Monday, June 27, 2005

Will there ever be another Greasemonkey version?

Short answer: yes

Slightly longer answer: sometime soon. Jeremy and I have been working on a refactor of Greasemonkey that we hope will make it easier to maintain and to add features to.

This was mostly my idea, Jeremy just wanted to get the next version out. So blame me, I am weak :-). I just got tired of looking at the really, really bad "my-first-extension" Greasemonkey codebase.

What you'll get out of the deal:
  • A "new" button in the manage UI
  • Compatibility with latest Deer Park builds
  • Compatibility with Seamonkey
  • Compatibility with Menu Editor (but not Compact Menu probably)
  • Less of a chance of being detected or stopped by page authors
  • Minor UI improvements, such as being able to press Enter/Esc in the various dialogs
  • Easier development of future features
  • No more memory leaks
  • Accelerator keys for menu commands
This one bit is actually the difficult point. There is this known bug in XUL where event handlers for menu items are lost when the nodes they are attached to are removed from the DOM. To get around this, we previously wrote the feature to rebuild the User script commands menu item whenever the Tools menu was activated.

However, since registered menu items' commands need to be active immediately and cannot wait for the Tools menu to be shown, this approach will no longer work. The only solution we have been able to come up with so far seems to crash Firefox for unknown reasons.

We'll work on this a little longer, but if no solution presents itself, we may need to ditch accelerator keys temporarily until we understand better what is causing this problem. We'll work on it for another week at the most.

But hey! is very close to being real! That's cool, right? We have hosting with TextDrive all set up and we just need to put the code up there and turn it on and we'll be ready to roll. W00t!

Very sorry for the delay on the next version. Hang in there, monkeyers.