Firefox’s billionth add-on download shows the power of extensible platforms

I’m a big fan of open and extensible platforms (ideally open-source extensible platforms) – with WordPress.org for blogging and Mozilla/Firefox for browsing being my two favourites.

So I was pleased today to read Mozilla’s announcement that they had crossed the one billion mark for add-on downloads since they started counting in 2005.  See chart below.

Note also that this graph and the headline 1 billion figure are understatements, probably significant understatements, as add-on downloads from sites other than Mozilla aren’t included in the total.

This milestone shows both the popularity and the power of the model.  What I like about it most is the whirlwind of creativity it unleashes.  The vast number and variety of Firefox add-ons is testament that.  This post from ReadWriteWeb shows this very clearly.

For the record my favourite Firefox add-ons are:

  • Scribefire for blogging – I use this every day and it keeps getting better and better
  • Alexa toolbar (and been planning to add Compete for sometime)
  • Delicious
  • Tumblr
  • TinyURL Creator