[Greasemonkey] Greasemonkey: a futurist perspective

Matthew Gertner matthew at allpeers.com
Wed Apr 20 15:19:11 EDT 2005


Neil,

I totally agree with you. I don't think that "generic ways to extend website
functionality are right around the corner", nor do I consider GM to be the
enemy. Sometimes hyperbole helps to make an impact, and perhaps I abuse
this, but I really do feel that GM is a very positive force in getting
people to think about issues that might otherwise be too abstract. The
problem is that when something is as cool as GM, people have a tendency to
see it as the be-all and end-all, vow to devote their lives to maintaining
the status quo, etc. With my essay I just wanted to make the point that
there are still many weaknesses with the GM-powered user-customizable web
experience. I don't claim to know how it will all pan out, but if I can
provoke smart people to think about it a bit more then perhaps that will
help us to figure it out together.

Cheers,
Matt

> -----Original Message-----
> From: greasemonkey-bounces at mozdev.org [mailto:greasemonkey-
> bounces at mozdev.org] On Behalf Of Neil Kandalgaonkar
> Sent: Tuesday, April 19, 2005 7:01 PM
> To: greasemonkey at mozdev.org
> Subject: [Greasemonkey] Greasemonkey: a futurist perspective
> 
> Matthew, I think you're concerned about something that isn't going to
> happen. You seem to feel that generic ways to extend website
> functionality are right around the corner, and GM is pre-empting this.
> 
> I see it the other way around. Today, few people understand the benefits
> of a user-hackable web. No matter how good a framework you created,
> you'd find few takers. GM makes the benefits (and perils) obvious.
> 
> For the typical HTML site, there is very little that GM can do to
> improve the experience. Essentially, every modification that GM does has
> to be within the website owner's data model already.
> 
> But sites that have a service orientation, like Flickr or Google Maps,
> will prosper in this new world. Other website owners will start to
> notice this very soon -- the big players have already.
> 
> And then the day will come when someone revamps their website and gets a
> storm of complaints from users who used GM to provide some essential
> function. It will make people think about providing stable interfaces.
> 
> You're right: this is a moment to be agitating for a new vision of the
> web. But I think GM is your ally here, not your enemy.
> 
> Aaron Boodman wrote:
> > If all GM does is get people thinking about
> > their content being repurposed and allow a few hackers to fix some
> > annoying bugs, I'm OK with that.
> 
> Amen.
> 
> --
> Neil Kandalgaonkar
> neilk at brevity.org | http://brevity.org/
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> 
> 





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