January 2008


     Neo: There are only two possible explanations: either no one told me, or no one knows.

Once again, Neo was right. And that means, I was wrong. ChatZilla wasn’t born on Jan 3rd., 2004, as said in the ChatZilla family tree (chapter 1).

The real date is Sept. 6th, 1999, and archives are here to prove it. This is the date of the first check-in, and the date at which it became available to public. Two days before it was released, ChatZilla looked like that:

ChatZilla -Jsric on 1999-09-04

Six days later, it looked like that:

ChatZilla - Jsirc on 1999-09-12

You’ll notice that it already had a CSS motif to style the chat window … Awesome! More awesome screenshots are available at ChatZilla Home.

That is all.

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 Which means that if you’re using the cutting-edge Firefox and SeaMonkey releases, you can play “Spot the Gecko!”.

Here is the proof:

Gecko animation

Motifs authors can stick an animated PNG in their CSS, just as a normal static PNG.

Use Justin Dolske’s APNG Edit extension to create beautiful animations yourself!
(Requires Firefox 3.0b2 and higher)

Ok. This is the first article of the History section, where the ChatZilla family tree and genealogy will be studied.

Let’s take a look at a picture of this tree, first.

ChatZilla family tree (Chrome tree)

At the beginning were dinosaurs.

The one pictured at the top of the tree is called Mozilla (it does look like a Zilla, heh).

  • This branch of the family still has good relationships with ChatZilla, and is represented by the following members:

We do not know exactly how that happened nor who was the mother, but around 2004, Jan. 3rd, a man named R. Ginda gave birth to the first ChatZilla, which he – the Father- did not call “ChatZilla 1.000”,  but “ChatZilla 0.954”, because it (ChatZilla) was still small and unpolished.

Computers being a bit silly with commas and 1K or 2K numbers, ChatZilla was born to the World!, as 0.9.54. You can check how old ChatZilla currently is yourself.

We imagine that despite being in its infancy, ChatZilla was already awesome, and completely kewl, as it is now. Being a child prodigy, ChatZilla rapidly attracted a dense cloud of proud and talented Uncles, who devoted themselves to its development and sane building. The current list of these “godfather” uncles includes, but is not limited to, in alphabetical order:

  • Gijs, from the Netherlands (not to be confused with Neverland)
  • Silver, in the U.K. He also has stuff here. Silver is the master of Sugnim, who is the cutest bot on the ChatZilla IRC channel.
  • ssieb_*, in Canada. Don’t panic, Canada does exist.
  • tH, in Jamaïca Kingston upon Hull, U.K.

These Uncles, since then, make ChatZilla able to run on a variety of platforms (which in this article, we’ll call “branches” of the tree, even though sometimes, they are “trunks”. Someday, we’ll explain that. Let’s concentrate for now):

  • Mammals, mostly foxes: Mozilla Firefox, version 1.0 to 3.0. In that case, ChatZilla installs as an extension.
  • Brine Shrimps, particularly Artemia Salina: SeaMonkey, version 1.0 to 2.0. ChatZilla comes with it (but is not a shrimp itself, obviously).
  • Gregarious animals, coming in groups: Flock, version 0.4 to 1.0+. ChatZilla extends itself in these groups, too.

That’s where you have to work a little and ask, dear Reader, a question: is.there.only.ChatZilla?

Thank you for asking. The answer is yes, and in that case, there.is.only.XUL.runner. ChatZilla is smart enough to run on its own, or standalone, on XULrunner.

And now, as in all fairly tales… we see a bright future for ChatZilla. We’ve heard of plans, we’ve seen tests on birds (Songbird). So… stay tuned!

</To be continued>

That is all for now!