Whatever you call it1, it is finally here (yeah, this is coming a few days late. But if it wasn’t so high on my to-do list, this would come 2 weeks later). Congratulations to everyone who helped push this release. Mozilla Labs did a good job of outlining the features, though only briefly mentioned one of the most valuable (this is subject here) feature of the extension: easier webapp distribution.
Refractor makes use of the
link tag in web pages to identify webapps. The line itself is quite simple
<link href="gmail.webapp" rel="webapp" title="Google Mail">
Yeah, no </link> or />. That’s HTML for ya’!
Not to say that sharing webapps before was in any way difficult, but I think being happily notified is nicer than finding and downloading and running and installing. Especially if there is a lot to try.
There are still some things left to be done. I want to see
- Recommend addons/plugins with certain webapps (ie. google gears with google reader for offline support, flash for youtube)
- Choose website styles/themes
- World Domination
I would also like to see some things done to Prism :
- Greater interaction with the desktop. I want to double-click a odt and open it up in google docs. No excuses!
- Linux requirements says that hal and dbus are required. Maybe we can do something cool here with webapp.js?
- Allow people to change their preferences such as proxy and access things like password manager
This is a prototype, with plenty of bugs (I found one just doing this post), but we fix them as we get them.
Refractor, if I recall the story correctly, was coined by Mark Finkle as it reminded him of what happens when light hits a prism : it refracts. Well, it was certainly more creative than prism-ext, while being less obtuse then Abbe prism.
Update : Thanks Percy Cabello for pointing out a mistake
Hard to believe that spring is only a few weeks away!
I only dreamed of these kind of days as a kid.