"mozilla mail" developer resources have waxed and waned over the years,
and the most recent announcement
that Mozilla are no longer supporting thunderbird development, reminded me that
the usage of Mozilla email clients has been the most constant technology
thread that I've used in my 20 year tech career to date.
Now I try not to get inappropriately attached to any technology,
though I've not noticed any email client significantly better to warrant a switch.
It's interesting to see the general move from local clients to hosted email like
gmail which currently has about 1 billion users (compared to thunderbird's
though personally I've found the control and flexibility of having all my mail locally, very useful.
It'll be interesting to see how messaging evolves, given the recent
increase in divergence rate from email to irc, slack, whatsapp, facebook, ...
Here is a recent summary
of innovation in the email space.
1995 - Netscape navigator 2 mail
My first experience with Netscape email was with the navigator 2 client,
which I switched to after having stability issues with Eudora.
1997 - Netscape communicator 4 mail
This was quite an improvement in functionality and interface.
1999 - Mozilla mail and newsgroups
I used this separated version (generally with the pinball theme)
for a few years after the open sourcing of netscape to Mozilla.
2005 - Thunderbird 1
The first thunderbird version I used, and I also stopped using news groups around this time
but transitioned to reading blog feeds from within thunderbird.
2010 - Thunderbird 3
This was the last major update really to thunderbird,
which I reviewed separately
at the time,
and had a new vertical layout.
2015 - Thunderbird 38
Not significantly different to warrant a screenshot.
It'll be interesting to see where the community takes it from here.