Q&A Session with the Creator of Firefox

Wednesday, April 26, 2006 - 17:30
TH 331
Blake Ross, Mozilla Corporation

Mozilla Firefox is a free, open source, cross-platform, graphical web browser developed by the Mozilla Corporation and hundreds of volunteers. The browser began as a fork of the Navigator component of the Mozilla Application Suite; Firefox has since become the foundation's main development focus, and has replaced the Mozilla Suite as their official main software release.

Before its 1.0 release, Firefox had already gained acclaim from numerous media outlets, including Forbes and the Wall Street Journal. With over 25 million downloads in the 99 days after the initial 1.0 release, Firefox became one of the most downloaded free and open source applications, especially among home users. Firefox has attracted attention as an alternative to other browsers such as Microsoft Internet Explorer. As of January 2006, estimates suggest that Firefox's usage share is around 10% of overall browser usage.


Blake Ross is best known for cofounding Firefox, an open-source web browser developed by thousands and downloaded by over 160 million people. (His grandfather takes credit for half of them.) He also cofounded the grassroots SpreadFirefox initiative, which propelled Firefox into Superbrand's list of top ten brands in the world and has since been emulated by dozens of companies as the new model for marketing software on a shoestring budget.

In 2005, Ross was featured on the cover of Wired and nominated for the magazine's top award, Renegade of the Year, opposite Jon Stewart and the cofounders of Google. He was also a part of Rolling Stone's 2005 hot list. Ross has appeared on ABC World News Tonight and dozens more television programs and publications worldwide to promote easier computing, including the highly acclaimed National Enquirer. His star may never rise so high again.

Ross was hired by Netscape at age 15 while attending high school in Miami, Florida. Now 20, he is currently on leave from the undergraduate program at Stanford University to work on a new project. When he's not working, Ross enjoys playing the piano, writing, film editing and sleeping through Mondays.