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In about a year’s time, fans of Mozilla’s Firefox would have cause as Mozilla plan to make ground-breaking changes that would likely make the browser the best in terms of performance.

Mozilla Firefox project quantum
Mozilla Firefox

This they intend to do through a vehicle known as Project Quantum as outlined by David Bryant, Head of Platform Engineering at Mozilla in a blog post.

The details of how Project Quantum is going to make Firefox stand out is a bit complicated if you don’t know much about the inner workings of browsers. However I would attempt to break it down for you.

At the heart of Quantum are three initiatives that have being in existence for quite some time. They are known as Servo, Rust and Electrolysis. Project Quantum would integrate some features of all three seamlessly to give users of Firefox a better browsing experience.


Mozilla Firefox project quantum
Servo, an integral part of Project Quantum

In a basic form, Servo is a browser engine designed by Mozilla to run parallel with the main browser Firefox. Largely experimental, the engine is geared towards creating a digital space where the most important sub-tasks in browsers are monitored by experts.

The Servo community was created by Mozilla and is sponsored by them. Anybody can be part of the program if you meet certain criteria of course. In a way, you can call the parallel browser a sort of open source program available to developers.

Integrating the work of the community into Firefox is akin to Mozilla benefiting from creating and funding an open source program. Just like Google is benefiting from making Android an open source program.


Mozilla Firefox project quantum
Rust, an Intergral part of Project Quantum

Rust is a programing language used by the Servo community. Initially, it was created by Mozilla for use by only employees of Mozilla. So for a while, it was exclusive to only Mozilla staff.

The Rust program is suppose to be extremely fast with security as one of the top features.


When Mozilla announced the latest update to Firefox browser, they introduced the word Electrolysis into how browsers work.

Before now, I associated electrolysis with chemical reactions only. But according  to Mozilla, being able to use the architecture of a computer to effectively deliver better browsing experience is known as Electrolysis.

In other words, The Electrolysis feature in Firefox update would use the number of processors in your PC to make sure you never suffer unnecessary bumps when browsing.

For instance, because of Electrolysis an open page freezing on Firefox browser would not affect other pages assuming you have multiple taps open at the same time.

So a combination of the above three is what Project Quantum is all about. One important benefit of Quantum is that your Firefox browser engine would be able to recognize and prioritize open web pages. This is important because power management in the browser would become more efficient.

This could be a silent dig at Microsoft and the Edge browser. It would be recalled that Microsoft had blown hot and loudly recently that Edge browser is far better than other browsers in terms of power optimization when using the browser on laptops.

Mozilla Firefox project quantum
David Bryant, Head of Platform Engineering at Mozilla

Let’s leave the last word to David Bryant:

Quantum is an ambitious project, but users won’t have to wait long to start seeing improvements roll out. We’re going to ship major improvements next year, and we’ll iterate from there. A first version of our new engine will ship on Android, Windows, Mac, and Linux. Someday we hope to offer this new engine for iOS, too.”

Well, just thinking about these changes to Firefox, 12 months seem like a very long time to wait for me. But I guess I just have to be patient.


image credit: fossbytes.com; numerama.com; air.mozilla.org; truthrevolt.org