Sunday, June 26, 2005

Cool service - del.icio.us direc.tor

The del.icio.us direc.tor is an interesting application of AJAX - providing an alternative web-based UI for del.icio.us - any del.icio.us page, such as your set of tags can be browsed using the service. The method is described on the page - you need to bookmark the service and then once you are on a del.icio.us page, click the bookmarklet. The technology used is a combination of Javascript, xslt.
This project uses the only reliable loophole for executing foreign Javascript code: the bookmarklet bootloader. It works by inserting a <script> element directly into the DOM, which is then immediately executed by the browser. The injected Javascript wipes the existing del.icio.us page and replaces the entire body with the direc.tor UI. At the same time, direc.tor makes an XmlHTTPRequest to http://del.icio.us/api/posts/all to get the XML listing of the user's bookmarks, which is persisted through the lifetime of the direc.tor page. Because del.icio.us uses the standard HTTP basic authentication, the browser will automatically ask for credentials if it has not been established yet. Since the client is communicating directly with del.icio.us, those credentials never pass through this

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