Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Intranet Feed Reader - Firefox Add On

I just ported Michal Bali's iGoogle gadget: Intranet Feed Reader. The add on can be found here. Again, log in is required for download since it is still in sandbox.

The add on adds capabilities to read intranet feeds into your Firefox's sidebar:


More details can be found at this Michal's blog post:
http://blog.decaresystems.ie/index.php/2008/05/20/google-gadget-intranet-feed-reader/

I will just shortly quote the conclusion of the article:

The intranet feed reader gadget can be used as part of a developer’s dashboard. It can display any intranet feed. Most useful might be information necessary for day-to-day work (e.g. current assigned issues in the bug tracking system, changed resources in company’s wiki or version control system).
Here is in short how to setup and use it:
After installation there will be new menu item added to the Firefox's Tools menu - Internet Feed Reader. It has sub menu items Properties and Show Panel, intuitively Properties are setting up the extension and Show Panel is showing sidebar panel with the feed contents.
Parameters of the Properties dialog are:
  • XML Url: required, url of the rss feed you want to follow
  • XML2JSONP Proxy Url: required, url of the XML to JSONP proxy. The extension uses JSONP to display the feed contents so proxy is required to convert XML feed to JSONP. How to setup the proxy for testing the extension is following up shortly
  • cookiesJson: optional, authentication cookie if required by the feed provider
Test the extension
In order to test extension you will need XML2JSONP Proxy. Basic implementation of the proxy by Michal Bali can be found here:
http://michalbali.googlepages.com/xml2jsonp
I did install the Apach Tomcat 6.0 and setup the xml2json.war from the proxy's site. After installation XML2JSONP Proxy Url parameter would look like something like this:
http://localhost:8080/xml2json/Xml2JsonpProxyServlet
Just put any feed url into XML Url, maybe:
http://blog.decaresystems.ie/index.php/author/mbali/feed/
And after setting up the stuff just click on Tools > Intranet Feed Reader > Show Panel.

IMPORTANT!!!
Use only trusted XML 2 JSONP proxy, ideally from your own machine or from your intranet. JSONP works by injecting Javascript into the page thus using untrusted server might cause injection of malicious code and by doing that in the priviledged mode that the extension is working in can cause serious damage to your computer!

Related articles:
http://digitalmihailo.blogspot.com/2008/05/make-jsonp-work-in-firefox-chrome.html

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