Firefox/Thunderbird Extension: ULDebunk

Update: I’ve updated ULDebunk to work with the 1.0 final version of Firefox and the 0.9 version of Thunderbird.

Update: I’ve updated ULDebunk to work with Firefox 0.10 PR and Thunderbird 0.8. You can now

download it here.

Unfortunately, I still don’t have the updater working, so you’ll have to uninstall/reinstall.

This will probably be of use to no-one in the world but me, but…

I’ve just released a new extension (my first) for Mozilla Firefox and Thunderbird called ULDebunk. I started writing it last Wednesday in response to the never-ending torrent of emails containing urban legends. Typically when I would get one of those emails I would switch over to my browser, go to Snopes.com, type in some search terms and see if I got any hits. I thought that I should be able to automate that process… and here it is. After far more hours than I expected to spend, I give you version 0.1 of ULDebunk.

What this thing does is add a context-menu item that says “Debunk It!” and it will take whatever text you currently have selected and run it through an urban legend search engine. It defaults to using Snopes.com, but you can change this in the preferences. It comes pre-loaded with the proper search URLs for both Snopes.com and UrbanLegends.com, but you can add your own. If you add your own, you need to insert “xxx” (without the quotes) into the url; this is there to indicate where the search text should go.

Currently it works perfectly in Firefox (0.9.2), and it works in Thunderbird (0.7.3) assuming a browser window is already open. I’m not sure why, but that’s what it does. Of course most of us keep a browser open all the time anyway, right? 🙂 It’s also not currently updatable using the “Update” button in the extension manager; I’m still looking into that.

I have only tested it with the aforementioned versions of the apps. I have tested on both Windows2000 and XP, but I don’t know that it matters that much. As usual, this software is free with no warranties, etc.

Download it here.

Let me know if you use it and any problems you might have. Or suggestions for improvements.

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