Shannaleigh Bed & Breakfast in Niagara on the Lake

Shannaleigh Bed & Breakfast in Niagara on the Lake is testing new blogging technologies to provide new ways of communicating with visitors as they plan their trip to the Niagara region.


Drupal Adventures

Flexinode Extension: multitext

New look for ticklespace

Lots of new changes. Switched from Wordpress to Drupal. WP is great but we have too many needs that can only be served by a CMS like Drupal.

AutoMarks 0.1 - Autocomplete on bookmarks

Announcing AutoMarks.

The Location bar currently uses data in your history to perform auto-complete of urls as you type them in. If you dont have much history, the autocomplete feature starves and provides you little or no results. This extension allows you to add your bookmarks so they are included in the Autocomplete search.

How to use:

In Firefox:

In the Bookmarks menu, select the Copy bookmarks to Autocomplete.
It will prompt you to confirm, then proceed with the transfer.

In Mozilla:

In the Tools menu, select the Copy bookmarks to Autocomplete.
It will prompt you to confirm, then proceed with the transfer.

Once your bookmarks are transferred, just use the location bar as usual.

Install URL: Install AutoMarks 0.1

Jul 2008 NOTE: AutoMarks is DEAD. Firefox 3.0 now does this out of the box.(We recommend you upgrade to Firefox 3.0)

Use Firefox, take control of your history!


Since the beginning, the browsers have had a somewhat neglected view of our past actions. Back in the early 90's most computers came with hard drives that were smaller than 5GB. As one surfed the net it was easy to quickly fill up the hard drive with 'garbage'.

So history became a tool for the browser. Its main purpose became to reduce bandwith needs. No simple way of investigating or storing your past visits was ever created in the browsers. The slogan was, if you wanted to keep something bookmark it. So now we have bookmarks that point to dead servers, moved pages, or updated sites forcing us all to find things again....assuming we actually remember why we saved it in the first place.

There have been many attempts to improve history. On the mac, a feature called Scrapbook in Internet Explorer Mac was very useful, but very limited as well. A really neat concept interface was done by Mac Warriors with a browser dubbed TrailBlazer. There have been some apps designed to aid with history management, offline browsing and cache viewers. These apps may improve things but the thought of running off to another app to look at the history created by the browser, I find plain stupid.

Slogger is a Firefox extension designed to keep an accurate history of your browsings in a clean organized way. Here is how I use it. I have on my toolbar the switch that activates the slogger recorder. When I hit a stream of pages that I know I may want to have in the future, I activate sloggler and continue surfing, all my pages are dated and stored. Index html and xml files are generated for future browsing/searching reference points. When I am done I turn slogger off and continue browsing.

Slogger has many features that take things to the next level. One other feature worth mentioning here is the profiles. Slogger profiles can be created as needed to keep your recordings organized (e.g. business, personal,research...)

In my setup, I have slogger recording to a directory on my apache server so I have access to recorded pages from all my computers at home and the office. I have not installed any search engine to the local site yet, because I haven't had the need to yet...but when I do decide, it will be easy.

For the windows users, Google's desktop search tool can become much more useful with the data recorded by slogger.

So there you have it, with Firefox, and slogger you too can take control of your history.

UPDATE: For those that want a more integrated solution to the browser, there is ScrapBook. ScrapBook works very much like Mac Internet Explorer's scrapbook. I found ScrapBook after I had done this review of slogger. Both extensions are great solutions, to the browser history problem. I use both extensions, Slogger and ScrapBook, on my machine. Do what makes sense for you.

Next extension: Express yourself... ;)

Suggestions for Firefox extensions to review

I have about 7-10 extensions that I like and am planning to review (3 are already written). After that is done I will gather all the content into a nice article on Firefox least that's the plan. Any suggestions?

Firefox, the browser that respects its users

...well sort of. After you install Firefox and SessionSaver, you will have a browser that respects you.

This extension alone was good enough to make me switch. It really is sad that I am actually writing this near the end 2004 when this should not even be an issue in the computers of today.

Do you know why we have the save option in the file menu of just about every application? The answer goes way back to the 1980's. In those days everything was done on floppy disks. No hard drives. You had the OS disk/Application disk, and Data disk.

So when you turned on the computer, you put in the OS disk, started your application, and when you wanted to save your data, you hit the save command which prompted you to insert your disk....after saving you sometimes had to put the Application disk back in the computer.

So you see the computers then had no ability to automatically save your data when it changed, the computer had to wait till you did the disk swap thing. So this legacy model has carried on and on and on into today's computers. You may ask what does this have to do with browsing the web?

You save little if anything at all when browsing. It may be true you rarely reach for the save menu option, but how do you capture all that you are doing? Are the countless hours spent googling, and reading and clicking not worth anything? How many times has your browser tanked taking with it all that history in the back and forward buttons of your surfing windows?

Enter SessionSaver, it transparently records and keeps your window states so if you quit, or crash, you can continue right where you were.

NOTE: The URL for SessionSaver above will not work with Firefox 1.0 :( Sorry get the copy at instead. It works for me just fine.

BTW: I am aware that there are other browsers that do this nifty trick, but I don't use them for one reason or another....usually it is because they are pay apps or have more problems with rendering and accessing webpages.

The next extension I recommend takes care of another part of the browsing problem : Storage...

Well so much for being spam free.

Well folks within 15 hours of operation of this blog we got our first blog spam. *sigh*.

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