[Go Faster] DevTools System Add-on

Bryan Clark bclark at mozilla.com
Sat Jan 7 17:48:27 UTC 2017

On Fri, Jan 6, 2017 at 3:23 PM, Daniel Veditz <dveditz at mozilla.com> wrote:

> On Fri, Jan 6, 2017 at 5:51 AM, Ben Hearsum <bhearsum at mozilla.com> wrote:
>> If we go this route I think it would be good to come up with a different
>> name for this class of a addon. We've been telling people that System
>> Addons are non-optional parts of Firefox for a long time, and it's going to
>> be confusing to change that.
> ​Do we really want DevTools to be an optional part of Firefox in concept?
> It's the power of "view-source" to the max and part of what makes the web
> so great. Sure, only used by a fraction of people, but it's latent in the
> product for everyone to discover.

Yep, DevTools being an optional install is exactly where we are heading.
Here are the bullet points for why:

* With less than 1% of users interacting with DevTools it statistically
doesn't make sense to ship that feature to every user (download size,
complexity, etc).
* Product driven competitors like Safari already do this, because its a
good idea from a product perspective.
* MS Edge recently ran a study
showing what we've long felt to be a problem, that more users are
mistakenly interacting with DevTools than intentionally.
* By having a "Developer Mode" we can more accurately identify and
communicate with developers instead of trying to guess based off usage of
the tools.

The tools will still be 1 preference / click away in a very similar manner
to what Safari and Edge have done.  We'll work to make sure discovering and
turning on this mode is as simple as possible.  Note that Edge still
captures the keyboard shortcuts so it can ask if you "Really wanted the
Developer Tools".

> Even if the "System" add-on is just the part that downloads the rest of it
> on demand it could still easily fall under the "system addon" moniker until
> we come up with something better.​
> -Dan Veditz
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