Fresh from selling his company to Sun Microsystems for $1 billion, MySQL co-founder Michael “Monty” Widenius is now investing some of his wealth in Web of Trust, a Firefox add-on that aims to use crowdsourcing to tell users whether websites are trustworthy. No details on how much he’s putting in.
Despite joining Sun after the acquisition of the open source database system he co-created in 1995, Widenius left the computer giant earlier this month, frustrated at the direction toward which Sun was taking his baby; he wanted MySQL to become even more open but claimed Sun was tightening its grip. Web Of Trust is much more communitarian – based in Helsinki, it invites members to rate and review sites (21 million so far) to keep users safe from online scams, identity theft, spyware, spam, viruses and unreliable shopping sites.
Since bailing from Sun, Widenius has started an investment unit called Open Ocean this month, founded his own company Monty Program AB and is developing a MySQL off-shoort called Maria. Widenius, in the release: “My years at MySQL have taught me the power of user-driven services.” Via ArcticStartup.