Sunday, August 19, 2007

Google Reader Helper for Firefox

Google Reader is one of the most popular web services and I personally use it everyday. One of the features that I miss using a RSS reader is the ability to view comments. In this post I would share a simple hack to help with this issue and to more importantly serve as a proof-of-concept for possibilities around web application extensions. It is written on a framework called Chickenfoot for Firefox that I recently stumbled upon.

What is Chickenfoot?

Chickenfoot for Firefox is itself a Firefox extension that puts programming environment in the browser's sidebar that allows you to write scripts to manipulate the web pages. Chickenfoot is a superset of JavaScript and puts the user in control of writing quick extensions to web pages. There is a detailed quick start tutorial of Chickenfoot here and the extension can be installed from here.

Google Reader Hack

While reading a post in Google Reader there will be only one expanded view of the post which lives under the <div> with id='current-entry'. This hack leverages this to identify the post that user is currently reading and loads that page in another tab automatically. If you're interested in quickly checking/leaving a comment for the post, then you can switch to the other tab and do so immediately without having to click and wait for it to load.

Once you have installed Chickenfoot, download the script here and open Google Reader on Firefox and start the script. If you're familiar with JavaScript then it should be self-explanatory.


Chickenfoot programming paradigm could be used to enhance web experience for user's convenience. Also the intersection of Chickenfoot with concepts like Programming Collective Intelligence will fuel greater innovation by allowing user to be more in control of the experience.


Chickenfoot For Firefox

Chickenfoot Blog

Google Reader Helper Script

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1 comment:

Nokomis said...

Good for people to know.

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