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Extending Flickr Experience With Firefox

September 29, 2007 by debbie T | Digital PhotographyFirefox BrowserFlickr

I have been using Flickr for years, but just recently I have become much more active in the community. I have found a few tools that have made my experience at Flickr much more efficient.

fd’s Flickr Toys – Scout

Most seasoned Flickr users know about fd’s Flickr Toys. I hate to admit that my favorite toy is Scout.

Scout tracks the images that have been in and out of Flickr’s Explore Daily Top 500. (See screen shot below)


You can also use Scout to track any other Flickr users Explorer photos.

Note about Explorer: There is special method to the way Flickr chooses photos to include in Explore. It is a top secret algorithm, but it looks like Flickr doesn’t like it when you join a bunch of groups to gain views. To learn more about Scout and Explore, read the FAQ.

Other Flickr Toys

There are many other fd’s Flickr Toys to play with, including creating your own Flickr Profile, Slideshow, or Mosaic.

There is a Help Forum and a fd’s Flickr Toys Discussion Group

Greasemonkey Scripts

Greasemonkey is a Firefox extension that allows the user to install little javascript files that customizes the display of a web page.

Installing Greasemonkey is as easy as installing any other Firefox extension. Once Greasemonkey is installed, it should be fairly easy to install new scripts. Most times, just clicking on the script file will show the install window.

I really am a Greasemonkey newbie, so I can’t really offer much help on scripts, but most should install and work very easily. Find many Greasemonkey scripts at Userscripts.org, but be aware that some scripts can be malicious, so be careful what you download.

Anyway, I have found a couple of Flickr scripts worth mentioning. (Check the Userscripts.org site for more Flickr scripts.)

Add Referrer to Comments – Greasemonkey Script

The first Flickr Greasemonkey script I installed was Add Referrer into Comments. When enabled, the script will automatically insert a little message at the end of your posted comments stating where you came from. This will let the photo owner know where you found his/her photo. (See screen shot)

flickr referrer comments

I found it a little annoying that I had to keep deleting the referrer text on comments to my own photos so I edited the script to exclude my photos.

To add an excluded page, click Tools>Greasemonkey>Manage User Scripts, in the “Excluded Pages” area, add your flickr photo URL with an asterisk after it – for example: http://www.flickr.com/photos/disdatmac/*

flickr referrer comments exclude

Flickr Easy Photo Post – Greasemonkey Script

I have had this script installed for awhile, but keep forgetting to use it; writing this article has jogged my memory, so I will try to remember.

Anyway, the Flickr Easy Photo Post greasemonkey script remembers the last 15 visited photos, so you can easily access any one of them to post into comments or group messages.

Once installed, you will find a link above the comments box “Post a photo …” – click the link and the window with all 15 photos opens. Choose a size, then click the photo thumbnail. The html code for the photo will be inserted into the message box. Pretty nifty! And saves time too!

(SIC) Super Invite Comment – Greasemonkey Script

The SIC – Super Invite Comment is another helpful comment script. If you try to access the author’s page at the end of the month, you might receive a blank page stating that their bandwidth has been exceeded. You can probably read the original page in Google’s cache, but you probably won’t be able to download the script file.

Anyway, what this script does, is create 2 pull-down menus (above the comments text block) which will automatically post “invite” and “voting” html code for many popular groups, like My Winners, Flickr Diamond, and Heart Awards.

I found this script helpful, but a bit confusing, because I don’t use everyone of the groups listed on the menus, and I would forget to use it on the ones I do use because there were so many groups. My solution? I edited the file to customize it for my own needs.

Editing the SIC Super Invite Comment Script

The beauty of Greasemonkey scripts is that they are USER-EDITABLE! So, I rolled up my sleeves and opened the script file in my favorite text editor. I found I could disable the groups I didn’t use, and add new coding for the ones I did use.

In my opinion, editing this file is not for those that do not have any html or programming experience. It is a bit complex, and it could render the script useless if it is edited incorrectly. Please please please back up your original file before you attempt any edits.

The greasemonkey files are found in your Firefox profile in the “gm_scripts” folder. The file name is “sicsuperinvitecomment.user.js” – open the file in a plain text editor like Notepad or Text Wrangler. Do NOT use Word or another word processor to edit this file. Again, please back up this file before you mess with it!

If you do not know where your Firefox profile folder is stored, please view this helpful article.

Okay, so getting back to the file and how I edited it.

The SIC script is made of two sections. The section starting at line #37 organizes the html coding for each group (invites and votes) and the section that creates the drop down menus (invites and votes) starts at around line #483.

First, I disabled the groups I wasn’t using. I didn’t want to completely delete any groups from the script, just in case I wanted to re-add them at a later time; I left the section for html code as is, but in the menus section, I added a // in front of the <option> tag, which removed that group from the drop down menu (starting at approximately line #483.)

For example:

//+ '<option value="56">WowieKazowie</option>'

I moved all disabled <option> tags so they were all together, but you can leave them where they are. I just found it more readable to have them together.

I rearranged the menu so my most used groups were at the top. Depending on your usage, you might like your favorites in the middle of the menu list.

Next is the kind of scary part: adding new groups.

edit sic greasemonkey file

Again, I do not recommend adding new groups unless you have prior html or programming experience. It can be very time-consuming to add a new group, and you must remember to add each separate line in “quotes” making sure to add a plus sign + for each subsequent line of code. Each ” listed in the html code needs to be escaped with a backward slash \ and if you want to add a new line, use the \n

Sounds complicated? Yeah, unfortunately it is.

But I would love it if you checked out my edited script, SOS – Invites & Comments for Flickr. I have made it available for download.

Flickr Follow Comment Greasemonkey Script

I just found the Flickr Follow Comment script today. This script will add more functionality to the Recent Comments You Made page on Flickr. I make a lot of comments, but it is hard to track any replies because sometimes it gets so busy, and it is impossible to weed through all the extra posts to find one that was a direct reply to a comment you made.

This comment simplifies that page, allowing you to filter certain criteria, such as only viewing replies from your contacts, or friends.

Right now, I am testing the script, but it seems a bit slow to load. Don’t know if it will be worth it to use it on a regular basis, if the page takes forever to load. We’ll see. I will post an update if I find this script useful.

That’s it for now. Good luck and have fun with Flickr!

There are 3 comments

  1. Hi,
    It was a very useful article . I am a flickr addict myself and this was extremely useful . I m sure i ll start saving a lot of time for invites and comments from now on !

    Comment by Sankar on July 9th, 2008
  2. Does anyone know why 6v8.gamboni.com has been out of service for so long and if it’s coming back?

    Comment by Desirae on November 3rd, 2008
  3. I noticed that the site was done the other day. Did you try finding the script on http://userscripts.org/

    Comment by debbie T on November 4th, 2008