Thunderbird Product Notes v0.6

Dan Mosedale dmose at mozillamessaging.com
Wed Jul 14 19:46:49 UTC 2010


   A current version of this document can be found at 
<https://wiki.mozilla.org/User:Dmose/Tb_Product_Notes>.  Feel free to 
comment in this tb-planning thread or on the wiki comment page.


    Thunderbird Product Notes v0.6

As mentioned in previous discussions, a number of us believe that our 
vision for Thunderbird is likely to evolve significantly over the coming 
months as we iterate on add-ons and grow to understand our options in 
the market better. As such, none of this is set in stone. Version 0.6 is 
intended to be a baseline and a starting point for discussion that tries 
to codify what we already believe, and leaves offering a stronger vision 
to future iterations.


    Goals For This Document

1. Make it easier for everyone in the community to see where the 
Thunderbird product is going, how to align themselves with it, and 
thereby encounter fewer directional surprises over time.

2. Act as a reference/short-cut for decision-makers, lessening the need 
to constantly reason and discuss from first principles.


    Values (taken from the Mozilla Manifesto)

    * The Internet is a global public resource that must remain open and
      accessible.

    * Individuals must have the ability to shape their own experiences
      on the Internet.

    * The effectiveness of the Internet as a public resource depends
      upon interoperability (protocols, data formats, content),
      innovation and decentralized participation worldwide.

    * Commercial involvement in the development of the Internet brings
      many benefits; a balance between commercial goals and public
      benefit is critical.


    Goal

    * Maximize our impact in shaping the future of messaging on the
      Internet.


    Market

    * Thunderbird will focus on the individual user and Small Office /
      Home Office (SOHO) market segments.


    Product

    * The Thunderbird user-experience seeks to help users accomplish the
      important tasks suggested by conversations and messages (such as
      scheduling a meal or updating a to-do list) rather than simply
      displaying lists of these things.

    * Thunderbird will favor elegance over completeness.

    * Thunderbird will focus on conversations that occur over mainstream
      and emerging communication channels. These include email, web
      forums, social networks, and microblogging services.

    * Personal preferences and niche functionality will be accommodated
      by enabling an ecosystem of optional add-ons, rather than
      overloading the main UI with a large set of preferences.

    * We intend to explore a variety of models for publicizing and
      supporting add-ons depending on their purpose.

    * We intend to evolve and structure Thunderbird so that both the
      core project itself as well as developers working in the ecosystem
      around Thunderbird can be financially self-sustaining.

    * Helping people own, control, and protect their own conversations,
      messages, and data is a critically important feature of Thunderbird.


    Platform

    * Offering developers a platform to integrate their messages and
      conversations with the user experiences and data that matter to
      them (particularly, but not solely, on the web) will continue to
      be critically important to Thunderbird.

    * Traditional Gecko add-on mechanisms (eg XPCOM-based ones) will
      continue to be supported, but focus will gradually shift to
      Jetpack-based mechanisms over time.


    Participation

    * Mozilla strives to build and strengthen a healthy community of
      participation around Thunderbird, based on mutual respect,
      positive contribution, and recognition of differences in
      experience and interests.

    * https://wiki.mozilla.org/User:Dmose/Tb_Participation describes our
      participation model in more detail.


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