[Greasemonkey] Greasemonkey: an Historical Perspective

Mark Pilgrim pilgrim at gmail.com
Mon Apr 18 15:05:09 EDT 2005


On 4/18/05, Matthew Gertner <matthew at allpeers.com> wrote:
> 
> > Ignoring for the moment that your proposal is fragile and error-prone
> > (in the same way that browser detection scripts are fragile and
> > error-prone, because they test versions instead of features),
> 
> This is precisely what I don't want to ignore. I'd much rather this turn
> into a "Matt, your idea won't work" kind of discussion rather than "Matt,
> your goal is hopelessly misguided."

That's going to be difficult, because I strongly believe that your
goal is hopelessly misguided.

> To be honest, I'm having trouble understanding where you're coming from. On
> the one hand, you are clearly aware of the ease of countering scripts you
> don't like (BTW: I already saw your "How to disable Greasemonkey" text but
> for some reason I was under the impression that this wasn't foolproof). On
> the other hand, you maintain that my proposal is a bad thing because it can
> be used to disable scripts. What gives?

One of my philosophy professors, when asked why he spent so much time
thinking about philosophical problems that had plagued thinkers for
centuries, replied, "Simply for the glory of knowing."

The Amazon hijacker series was an experiment in tactics and
countertactics.  I wanted to see how far GM could go to defeat anti-GM
scripts, and vice-versa.  To my surprise, I discovered a one-line hack
to disable GM altogether.  As far as I know, this hack still works in
0.3.  I published the hack and the entire experiment, and I continue
to draw attention to it, in the hopes that a future version of GM will
defeat it.

As Aaron has mentioned in other threads, he is contemplating a GM
rewrite that would, as a side effect, defeat all known attempts to
disable it.  If/when that rewrite becomes available, I will
immediately resume my experiments, simply for the glory of knowing.

-- 
Cheers,
-Mark


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