There has been random speculation about Google developiong a new browser and/or acquiring Firefox. It is true that Google has been in acquisition mode. They have acquired Urchin, Zipdash, Applied Semantics, Picasa, Blogger, and satellite imaging company Keyhole, so why not Firefox?
I have no inside information, but I have been following links today that strongly indicate that Google is damn serious about securing permanent control of the leading edge browser technology in Firefox.
Ben Goodger is the lead engineer for Mozilla Firefox. He announced this in January:
As of January 10, 2005, my source of income changed from The Mozilla Foundation to Google, Inc. of Mountain View, California. My role with Firefox and the Mozilla project will remain largely unchanged, I will continue doing much the same work as I have described above – with the new goal of successful 1.1, 1.5 and 2.0 releases. I remain devoted full-time to the advancement of Firefox, the Mozilla platform and web browsing in general.
He also announced this in January:
Welcome Darin! I just want to extend a big "Welcome!" to Darin Darin Fisher who joined me at Google this week. 2005 is going to rock!
Darin Fisher wrote this response on January 25, 2005:
Me and the big "G" Following on the heels of Ben’s annoucement yesterday, I thought I’d post that I have joined Google as well. Like Ben, I will still be very much involved with the Mozilla project and community 🙂 Posted by darin
Ben made another announcement on March 28, 2005:
I want to use this opportunity to welcome Brian Ryner to Google! Brian has been one of the most crucial elements to the success of Mozilla software over the past few years,… Great to have you on board!
Now, none of this has been confirmed by Google at the present time, but it’s an old adage that you follow the money to see who is behind something. In this case, following the talent leads me to think that Google will be making an announcement this year that formalizes the Google-Mozilla/Firefox relationship.
If you have not already seen the Flash movie Epic, you should take a few minutes and view the future history of media as conceived by Robin Sloan and Matt Thompson, with music by Aaron McLeran. In this movie Google and Amazon (GOOGLEZON ) create a brave new world of media in 2008.
This is one thought-provoking film. Every move Google makes brings this particular future closer.