Mozilla is showing it has the naming skills of George Forman and using the same name for a second product. After years of Personas representing easy-to-use, lightweight themes that let you personalize the look of your Firefox, it’s now your name. Or, to be more accurate, your online identification. Mozilla is stepping away from how your browser represents you to you, and toward how your browser represents you to others. Confused? Exactly.
But that’s not the first time the browser industry has stumbled over its naming.
For years, the navigation area of your browser was known as the browser chrome. And then Google came along and made the Chrome browser, forever cursing us with the additional baggage of saying “by browser chrome, I don’t mean the Chrome browser.” It’s like when the artist Prince became “the artist formerly known as Prince” there’s just no easy way to say it.
You don’t become the leader in the market by underachieving, so Google took the extra non-essential step of naming its new operating system Chrome OS. If the Chrome OS ever takes off, we’ll enjoy a nice round of “Who’s on First” whenever the topic comes up.
With this setup, you won’t be surprised to learn that, last summer, when we launched our build your own browser theme wizard, BT:Engage, we weren’t the first BT Engage. British Telecom has its own Engage offering. You’ll be even less surprised to know that Google also has its Engage.
- Identity at Mozilla: Introducing Mozilla Persona (identity.mozilla.com)
- Mozilla unveils a new ‘Persona’ for its BrowserID easy login technology (thenextweb.com)