Dino, redux

The Mozilla Developer Network is currently doing a public beta of a new design and information architecture that features, amongst other things, a new logo featuring an understated sillouette of the 'Dino' logo:

How do you get to see the rest of the design? Just log in with your Persona account under preferences check off the 'Beta User' option.

Many people in the project are already aware of this, but the dino was orginally created by world-renowned street artist Shephard Fairey in 1998 and was used in all of the original Mozilla.org branding:

Aside: if you want more details, I refer you to an old post by Jay Patel on, of all things, the previous re-branding of the original MDC site over to MDN.

It is also well known within the project that for a while some Moco leadership were not fond of the dino. I am instead a huge fan - it's subversive, deeply non-cuddly, with a nod to the Soviet-era 'Socialist Realist' style of art that I think is one of the great legacies of 20th Century comnunist regimes (it's certainly more compelling than their automobile design). While Firefox branding is perfect for the reach of a top-3 web browser and top-10 worldwide brand, I think the dino is the branding that resonates with open web hackers everywhere.

My favourite story around the 'hack' / dino branding is from earlier this year at the excellent TXJS conference in Austin. My co-worker Anton had printed off a stack of 'hack mozilla' stickersout of his own pocket. TXJS had a huge table for stickers and other swag in the front of the theatre, and every so often Anton would put another stack of 'Hack Mozilla' stickers out. People snatched them up like rare hot appetizers in a room otherwise filled with bland cheese & stale crackers.

What's the lesson? For developers, the dino works. The dino rocks. In my opinion it's an iconic piece of art created for a world-changing project by an essential and amazing artist. We'd be crazy not to use it. :)

Jeff Griffiths


Jeff Griffiths

Open Web hacker and Product Manager at Mozilla.