Open-source browsing technology from Netscape has been given the thumbs up by a number of weighty industry brands including IBM, Intel, Red Hat and Sun Microsystems.
The firms have all agreed to develop technology using Netscape's enhanced core browser technology, Gecko.
Gecko includes software, such as operating systems, as well as hardware in the form of set-top boxes and Web browsing appliances. Netscape's next generation Netscape 6 browser will be powered by Gecko and , if the promises are true, will be considerably faster, lighter and more functional than its predecessors. It will come with greater compliance to Web standards and improved "Smart Browsing" capabilities.
A Beta version of the browser will be released by Netscape within 25 days.
This is a landmark release from Netscape because Gecko is the first technology released to utilise the contributions of the open source development team at Mozilla.org.
Martin Frid-Nielsen, vice president of engineering at NetObjects gave his endorsement of the new architecture: "We support mozilla and Gecko because we have found its open, modular, standards-based approach gives us the browsing engine we need to effectively integrate design with development."
Netscape's partnership with AOL means that Gecko technology will be used in a whole host of applications including AOL Anywhere, Winamp, ICQ, Spinner and Compuserve.