Does Mozilla make money and stay afloat? How can a Foundation which offers bunch of FOSS Software is able to survive? In this post i will not focus on how Mozilla foundation earn money but on Mozilla’s revenues the past 5 years [2006-2010].
To be truth i found a very interesting article on how does Mozilla earn money , so you can have a look at the article . In my opinion the main point of the article is that since 2005 Mozilla Foundation made contractual arrangements with meaningful companies (Google,Nokia etc) and this fact rose up Foundation revenues.
2006 : $66.8 million
2007 : $75 million
2008: $69 million
2009 : $104 million
2010: $123 million
So as we can see during the last 5 years the Mozilla Foundation did double its revenue. That cannot be luck but a matter of hard work and dedication.
According to Wikipedia definition :
“Mozilla is a term used in a number of ways in relation to the Mozilla project and the Mozilla Foundation, their defunct commercial predecessor Netscape Communications Corporation, and their related application software. Specifically, it is or was:
- The codename for the defunct Netscape Navigator software project
- The mascot of Netscape, a cartoon reptile inspired by Godzilla
- The name of the open-source software project that Netscape created to continue development of the Netscape Navigator code
- The name of the Mozilla Application Suite (later renamed SeaMonkey), the project’s first product
These and various other related uses of the term Mozilla are discussed below in the order when they were first used. ”
So talking about Mozilla and it’s features would fill many posts. I would like to focus on information and statistics as well.
A very useful tool to analyze and obtain information about FLOSS project is Ohloh.net. Furthermore as we know Mozilla offers a Having a look at Mozilla’s Firefox page we see the following (Development side of view actually) :
Programming Languages (listed by percentage) :
- C++ (39 %) — 2,497,113 lines of code
- C (19 %) — 1,221,004 lines of code
- HTML (9 %) — 602,488 lines of code
- XML (7 %) — 440,652 lines of code
Estimated Cost :
The Mozilla’s Firefox total lines are 6,361,286 lines and the Total Estimated Cost (based on COCOMO Model) is 105,267,239 $ . Furthermore the total number of contributors is 1700 approximately and has more than 10,000 users. Also i have to mention that Mozilla Firefox is the most famous FLOSS project in Ohloh’s web page
– Mozilla Thunderbird
Like above i analyse here Mozilla’s Thunderbird information provided by Ohloh.net. So let’s have a look :
Programming Languages (listed by percentage) :
- C++ (47 %) — 537,665 lines of code
- XML (12 %) — 135,792 lines of code
- Java (6 %) — 72,708 lines of code
- CSS (6 % ) — 64,520 lines of code
- C (5 %) — 53,403 lines of code
Estimated Cost :
The Mozilla’s Thunderbird total lines are 1,132,278 and the Total Estimated Cost (based on COCOMO Model) is 17,227,804 $ . These means the 16 % of Mozilla’s Firefox total lines of code and approximately 10 % of it’s Total Estimated Cost as well. Furthermore the total number of contributors is approximately 623 and has more than 3108 users, which means 36 % of Firefox’s contributors and 30 % of it’s users.
Mozilla Firefox project and Mozilla Thunderdbird project are strongly related between each other. Personally i do use both of them and i am very satisfied from the quality that they offer. Furthermore Kmail and Evolution are valiable projects as well but not knows as Mozilla Thunderbird. Between Mozilla Firefox and Mozilla Thunderbird is something in common and it’s called ” C++” . As shown above we can see that 39% and 47 % of the source code (of its project) is written in C++ and maybe this is able to explain the stability and flexibility that these kind of software offers to the user.
QA , quality assurance seems to be a very important part of a FLOSS project. It is not enough only to report bugs and “bad” issues , the question is how QA Team improves the software quality. So in each FLOSS project the QA team has to fill the following goals :
a) The product should be suitable for the intended purpose.
b) Mistakes should be eliminated.
Considering the goals above , Mozilla do have a strong QA. Let’s see:
Mozilla QA :
Mozilla’s QA is divided into teams focused on Mozilla product areas or technologies. My goal is to focus on the Community Contribution of each team.
The team focuses on testing current and upcoming releases of Firefox. Some of our responsibilities include qualifying builds prior to a maintenance or milestone release. Some of the responsibilities include:
- Verifying bugs
- Running basic functional tests and smoke tests – automated and manual
- Running our automated test suites on localized builds
- Running automated update tests across platforms, through all update paths, across localized builds
- Making sure web content is ready for consumption
As mentioned before i focus on the community contribution. Anyone can participate to the team , but they do exist several ways to do it , such as :
- File bugs
- Triage bugs (confirm existing bugs and assign them to the right buckets)
- Help test new features
- Write test cases
- Plan new features testing
- Help others who want to get involved.
Browser Technologies QA : The Browser Technologies Team mission is two-fold, they aim to improve the quality of Firefox and finely tune it for mobile devices as well as drive the testing efforts for all the Mozilla Labs projects, web services and web apps. As Mobile, Web Services, Labs, and Web Apps become more prominent in the Mozilla project, QA continues to strive to cover and test the projects forthcoming. Furthermore the Community Contribution part is similar to Desktop Firefox QA’s.
Web QA : Through a variety of tools and approaches, WebQA aims to ensure high quality web applications, of both external and internal applications and websites. The team’s structure differs from the other Teams. Likewise the Community , contributes in another way. The Community do participate in Testdays, when users are testing the claim of the bug and trying to reproduce it.
QA Automation Services : The Automation Services team is responsible for helping the QA teams on specific products excel at what they are doing using a number of tools. In this team there is no community , the users can just enjoy the team by installing the Frameworks , which are being used (Mozmill , Selenium).
QA Community : QA Community works to broaden our community outreach and build a legion of community testers that will continue to help improve the Firefox browsing experience for users all over the world. Although the goal of this team seems very interesting and usefull , untill now Community Contribution is not available.
From my point of view Mozilla do provide a high quality and efficient QA. Each team fill the goals and do participate in the whole project. An example of high quality assurance is the Mozilla Firefox , which i do use it the last 5 years. The reason is that provides the following issues :
b) Many ways to report a bug
c) Extensions and add-ons developed by the community and the teams
Finally it’s a truth that after the presentation during the class i did understood the real reasons why i still use Mozilla Firefox…