product-firefox.pngSure, we’d all like Mozilla Firefox to hang tough, but Jeff Nolan says here that Mozilla is facing a problem (see here too) typical to open source projects:

…formal software development organizations knows that the bulk of the problems you face are not technical in nature, they are problems of the human condition. Attracting qualified people, achieving above average productivity, and meeting project schedule expectations are not solved by the pixie dust of open source alone… they are solved through competent management of the project and appropriate compensation/reward for the team…

Hmm, this raises the question of whether there are any third parties out there that can help with at least some of these issues. Matt Mullenweg, who has developed an open source blog software, WordPress, recently told us he thinks arms-length companies like SpikeSource or SourceLabs that help integrate open source component software might do well if they can figure out a way to funnel money or contracts they get from interested big companies back to the developer community. As outsiders, we’re not entirely clear on what the problem is at the Mozilla-plex, so don’t know if there’s enough of a market along these lines to help Mozilla. We asked SpikeSource’s Kim Polese about this, and she responded that providing support and information exchange for open source projects is indeed “well aligned with our mission,” but declined to be specific about Mozilla.