Wednesday, August 09, 2006

How Was "Firefox" Named?

From Wikipedia:

Mozilla Firefox is a free, open source, cross-platform, graphical web browser developed by the Mozilla Corporation and hundreds of volunteers. The project which became Firefox started as an experimental branch of the Mozilla Suite called m/b (or mozilla/browser). When sufficiently developed, binaries for public testing appeared in September 2002 under the name Phoenix.

The Phoenix name survived until April 14, 2003, when it changed because of trademark issues with the BIOS manufacturer, Phoenix Technologies (who produce a BIOS-based browser called Phoenix FirstWare Connect). The new name, Firebird, provoked mixed reactions, particularly since the free database software Firebird uses the same name. In late April, following an apparent name change to Firebird browser for a few hours, the Mozilla Foundation stated that the browser should always bear the name Mozilla Firebird in order to avoid confusion with the Firebird database server. However, continuing pressure from the FLOSS community forced another change, and on February 9, 2004, Mozilla Firebird became Mozilla Firefox (or Firefox for short).

The Mozilla Foundation chose the name "Firefox" for its similarity to "Firebird" but also for its uniqueness in the computing industry. To avoid any potential further name changes, the Mozilla Foundation began the process of registering Firefox as a trademark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office in December 2003. As "Firefox" already existed as a registered trademark in the United Kingdom, the Mozilla Foundation licensed the name from the trademark's owner.

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posted by Staff @ 12:12 PM