By Elliot Jay Stocks
It’s a rare occurrence when so much excitement can be produced by the humble bookmarklet, but in the last two days not one but two of these little gems have caught my eye and stolen my heart.
Web designers and developers the world over have long been fans of browser plugins that reveal information about the page and – more specifically – its document structure; I don’t think I need to mention Chris Pedrick’s ‘Web Developer’ extension for the main Gecko-based browsers.
But for pure simplicity’s sake and the advantage of some rather lovely UI design, XRAY gives you the power to view any page’s box model simply by clicking a bookmarklet and it has the advantage of working in Safari, for those of you who’ve felt left out of the Web Developer extension party. (Incidentally, Jon Hicks provided an excellent round-up of development plugins for Safari a while back.)
[ westciv.com/xray ]
Mr. Hicks also vented his frustration at not having a Microformats plugin for the Apple browser, and once again it was the bookmarklet that came to the rescue, this time in the form of the aptly-named ‘Microformats’ by Remy Sharp. Again: elegance, simplicity and functionality all rolled into one tiny but tasty package.
As with XRAY, the Microformats bookmarklet allows you to view and download any microformatted information embedded in the page. Great from a user’s point of view, but also great for testing your microformatted markup!