Mozilla adds new paid tier for its developer network

Mozilla has launched a new paid subscription service to further support the development of its Mozilla Developer Network (MDN).

While developers already rely on MDN to find documentation and code samples for CSS, HTML and JavaScript, MDN Plus will add three new features in the form of Notifications, Collections and MDN Offline.

As technology is every changing, staying on top of the latest developments can be difficult especially for busy programmers. With notifications in MDN Plus, subscribers get informed on all of the latest developments such as documentation changes, the launch of new CSS features and more after following a page. 

MDN Plus' collections feature meanwhile allows you to pick MDN articles you want to save as well as pages you frequently visit so that you have them stored in one convenient place when you need them most.

Sometimes developers need to access MDN when they don't have a strong internet connection or are completely offline. MDN offline leverages a Progressive Web Application (PWA) to gives users access to MDN Web Docs even when they lack internet access so that they can keep working uninterrupted.

MDN Plus

MDN Plus originally came about after Mozilla surveyed over 60k MDN users between 2020 and 2021 to learn that many of them wanted a customized MDN experience.

Now Mozilla's new subscription service for developers is available in the US and Canada though the company plans to expand it to other countries including France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Austria, the Netherlands, Ireland, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Malaysia, New Zealand and Singapore in the coming months.

For developers interested in subscribing to MDN Plus, there are three plans to choose from including a supporter plan for those that want to spend a little extra to support the continued development of MDN.

The first plan is MDN core and it is intended for developers that want to test out a limited version of the service before purchasing a plan. Next up is MDN Plus 5 which offers unlimited access to notifications, collections, MDN offline and other upcoming features for $ 5 a month or $ 50 for the year. MDN Supporter 10 though is for MDN's loyal supporters that want everything under MDN Plus 5 along with early access to new features and a direct feedback channel to the MDN team. It's only slightly more expensive at $ 10 per month or $ 100 for the year. 

Mozilla is also offering a 20 percent discount for developers that subscribe to one of MDN Plus' annual subscription plans.

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1Password Developer Tools want to make it easier to set password guidance

The business password management company 1Password has launched a new set of features called Developer Tools in order to help developers better secure and share their secrets.

With Developer Tools, developers can securely generate, manage and access secrets within their development workflows beginning with Git. 1Password's new offering also helps simplify complex processes and improves security practices to ensure data is protected without slowing down the development pipeline. At the same time, Developer Tools provides developers with secure access to the secrets they need wherever they are and on any device they happen to be using.

Chief product officer and GM of emerging solutions at 1Password, Akshay Bhargava explained in a press release how Developer Tools can make security more convenient for developers, saying:

“Developers encounter a lot of complexity when building and deploying secure software, and it can often seem like security and convenience are irreconcilable. 1Password Developer Tools aims to make their lives easier by making complex security processes more convenient, and making doing the secure thing, the easy thing.”

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Managing secrets

According to 1Password's recent Hiding in Plain Sight report, a quarter of employees at IT and DevOps companies have secrets in ten or more different locations and have shared them with colleagues using email, Slack and other insecure channels. Over half (61%) of projects are also delayed due to poor secret management and one in three (36%) developers have shared secrets over insecure channels to increase their productivity.

In addition to protecting personal passwords and information, Developer Tools can enhance productivity by enabling quick generation of SSH keys, seamless access to data via a command line interface (CLI) using biometric authentication and secure secrets management in one app.

Once SSH keys have been generated with just a few clicks, 1Password for the browser will autofill public keys into popular sites including GitHub, GitLab, BitBucket and Digital Ocean. Then by using Developer Tools' built-in SSH agent, developers can push code to GitHub and authenticate other SSH workflows in a terminal by simply scanning their fingerprint.

Developers can also use the new set of features to store secrets in encrypted vaults as one of several default item types including API credential, AWS account, database, server or SSH key to help prevent breaches caused by leaked secrets.

Organizations and developers interested in storing their secrets using 1Password can check out the company's Developer Documentation portal for more information on Developer Tools.

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PS5 is already beating Xbox Series X when it comes to developer interest

The next-gen console war hasn't officially started yet but, when it comes to developer interest it seems the PS5 is already beating Xbox Series X – and the Nintendo Switch.

That's according to GDC's State of the Game Industry 2020 survey, which surveyed 4,000 game developers on a variety of industry topics ahead of GDC 2020 in March. And, of course, the next-gen consoles were top of the agenda.

When asked which platform they planned to launch their next project on, 23% of those surveyed said the PlayStation 5, while 17% said the Xbox Series X and 19% said the Nintendo Switch – suggesting the Switch is also currently more appealing to devs than Microsoft's next-gen console.

However, not even the PS5 could hold a candle to PC, which remains the most popular platform among game developers, with 52% saying they were developing their next project for PC.

When it comes to the platform devs are most intrigued by, the PS5 once again leads the pack when it comes to consoles, with 38%, but the Switch only just behind on 37%. Again, the Xbox Series X is seriously lagging behind, piquing the interest of just 25% of devs. 

The survey also revealed that 10% of developers are currently working on a game for the next-gen consoles.

Other interesting trends

Xbox Series X

While the survey seems to suggest that game developers are favoring the PS5 over Xbox Series X, there were some other interesting trends that emerged from the data. 

It seems there's a rising interest in VR, and the Oculus Quest headset specifically, while interest in game streaming services like Google Stadia is also growing. However, the number of devs making mobile games is decreasing. 

It also seems like we won't be dealing in next-gen exclusives anytime soon, as only 5% of developers are creating next-gen exclusive titles – with a third expecting their games to be cross-generation.

While these kinds of surveys aren't always a precise indicator of industry trends, these are the people making games right now, and their views on the industry landscape give us a pretty good idea of the general direction of travel. 

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