Technorati search engine for Firefox

If you use Firefox then you probably use the Google search box in the top left corner. If you want to add Technorati to the list of search engines in the drop-down box then download RatherBiased.com's beta Firefox Technorati search plugin.

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How to create Technorati tags

Each of my blog posts has a list of relevant Technorati tags that makes it easy for Technorati to categorise my posts, hopefully generating more readers of my blog. I read about Technorati's tagging system a while back, but didn't really want to handcode the HTML at the bottom of each post.

I set about searching the web to see if anyone else has the same issue and can across the Oddiophile blog. There is a post from January which provides a bookmarklet that does all the work for you.

You drag the bookmarklet link to your bookmark toolbar (that's the installation process!), then whenever you want to create some tags, you click the bookmarklet, type in the tags with a space between each one, click 'OK', then copy the resulting text and paste it into your blog post.

That's it, nicely formatted Technorati tags, without any of the work or possible typing errors!

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Foxylicious hack for del.icio.us experimental popups

After receiving some help from my mate Robert Baillie, I've finally managed to finish my 'hack' to Foxylicious (v0.4) to enable the experimental interface when you right-click and choose 'Add to del.icio.us'. This gives a slightly larger window than the default one but includes the recommended, popular, and your tag lists making it easier to categorise your bookmarks.

So why use this over the experimental bookmarklet provided by del.icio.us? For a start I find it much easier to right-click than to navigate to a bookmarklet up at the top of the screen. Another reason is that if you are using Windows (XP at least) then with certain tabbed browsing settings the popup window goes behind the current window (it doesn't do this under Debian). I also wanted to give hacking an extension a go, and this seemed an easy way to try it out.

I can't be bothered trying to create a full extension, and don't want to take credit for the excellent Foxylicious, so to use my hack you need to first install Foxylicious, browse to your Firefox profile directory, then browse to the Foxylicious extension folder (extensions -> {32537848-7D38-4ee2-B5A2-47562E69C59E} -> chrome) and replace the foxylicious.jar with this one.

Restart Firefox, then go to the Foxylicious config screen ('Tools' -> 'Foxylicious') and if everything has worked correctly there should be an option for 'Use Experimental Interface', tick that box, click 'OK' and the next time you right-click and choose 'Add to del.icio.us' it will use the experimental interface.

Oh just one more thing, any text that you have selected on the webpage will be entered into the 'extended' field in the popup.

Enjoy and let me know if you find it useful! I'm now going to pass this on to Dietrich Ayala, the author of Foxylicious...

UPDATE: I've moved some files around on my server, I've not changed any of the content of this post.

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HTTP headers of my Nokia 6310i

Dietrich Ayala (the author of Foxylicious - my favourite way to deal with del.icio.us links) has created an interesting service that collects & displays the HTTP headers from any browser that visits the mobiledump page.

It's primary use is so you can view the HTTP headers that were sent by your mobile device. I've just just pointed my Nokia 6310i at http://http://dietrich.ganx4.com/mobiledump/ and I've been added to the bottom of the list, my specific details are captured on the Nokia6310i1.0_4.80_ProfileMIDP1.0_ConfigurationCLDC1.0.txt page.

This is a simple service but what I really like is the fact that you can view all the other browsers (both web & mobile) that have hit that page so you can see the headers for handsets that you may not have access to. There are other lists available on the web of mobile user-agent strings but they don't include a full dump of all the headers. This information isn't normally available from the manufacturer either but if you haven't taken it into consideration when building your mobile service can really throw it off the rails.

Handset manufacturers still aren't really implementing common standards for a lot of things, and mobile web services is one of these areas. Hopefully we will see this service growing into a valuable resource, if the list was searchable via browser, manufacturer, or handset, that would be even better!

UPDATE: I've just created the TinyURL http://tinyurl.com/dj5c7 to save some keystrokes when entering the URL into your mobile.

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Better Bloglines via GreaseMonkey

I've been a bit quiet lately, partly due to a 2 week holiday to Florida, and partly because I've been a bit blog-lazy.

I'm still using del.icio.us, but haven't found any other tools to make my experience better. I did start hacking up Foxylicious to support the experimental interface and I'm almost there, just need to know the correct JavaScript function to grab the selected contents of the webpage - any helpers? So apart from finishing the Foxylicious hack and posting it here and back to the original author I suppose that's my del.icio.us hunt over.

I'm still using Bloglines as my RSS aggregator but I always struggled with the font size dictating not only the post entry's text size but also the size of my feed list.
Greasemonkey to the rescue! Greasemonkey is a Firefox extension that can control the rendering of the client-side DHTML so you can change pretty much any part of the page. You install Greasemonkey then add 'user scripts' of the DHTML.

Over on the Peer Pressure blog I found a Greasemonkey user script that squeezes the feed list sidebar. It made the text a little too small for my liking and moved a number of the buttons and other links so it wasn't the best solution. All I wanted was to make the text smaller, so I edited the script to do just that.

Here's my Bloglines Shrinker user script.

To use it, first install Greasemonkey then click on the link above to display the script. Click the 'Tools' menu in Firefox, then click 'Install User Script...', then click 'Ok'. Visit your Bloglines homepage and you should see the changes instantly!

Let me know if you use it, and what you think about it!

UPDATE: I've moved some files around on my server, I've not changed any of the content of this post.

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Firefox 1.0.4 - security update available

Firefox was updated on Wednesday after some JavaScript security holes were found. A new version (1.0.4) has been released so if you use Firefox I recommend that you upgrade to it ASAP.

I don't let Firefox upgrade itself as this leaves some old version information in the 'add/remove programs' list in Windows that you can't get rid of - I always completely uninstall the old version then put the new one on.

Don't worry, it doesn't delete your settings, bookmarks or extensions as these are stored in a different location from the application.

More information is available at the Mozilla News page.

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