Firefox 2, Electric Boogaloo

Please note that all blog posts before 8 April 2007 were automatically imported from LiveJournal.  To see the comments and any LiveJournal-specific extras such as polls and user icons, please find the source posting at http://brianenigma.livejournal.com/2006/07/

Okay, so I am slowly trying to migrate myself to Firefox 2.0 on the Mac. I have been using it at work and figured it was about time to force myself to use it at home so that I can get a really good feel for how it works in comparison to Safari. Previously, I did the “30 second tryout” wherein I immediately declared that it sucks compared to Safari and left it at that. Now that it runs fast (and/or I have more memory) and it has built-in spellcheck (the lack of which was pretty much a dealbreaker with Firefox 1.5 vs. Safari), I’m willing to give it a try.

I realize that plenty of people have been using modern versions of Firefox longer than I. I ask the following questions with the hope that someone can help answer them.

1. Is there a way to easily “clone” (or better yet, synchronize) my extensions and/or Greasemonkey scripts between two machines? When I freshly install Firefox, it would be super-nice to automatically have my extensions there (Adblock, Flashblock, etc.) When I install an extension at home (or add an Adblock rule, even), it would be great to have that appear at work without having to think much about it.

2. Is there an extension that works with Firefox 2.0 that lets me define hotkeys for “next tab” and “previous tab?” Previously, I was using either Keyconfig or something similar that let me do this with 1.5. There is a great little extension called Nightly Tester Tools, which allows you to load “older” extensions into a “newer” Firefox version, which helped for some extensions, but not for this particular one. They probably changed an API or object model drastically enough in 2.0 that a simple version number bump isn’t sufficient.

3. Is there a good place to browse popular Greasemonkey scripts? I’ve seen userscripts.org, but it really only seems to be geared toward “I know what I’m looking for, let me search for it” as opposed to “I don’t yet know what I’m looking for, I just want to see what other people find useful.” I have a YouTube downloader and a MySpace custom theme killer, but wonder what other people find useful. (And no, I don’t need the “kill the LiveJournal navbar” thinger–contrary to popular opinion, I rather like that thing.)

4. What extensions and Greasemonkey scripts do YOU find useful? I’ve been using:

  • Adblock – blocks ads by pattern matching; lets you right-click images/iframes to add new patterns
  • BugMeNot – gives you throwaway names+passwords for “registration required” sites
  • Distrust – The same thing as Safari’s “privacy mode” – when enabled, sites don’t go into the history or cache
  • Flashblock – Displays a placeholder where Flash would be displayed on a page; clicking the placeholder loads the Flash (good for ads and/or annoying sites.)
  • Google Notebook – Lets you save text snippets and web pages in your Google notebook. Strangely, I’ve never used this beyond initially testing it out; I tend to use my own Wiki for the same purpose.
  • Greasemonkey – Allows page tweaking
  • JavaScript Options – Lets you alter JavaScript behavior. Specifically, I use it to prevent pages from opening non-resizable windows. That bugs the crap out of me because they can never get the size right for my display/window-trimmings.
  • Nightly Tester Tools – Lets you install extensions that are not necessarily for the version of Firefox you are using.
  • Stumbleupon – Lets you “channel surf” web pages. I’m about to delete this, as its usefulness is pretty low.
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