I joined Mozilla about 5 months ago.
My manager, Stormy, warned me that getting up to speed at Mozilla would be more difficult than I expected, and of course, I didn’t really believe her. My manager at Microsoft told me the same thing on my first day of work there, and it wasn’t really true. Microsoft was just big, not hard to adjust to.
Mozilla is DIFFERENT.
When I interviewed with Mozilla, my impressions were the same as most people who are not participating Mozillians.
Mozilla makes FireFox and Thunderbird and is Open Source, does standards stuff, etc. It all sounded cool and I “thought” I “got it”, but I didn’t. In truth, I still don’t completely, but learning is fun.
During the interview process I was impressed with everyone’s passion about “The Mission”, though, even having read “The Mission Statement”, I still had no idea what it all meant. The passion, though, was clear to see.
My first day of work at Mozilla was day one of the organization’s yearly “all hands” gathering. That event lasted a week and I met literally hundreds of my new co-workers. I also came to begin to understand that “The Mission” had almost nothing to do with “products” and everything to do with helping to change the world by propelling the Open Internet.
People at Mozilla tend to be idealistic in that they believe they actually can change the world. After just spending a decade at Microsoft this seemed unrealistic to me. The funny thing is that in the short five months that I have been here at Mozilla, I’ve actually seen a number of examples where Mozilla IS changing the world !
I flew home after the ALl Hands Week and I expected that, on Monday, I would start my efforts helping people learn and use open web technologies.
Instead, by the end of that Monday, I had been hijacked to work with the Business Development Team for the new Mozilla Marketplace. It made sense, I was new – so I had time, and I do have a “technology in business” background as well as much experience consulting with organizations large and small about solving there specific problems, using specific technologies.
So, over the past five months I’ve talked with hundreds of great organizations, large and small. Organizations that are doing amazing and NEW things with the Web. I’ve attended events in the USA, England and Spain and, unexpectedly learned more than I ever expected about Mobile computing. (I was never really interested in Mobile prior to coming to Mozilla)
Now after five months – I’m getting back to “Technical Evangelism”. The Apps Business Development team has had a bit of time to catch it’s breath and start to distribute the “partner engineering” function and my hope is that this will let me detach from all the “consulting” and tech support that I’ve been going and get back to building and offering GUIDANCE.
So my plan is to continue to focus on HTML5 from an Applications perspective. You will be surprised at how much you think you can NOT do with HTML5 that you actually can do. I know I’m surprised every day.
So, how about some help ?
What questions / problems do you need solved or answered that fit in the following question/statement.
I’m building an Application using HTML 5 and I don’t think it’s possible to (fill in here).
Example: Example: Protect my source code.
I’m building an Application using HTML 5 – how do I (fill in here)?
Example: Include my Twitter Feed without a Server Proxy
I’ll post articles here on MisfitGeek.com, but I’ll also post them on Mozilla Hacks (http://hacks.mozilla.org/) you should read them on Hacks because you get articles from ALL the folks in MDN !