Or how about something much simpler, like allowing me to print a standard-width webpage on a 8.5" x 11" sheet of paper without the right edge getting cut off. Seems like it should be pretty easy, and I can do it in Firefox ...

Redmond come with a good product? Not Likely.... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608788)

I don't think this is an issue. Lets face facts. IE is basiclly unchanged since oh... version 5... and MS wont ditch the ActiveX bull. So there will be no major spyware for Firefox. I look it it like this. Firefox is designed to hold its own with a secure base. The whitelist and the lack of Atice X...whos worrying? Anyho... I don't think you will see anything come out of MS other than FUD.

Product manager's wet dream (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608791)

As soon as I read Gartner says I was done.

I remember working for a software firm that used Gartner's projections in their justification for the development of projects. "It's going to be a billion dollar industry..."

Years later, the market still isn't a 10th of what Gartner projected.

I don't get it (5, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608795)

"OH NO! IT people, run for cover... Firefox might stick around for a while, but won't drive IE completely out of use, so you'll have to support 2 browsers!"

Who are these "gartner" people, how do they make money by stating the obvious, and how do I get in on that action?

IT people should have gotten used to a multi-browser (i.e. more than 2) world 10 years ago. And by "getting used to a multi-browser world," I mean, "welcoming the benefits of a heterogeneous software environment by writing standards compliant code, validating that code, and testing it against multiple browsers".

Gartner Says it's a 2-Browser World (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608802)

... now that it is fairly obvious to be likely.

Tell me, what do we need these consultants for? Do we have a pressing need to fill their pockets with cash?

"Determine the outcome?" (4, Insightful)

ThousandStars (556222) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608823)

Mozilla and its derivatives can't "lose" the next browser war per se, because they're open source and protected by the GPL. More people can use them or few can, but either way they're here to stay. Talk of "defeat" for a foe that isn't a commerical company, can't be bought and is transmitted freely strikes me as somewhat ridiculous.

War metaphors don't work. If anything, IE will have to coexist peacefully with Mozilla, for trying to fight it makes no more sense than a single man trying to fight a mountain by climbing it. That's not the world's most beautiful metaphor either, but it works much better than those related to battle.

Here's a question or two... (1)

NewbieV (568310) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608829)

What are the growth factors that are unsustainable?

Does that mean that Firefox will never take over IE's dominant share of the market? Would anyone really want to see that happen?

More importantly, what's to prevent Microsoft from releasing a new and improved IE as a service pack, instead of waiting for Longhorn, as a way to blunt the threat?

allegiance to standards (2, Insightful)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608830)

The way to survive, for both browser makers and users (and the IT departments that "love" them), is to stick to standards. GUI techniques will diverge, so help-desk paths through them will never be truly unified. But the actual use of data formats, network protocols, and even plugin APIs are most manageable when they interact according to the published rules, meeting explicit expectations of function and form. To take advantage of that consistency, browser makers can endear themselves to users and IT departments by fully documenting their compliance with those standards. Maybe even publish "use case" walkthrus of their apps, so everyone's on the same page.

Revealing (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608836)

Isn't it revealing that people instantly start to talk about a browser war once there is some kind of competition for a dominant MS product?

So we are heading for a world in which there are two competeing products and I've got news for all those analysts out there. That's normal in every other industry and normaly considered beneficial for consumers.

These so called analyst should finally start to realize, that an industry totaly dominated by one company is the unnormal situation, not the other way around.

Microsoft's unwinnable war (4, Interesting)

fajoli (181454) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608846)

Microsoft has for all intents and purposes conceded the non-Microsoft operating systems to the competition (Safari, Firefox, etc). Microsoft can't win a war they are not willing (able?) to fight outside of Windows.

And day by day (country by country), that space is getting bigger as countries adopt opensource or recognize the risk of supporting a US-based corporation exclusively. Will Firefox continue to make inroads into Windows? Most likely. Will it be necessary for competition to be restored? I don't believe so.

In the end Microsoft's own policy of a Windows-only world will limit their ability to fight the battle let alone win the war.

The Browser War? (1, Insightful)

hellfire (86129) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608850)

Didn't someone say years ago IE won the browser war? Now they say IE needs to improve to win the war? And why the hell must we call this a war and why are americans so damn obsessed with calling things wars? (disclaimer: I am a US american).

This is business not war. Microsoft has the top "selling" (for lack of a better word) product that everyone just uses. However, someone else is making inroads in this capitalistic society and is giving them competition. Hopefully Firefox, Safari, Mozilla, Opera and the like will give enough competition to break the monopoly and then all the browsers will improve with good healthy competition.

not sustainable (3, Funny)

mdmarkus (522132) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608870)

factors that drive the current Firefox growth are not sustainable

At its current rate, every elementary particle in the Universe will be using Firefox by 2010. Clearly, that's not sustainable.

IE will be improved Longhorn... (1)

bcmm (768152) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608879)

I'm guessing that it will be skinned. Like Windows Media Player. And it will be really slow, but no one will notice because they will have appallingly good hardware to run it on.

What war? (4, Insightful)

FunWithHeadlines (644929) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608881)

What browser war? How do you fight a war when the other side doesn't use your ammunition (profits)? How do you fight a war when the other side doesn't need to impress shareholders with market share data? How do you fight a war when the other side doesn't bother showing up on the battlefield, but takes large tracts of enemy territory anyway?

What browser war? Some of us have taken our guns and gone elsewhere.

oh no (2, Insightful)

suezz (804747) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608887)

I didn't read the article because it is from Gartner and to me they just don't hold any credibility with me. Gartner will say whatever you want them to say if the price is right. But why is it that when microsoft comes out with a new and improved browser (of course it is going to be new and improved) it will be the end of all the other browsers. I don't care how good their browser is I still will not use any of Microsoft's crap if it was the last os in the world - Puried

Corporate IT mindset... (5, Insightful)

GPLDAN (732269) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608912)

Highlander! There can be only one!

It's a very Gartner "quadrant" thing to say, to be so deterministic. It's as if Gartner can only see a world in which one company drives the web.

No mention of W3C or standards or the state of plugin specifications, or anything about frameworks for interoperability.

These three analysts are Ray Valdes, David Mitchell Smith and Whit Andrews. I question the assertion that the growth of Firefox is based on unsustainable market conditions? Like what? That IE is insecure? If IE becomes "secure" will that immediately revert to the IT paradigm these guys are familiar with, where one technology emerges and drives standards?

Could it POSSIBLY be that Gartner analysts just don't see a larger force at work, that when open source products compete on quality and stability and unify their distribution methods, they are INHERENTLY more desireable, even on closed operating systems, than proprietary browsers? Because the standards can't be wrested into corporate control and the IT industry is waking up to the benefits of open source?

This is why I prefer Burton to Gartner. Burton papers tend to see things more how I see them. I have no axe to grind, nor do I work for Burton. I just encourage you, as the reading IT professional or hobbyist, not to revere the Gartner name blindly.

I pulled some very old Gartner papers out the other day, and they were laughably wrong about web standards 5 years ago. I don't trust them anymore now.

Please mod this up, even though it shouldn't be... (0)

sethadam1 (530629) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608923)

Firefox is getting to be a force to be reckoned with, but for some reason, even the Slashdot editors, supposed OpenSource proponents, continue to lump it with Netscape in their topic pool.

How about a little legitimacy for Firefox/Mozilla with its own topic icon? It's the #2 browser in the world, something BILLIONS of people use everyday (a browser, not ff itself). How does "Apple" get a handful of topics, but Firefox, used by more people then Apple computers all together, get relegated to a 4 year old dead browser?

C'mon editors! How about giving Firefox some props?

Wake up to Non-techies (3, Insightful)

Ridgelift (228977) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608939)

Browser wars will heat up to the extent that Microsoft permits this to happen, intentionally or unintentionally. Microsoft is the major force that determines the outcome, despite other vendors' agendas for the near term. If it does not respond, then a critical threshold eventually will be breached in market share.

The fact that Gartner is saying this has more to do with business and the stock market than it does about technology.

Geeks pay attention to Torvalds and other techies about the technical merits. Suits pay attention to Wall Street and other business oracles about the financial merits.

Microsoft is more about business than it is about technology. I care about technology, they care about money. When you understand that, you learn to tune out 80% of the crap that's out there.

Deja Vu (1)

jedimasta (854265) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608940)

Didn't we collectively have this conversation about 6 years ago, Netscape being the Firefox of the 90s and IE being the IE of the 90's?

I'm a firefox man now, but being a dev, I need to look at all browsers and sadly, though there is an official standard, no one but IT professionals and computer geeks pay any attention to it. God knows we aint the majority folks.

Gartner (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608946)

Gartner, aside from the fact that he has the analytical abilities of a brain-dead version of Gates, and the fact that he sleeps with his mother, is a wonderful person.... Really!!!!!

There's another browser besides Firefox/Mozilla? (1)

eno2001 (527078) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608948)

Wow! I need to get out more. ;P

I love ignorant tech reporters. (1, Insightful)

Arctech (538041) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608959)

"Concerns about security currently favor Mozilla Foundation's Firefox, but the market tide can shift if security breaches result from increased usage of Firefox"
Oh yes, because severity of security breaches are directly linked to the amount of usage. That's why IIS has so many fewer exploits than Apache, because it's not the big player.
Oh wait, it doesn't.

Firefox, like any browser, will have exploits. The question is, are the exploits worthwhile? For IE, the answer is almost always yes, because IE is a web-ready app built into the shell with root permissions. Not so with Firefox. You won't see viruses and malware spreading through the Gecko engine. It won't happen, because FF is built upon a reasonable security model. Microsoft threw away IE's security model when it tried to use it to win an antitrust suit. It's not insecure because everyone uses it, it's because it was flawed to begin with.

Why just 2 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11608969)

Why do people insist on there being a war between two browsers? I'd hate to be stuck with only 2 options. Here are my most common browsers in order of use...

Safari
Firefox
Camino
IE
Opera

Competition is good? (5, Insightful)

nhavar (115351) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608981)

I'm confused. See I keep hearing that all these government guys get paid to promote and ensure that the there is plenty of competition in the market. Then I hear about 2 HUGE companies merging so that they can compete against the the only remaining competitor in the market. So now instead of 3 competing in the market it's just 2. And I hear the same government guys saying "Yeah, that's okay, we understand needing to compete, go right ahead".

Then we hear all these analysts talk about how competition drives innovation, competition is good, it keeps companies agile, blah blah blah.

Then we have groups like Gartner floating articles which in essence say Microsoft needs to win the "browser war" so that companies only have to deal with ONE browser. It's sounds an awful lot like winning the browser war means completely wiping out the competition instead of just holding a commanding lead. Why is it that there's a war anyway? I wish corporations would stop running campaigns against each other as if they were trying to channel G.W. Bush.

Why isn't Gartner promoting companies focusing on a standard vs. a product. While I understand their profit model is based of of referring people to specific products that they review and track shouldn't part of their advice be to not rely on a specific product because of the potential for competing products to take the lead. Isn't part of the analysis they do predicting what might come in the future and how to leverage current products and allow for flexibility when markets change.

Or are they really saying "There's no need or room for competition within the browser market. Just use IE if you can, until it becomes too unsafe. Firefox can't hold out forever, it will fail. Just keep waiting for Longhorn."

War without End (4, Interesting)

jjohn (2991) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608982)

Has any analyst considered that there can be no winner to the "browser war?" Good gravy, war is certainly an easy metaphor to understand but its applicability to emerging and evolving technologies is tenuous. Better to call the competition by browser makers for the hearts of consumers a Red Queen's race. Do species stop competing for resources? Only the "stable" ones (i.e. thost that have become extinct) do.

As for bracing for the horrors of a two-platform web world, that call is many years too late. Apple's Safari is likely to be the dark horse that IT folks will have to adapt to. I think Steve Jobs means to make a big play for the PC pie. The Mac mini is as reasonable desktop as any from Dell, Gateway or Newegg (at least for corporate use).

In a perfect world, it wouldn't matter one jot what web client software is used. Browsers ought to be a whole lot stupider than they are. Just follow the meticulously defined W3C specs and lets all stop caring about "owning the platform." It's the applications that are far more interesting and carefully contrieved browser inoperabilities only stall the inevitable demotion of the underlying operating system to something akin to a really bloated BIOS.

Two browser world? Lunacy...

Gartner lies (1)

Pan T. Hose (707794) | more than 9 years ago | (#11608991)

If Gartner says it's a 2-browser world then either Gartner lies or I am living in my own world. Or both. I mean there is a place for every browser. I regularly use Mozilla, Firefox and Galeon. I often use Lynx. I also use Dildo. I may have slightly different needs than most of people but come on, it cannot be that unusual.

Dillo! (2, Funny)

Pan T. Hose (707794) | more than 9 years ago | (#11609017)

It should be Dillo [dillo.org] ! Oh God, what a stupid typo... Please mod parent down.

Improved is relative (1)

GatesGhost (850912) | more than 9 years ago | (#11609004)

Whatever microsoft comes up with in longhorn, it will more than likely be superficial, ie (pun) interface changes, probably tabbed browsing, and some cute animated graphics (like a 3d home button that turns into a puppy or something). any security implemented will more than likely be broken and we'll face the same critical update crap as before.

MS doesnt care (2, Interesting)

beattie (594287) | more than 9 years ago | (#11609005)

Why would MS need to upgrade their browser? They just embed the engine in whatever apps they have that they want to use it and let FF take over as the most popular actual browser. What does MS have to gain by having the most popular browser besides the most attention when there are security flaws?

How about a update now! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11609008)

"Microsoft should deliver a new broswer in longhorn ..."

How about a new version now! Why should we have to wait?

The biggest mistake is this activeX crap. The only reason why I can think they came up with it was to allow windows updates, and office updates, MS should have thought of another way to solve this problem because it now allows others to keep finding flaws in it and misuse it. And now MS trys to solve the problem with a little band-aid. And now that that band-aid is not working they keep giving us more band-aids to cover the other ones.

Remeber back in 1996, when they kept releasing updates to internet explorer, version 3, 3.5, 4.0 and so on. What happened to that motivation?

late

Unbelievable (1)

drakethegreat (832715) | more than 9 years ago | (#11609016)

It seems like over the past few days attacks have begun on the Mozilla browser... I'm confused why these are happening. Cause the numbers slowed down on spreadfirefox.com? So now that gives people the right to attack Firefox's security and other things. It seems odd to me that people are already attacking Firefox when this stuff hasn't happened. I hate forcasters who predict negative things. What are they bringing this world? Why can't they just sit and see if Firefox has a spyware problem or see if it can't be distributed using word of mouth. You know before we had this great mediasphere, we had communication through physical interaction and thats how messages were passed. Do people truly believe we need to have tons of money and 200 TV ads just to get people to use something? Apparently this isn't working for George Foreman because people still don't buy his grill in large numbers.
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