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Greasemonkey Hacks: Tips & Tools for Remixing the Web with Firefox 1st Edition

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ISBN-13: 978-0596101657
ISBN-10: 0596101651
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Editorial Reviews

Book Description

Foreword by Aaron Boodman, Creator and Lead Developer, Greasemonkey

About the Author

Mark Pilgrim is an accessibility architect in the IBM Emerging Technologies Group. He is the author of several technical books, including Dive Into Python (APress) and Dive Into Accessibility, a free online tutorial on web accessibility. He lives in North Carolina with his wife and newborn son, and spends his copious free time sunbathing, skydiving, and reading Immanuel Kant's Critique of Pure Reason.

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Product Details

  • Series: Hacks
  • Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (November 25, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596101651
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596101657
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,004,932 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Jase T. Wolfe on December 23, 2005
Format: Paperback
Greasemonkey (GM) is an extension (arguably one of the most useful) for the Firefox browser. GM is an agent that allows the dynamic alteration and manipulation of web pages via scripts which run after the page is loaded but before it is rendered to you. GM opens the Document Object Model (DOM) of other people's web pages up to client-side access, which gives you the power to add, remove and change the content of that web page to suit your tastes and needs - almost exactly if you had written the web page yourself. GM, however, is only the hosting engine. All the real work is performed by implementing JavaScript files, that you or someone else has written.

Greasemonkey Hacks is a great read and a valuable "ideas" asset, but only if you fit into the niche it is written for. As GM is nothing more than an interface host for dynamic scripting, not a lot other than an overview of the extension, where to get it, and a how to use its few dialogs can be written about. Indeed, it already has been covered before and is freely available on the extension's home page (Greasemonkey dot Mozdev dot Org). As GM makes the DOM available to custom JavaScripts, unless you only intend to look for and run other peoples scripts (which is quite doable as UserScripts dot Org makes hundreds of thousands of them readily available, some of which appear in this book), a working knowledge of the DOM and JavaScript is needed. The author does not spend much time covering what GM is, and very little time covering any JavaScripting or DOM objects; you are expected to already understand what you see. What this title does give you is hundreds of pages of ideas, accomplished by presenting recipe script after recipe script complete with discussions and explanations.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Duff HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 4, 2006
Format: Paperback
Bottom line... I'm hooked. I was vaguely aware of what Greasemonkey was, but I really hadn't taken the time to explore it. That time is now over. I had a chance to review a copy of Greasemonkey Hacks by Mark Pilgrim, and I don't think I'll look at web browsing the same again.

Contents: Getting Started; Linkmania!; Beautifying the Web; Web Forms; Developer Tools; Search; Web Mail; Accessibility; Taking Back the Browser; Syndication; Site Integration; Those Not Included in This Classification; Index

This is a typical O'Reilly Hacks title, where you have 100 tips and tricks on exploiting some technology or toy. In this volume, Mark Pilgrim shows how you can use the Greasemonkey extension for Firefox to completely change the way you interact with web pages. The first two tips show how to install Greasemonkey and how to install a Greasemonkey script that you either download or write yourself. From there, it's all over the board as far as what you can do with these script gems. Tired of dealing with URLs on a site that aren't clickable? Check out tip #13 (Turn Naked URLs into Hyperlinks). Want to have a web page refresh itself automatically every x minutes (even though they don't have a meta refresh tag)? Then go to tip #41 (Refresh Pages Automatically). And my favorite... Hate those web site registrations that force you to enter basic information every time just to see the content? Do you normally use BugMeNot to find an existing registration? Wish that all could be integrated and automated in your browser? Tip #84 - Bypass Annoying Site Registration. I can tell you that this one was the first Greasemonkey script I installed, and it's way cool...

This is really not a "how to code Greasemonkey scripts" book.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Scott R. Turner on November 23, 2005
Format: Paperback
Since its inception, the Web has been a one-way pipe from the information suppliers to the consumers: take what we offer and like it. Greasemonkey turns that paradigm on its ear by giving the user of the Web the power and the tools to change Web sites to suit his own needs.

But Greasemonkey requires programming in Javascript. That's within reach for most technically-savvy Web users, but easy for only a few. Platypus (platypus.mozdev.org) provides a graphical interface for creating Greasemonkey scripts, but if you want to create anything unique or deeply powerful, you'll have to tackle Javascript programming.

That's where this book comes in. With a hundred examples of different Greasemonkey scripts, all of them clearly explained by the author of "Dive into Python" and "Dive into Greasemonkey", this book provides the basic recipes for almost any sort of script you'd like to create. By cutting, pasting and recombining what you find in this book, you'll be able to shape any Web site to your own vision without spending years plumbing the esoteric depths of Javascript and the Firefox browser.

If you can't amaze yourself with Greasemonkey, don't blame this book. Blame your lack of imagination!

-- Scott Turner
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jake McKee on June 20, 2006
Format: Paperback
If you're looking for a book on how to actually get started with Greasemonkey *coding* this is a great book. Sure, there's a collection of basic intro info, but this is a how-to book for coders. That's not a bad thing, of course! And from a coding standpoint, it does a great job.
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