Revising the 2010 “mobile” goal

December 30th, 2008

To my surprise, at the last discussion of 2010 goals the most active topic was the goal for “mobile.” Here’s a brief summary. I’ll put the actual revised goal in the next post.

Jonas looked at item 2 — “The web becomes the primary ‘SDK’ for applications rather than product specific proprietary SDKs,” and said, “Isn’t that our goal on the desktop as well, not just for mobile?” This is so obviously correct that I’ve moved this item to a bullet point of the general goal: “Make openness, participation and distributed decision-making more common experiences in Internet life.” This also has the advantage of giving us a core technical element, central to what many of us work on every day, in this rather abstract general goal. It’s a truly Mozilla-centric way of advancing the general goal. There’s a piece of this specific to the mobile experience in point 2 of the revised mobile goal.

Jono noted he’d like to see something along the lines of making the web experience on mobile devices fun and exciting, rather than the tortured experience it is today. Again, that seems pretty fundamental and worth capturing explicitly.

We had a long discussion about innovation, fragmentation, mobile devices and the desktop. My response has been to simplify, and try and state the high level  goals, and work out the interactions and complexities as we go along. So I’ve reduced the previous point: “accelerate innovation by reducing the fragmented operating system / carrier / handset problems that developers face today” to “accelerate innovation from multiple sources.” To do this we probably need to reduce fragmentation. We may need to be successful at making the web the development platform. But whatever it is that needs to be done, the goal is  to increase the innovative and generative potential.

We also discussed the question of how to make the web accessible / available to the billions of people who don’t have access today. We haven’t found an approach to this where we have a sense we can make a significant difference so there’s no specific goal here.

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