that Mozilla released Firefox 1.0 to play… And for Internet Exploder, it was the day the music died.

Chrome was not a gleam in Google’s collective eye, and my favorite, Opera, was only available as a paid application.

So unless you’re a Microsoft fanboy, you have a lot to be thankful for today (even Microsoft fanboys should be thankful, Internet Exploder 8 is worlds better than Internet Exploder 6 – if we had been left with Internet Exploder 6, it might have been eventually called Internet Imploder, and life could be quite different!)

TechConnect has a few more details compiled –

Party at Mozilla’s people, or better yet, party everywhere as today is the global celebration of Firefox’s birthday. It was five year ago when the Foxxy One 1.0 made its debut and since then it was nothing but up, up, up for the open source browser. After five years the promising software has turned into more than an alternative to Internet Explorer and captured almost 25% of the web browser market.

Currently there are over 330 million people surfing the web using one of more than 70 localized versions of Firefox and have access to a catalog of over 7,000 add-ons.

“From your desktop to your mobile device, Mozilla is committed to building an open and participatory Internet,” said Sarah Doherty on the Mozilla blog. “We’ve come so far in the past five years and we’re incredibly excited about the next five.”

To see how people around the world are celebrating this day visit spreadfirefox.com. Happy birthday Firefox! Where’s our piece of the cake?

If you remember, it did not start out its life as Firefox, that came later. It was to have been called Firebird, which I personally liked much better.

There are undoubtedly more than a few users of the Mozilla integrated suite, called Seamonkey (again with the name – is there a law somewhere that I’ve missed stating that Open Source projects have to have silly names?).

Whether you use it or not, you owe a small debt of gratitude to Mozilla for helping do to Microsoft what Microsoft did to Netscape. (I’ll bet Marc Andreesen is celebrating today!)

Lift a piece of cake, a donut, a sweet roll, or a cupcake today, and say “Congrats Firefox, you’re getting to be a big boy now!”

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Opera, the fastest and most secure web browser