July 08, 2012

Mozilla Deprecates ThunderBird

Mozilla is cutting development on ThunderBird.

And where's Chandler when you need it?

Seriously though, it's probably an inevitable move from Mozilla. Desktop email clients that look like Outlook are a legacy product. And Mozilla has to husband its scarce resources very carefully these days.

Though, actually, there are two bold and exciting moves that someone *could* make with email clients.

1) Scrap the desktop GUI and write your new UI in the browser with the standards of  HTML / CSS / Javascript (or CoffeeScript). I'm not saying that TB should move to being "webmail". Keep TB as an installed client on your local computer. But use the browser as its front-end.

Going forward, that would be cheaper to maintain, more fun, and make it easier to follow the slickness of things like GMail.

2)  Upgrade TB to be a more general communication client talking Twitter, Jabber and FB too.  Start to do what GMail is doing : integrate emails into the general stream of other media. Everyone wants a way to post things via multiple channels. If email clients don't evolve to talk these other protocols, some other messaging client will expand to swallow email. (As FB are threatening to at the moment.)
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