After nearly three months, I’m still using Mozilla‘s Firefox as my default browser. It’s just too good not to do so. Since I recently switched hosts, I decided to take a better look at my stats. It seems that somewhere around 5% of you agree with my decision – at least to the extent that you also use a Mozilla-based browser (though that is not necessarily Firefox).
It continues to surprise me that the number is so low. I don’t hold to any illusions – it’s quite likely that Firefox will never overtake Internet Explorer, and that’s okay. But for a much more stable platform and such a better experience, it’s really quite worthwhile, even if it doesn’t come pre-installed.
Inspired by David‘s FDSubscriber extension, and his comments about a similar funcitonality for Bloglines, I decided to see if I could do it. In a nutshell? It seems that I can. It took some doing, and there were a number of stumbling blocks along the way (which I’ll share in the future). But I finally managed to create the Bloglines Tooklit for Mozilla (download here).
This should probably be considered beta software. It shouldn’t break anything, but it might. If you’re nervous about that sort of thing, you might want to skip it. If you’re the adventurous type, you should be able to start the install process by simply clicking the link above. If it doesn’t start, try saving the file to disk, and then using the File->Open File option to open it, and it should do it then.
You’ll need to restart your browser for the Toolkit to be loaded. Once you do, you’ll see a small Bloglines logo in the lower-right hand corner. Right click it to view the preferences. You’ll be able to turn on the context menu, indicate how you’d like to open links and enable the Bloglines notifier. Even if you’re not sure how you’ll like them, try each option and experiment. You might find something you like, and you can always turn them off again later.
The context menu adds a number of options to the right-click menu when you’re viewing a web page. Try it out to see the features it will provide. The opening of links allows for you to open links in the current window, a new window or a new tab (in the background or the foreground). The notifier will check your account at an interval you specify for new items, so you can always keep up-to-date on your reading. Let me know how it works out for you.
Update #1: Lots of great feedback. A new version of the toolkit is in the works that will address some of the issues mentioned here. It should be available later today. The one area that I’m having difficulty is with Mac OS X, as I have nowhere to test it, not having access to an OS X machine. I’ll keep looking to see what I can figure out, but any suggestions are welcome.
Update #2: Version 0.9 of the extension is now available, and it addresses many of the issues brought up here in the comments.