MozillaZine's ChromeZone Now Open!
Monday May 24th, 1999
Steve Morrison, creator of the XULTool, has joined MozillaZine (as some of you may already know). He has been hard at work getting the XULTool working on our site, and we're pleased to announce that the ChromeZone is now online.
Now, with a simple form, you can change the look and feel of Mozilla, and create your own themes! You can also choose from some ready-made themes we have available. You can also send your own themes to ChromeZone for addition to our site.
So, fire up apprunner and head over to the chromeZone.
We got a lot of great entries for our little "name our new chrome area" contest, but in our final vote, "ChromeZone" came out on top. A number of people submitted the name "ChromeZone" or a variation for our contest. Clayton Scott was the first, however, and his prize is a stuffed Mozilla doll from Netscape. I know we didn't promise any prizes for the contest, but we wanted to give something to the winner.
Thanks to everyone for you contributions, and if you have any suggestions for the chromeZone, let us know.
#71 How powerful is Chrome?
Wednesday May 26th, 1999 10:45 AM
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Ok, we've seen XUL be able to change the toolbars on Mozilla, and to wire up menus, but how much can it *really* do, compared to a C++ or Java interface.
1) Can it support drag and drop? 2) can it do anything besides roll-over buttons using gifs? What if I wanted a progress bar? 3) Is it really that dynamic? Could I add a splitpane with an text widget to my toolbar, and use it to sent instant messages? Can I add a button that drops down a popup menu when you click it?
See, the question is, how much API is really exposed?
I would love to be able to wire up an ICQ or Java applet to a text widget at the bottom of my Mozilla window.
Can XUL do this? IE5 can.
Otherwise, XUL *is* equal to skins. If all XUL can be used to do is add menu items to call existing Mozilla functioanlity, or add stupid rollover gif buttons like a gazilion other web pages have, then count me out.
I don't mind having a boring looking grey toolbar as long as it *stays the same* and doesn't change all the time. If all XUL can do is change the look of the buttons or to add shortcuts, then it is a toy.
I think it is a real shame that Mozilla doesn't try to take the best advantage of each platform by integrating with it. Mozilla should support ActiveX/COM via the OBJECT tag, IE supports Netscape plugins after all.
If you're imagining Sony and Gateway using Gecko, imagine the trouble they'd have to go through to have Gecko talk to their other widgets if it can't speak COM.
Mozilla should be able to speak COM, CORBA, OpenDoc, and any other native platform scripting language (Frontier) so people can use it for everything.
Imagine being able to drop a Word viewer widget into Mozilla, and being able to add XUL buttons that can call OLE scripting routines on the Word widget to extract data and place it into the DOM tree. You could use Gecko to write an editor that converts Word files to XML, or to clip data from Word files and place them into your homepage.
Integration is very valuable, and all these "not invented here, MS sucks, Linux rulez" people should realize that if you are going to replace windows, you have to provide a smooth transition path and can't expect people to go cold turkey.