One of the biggest challenges facing the World Wide Web? "Vendor greed. People who want to lock in to closed software," says Molly Holzschlag. Which is one of the many reasons she's spent the past 10 years advocating for open standards for the Internet. "Anybody who creates a software product for the Web that is not usable and accessible by as many browsers as possible, by as many people as possible—we have failed the greater idea of the Internet."
Holzschlag is a member emerita with the Web Standards Project ("Once a WaSP, always a WaSP," she says) and the author of 35 books, and has served as a consultant for numerous companies, including Microsoft. She currently works for Opera Software as a Web evangelist in developer relations, making sure the growing company produces software that "transcends all operating systems and browsers." But the industry still has a long way to go, she says. "Are we seeing progress? Yes. But I don't think there will be a point in our lifetime when we will see stabilization. This is a young and disruptive technology. It's already changed our lives, our worlds, politics, communications. It will have even more profound impact on the way we live in the future."
And in order to help us achieve Web standards, Holzschlag has no plans of slowing down. "I know some people say, 'You must have life balance,'" she says. "I don't have that. This is my life. I'm on a mission."