Key developer leaves Mozilla

Mike Shaver insists his departure has nothing to do with AOL's proposed merger with Time Warner

Prominent Mozilla developer and crusader Mike Shaver confirmed Wednesday that he is to leave AOL/Netscape's open-source browser project Mozilla at the end of the month for a new job.

Shaver released a statement on the Mozilla.org Web site putting to bed rumours about his imminent departure. "Rumours are always more frightening than the truth, so I'd like to set things straight," he wrote. "January 31, 2000 is my last day as an employee of AOL/Netscape, and it will also mark the end of my full-time involvement with Mozilla."

Shaver won't reveal any information about his new employer, but says that his new job won't stop him contributing to Mozilla. Shaver's email address will even remain shaver@mozilla.org.

Shaver does not say whether his leaving Netscape/AOL has anything to do with the company's recent mega-merger with Time Warner and its transformation into an all-powerful media titan. "It's very important to me that people don't misinterpret this as a vote of no-confidence in Mozilla or mozilla.org. I'm certain that Mozilla will be a resounding success," he wrote. "My time on the Mozilla team has been tremendously rewarding, and I will honestly miss my excellent co-workers -- within AOL/Netscape and beyond! -- very much."

Mozilla is dedicated to improving and speeding up the development of Netscape's Navigator browser by making the browser source code freely available, and allowing programmers from outside the company to modify the software. This "open source" model has most famously resulted in the Linux operating system.

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