NCSA Mosaic was one of the first ever internet browsers and the first to incorporate many of the features we associate with the Internet today. However, fast-growing tech companies aimed to replace that with their own, updated browsers. One of those companies was Mozilla, whose name is a portmanteau of Mosaic and either killa or Godzilla. In either case, it alluded to the impending obsolescence of Mosaic as a result of Mozilla going online. As we all know, the current browser type for Mozilla is Firefox, but what most of us don't know or remember is that it used to be called Phoenix (under a shared guise of mythical creatures, one must presume). After a trademark dispute, they changed it to Firebird, but that didn't quite have a ring to it, so they once again switched it to Firefox. Now you know.
Adam Aleksic is a 221-month-old, 2800-ounce high school senior with disturbing interests in etymology, vexillology, geography, board games, limericks, and law. Adam will be studying linguistics at Harvard University in the fall.
The Etymology Nerd