Monthly Archives: February 2011

Bugzilla Tweaks getting some attention again!

I have good news for you!  A while ago, Shawn convinced me to move the source code to the Bugzilla Tweaks add-on to bitbucket.  I did that, and lo and behold!  We now have two contributors to the add-on!  Steve Fink, and Heather Arthur, are the two wonderful people who sent me emails out of the blue and told me that they want to improve the add-on!  And they were not kidding!  Thanks to their efforts, I now have something which I’m happy to call Bugzilla Tweaks 1.7.

Heather hacked the add-on to make it compatible with the new Add-on SDK.  Steve taught it how to work on landfill as well as bmo, and made it redirect you to the bug’s page after changing a bug (to make it session-restore friendly).  And then, as if all of that wasn’t enough for a release, he decided to amaze me by making it easier to file bugs in the same product or component as the bug you’re viewing.

All this caused me to feel ashamed of myself for not having any cool ideas on what to do, so I decided to do the obvious (remove the "Assign to me" button which is now obsolete by the "take" link next to the assignee field.  And then I remembered that a while ago, Dan Veditz had suggested that I should copy Jesse‘s "bug attachment source" greasemonkey script.  So I thought that would be a cool feature to add myself so that I can continue to pretend to be cool.  So I did.

Then, I packed all of this awesomeness, put it in an XPI file, and submitted it to AMO.  Bugzilla Tweaks 1.7, the mundanely named new release, will be available for your enjoyment as soon as the AMO gods deem it appropriate for you.  If you have the previous version, 1.6, installed, then you should sit there and do nothing, and Firefox will magically upgrade you to the new version (yes, without restarting!) at a time of its convenience.  If you don’t have it installed, and you use bugzilla more than a few minutes per month, then you need to be kinder to yourself, and install this add-on.  If you really want to live on the edge, then you should go ahead and install it by pressing the scary yellow button on this page.

Now let me share a vision of the future (and my pathetic Gimp skills) with you.

Bugzilla Tweaks 1.7 screenshot

Update: I disabled the redirection and switched to using history.replaceState as suggested in the comments.  I’ve pushed another update to the add-on, version 1.8, which implements this.

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Important changes to the Firefox 4 spell checker

Update: We had to pull these changes out of Firefox 4 because of some regressions that they caused.  We will revisit this issue after Firefox 4, and will hopefully deliver this set of fixes in the next version of Firefox.


I landed a patch today which changes the Firefox 4 built-in spell checker in two important ways:

  • Firefox 4 will be able to correctly spell check words containing hyphens, such as the English word "scot-free".
  • Firefox 4 will be able to correctly spell check words up to 130 letters long.

Here is the slightly longer version of what changed.  Before this change, when Firefox saw a word such as "scot-free", it would break it into two words, "scot" and "free", and pass each of them to Hunspell (which is the spell checking engine we use) to see if they are correctly spelled or not.  So, even though the word was correctly spelled, Hunspell would not have any way to know that, because all it saw was Firefox asking it whether "scot" is correctly spelled, and whether "free" is correctly spelled.  The result was that "scot" was underlined as incorrectly spelled.

After this change, Firefox would pass the entire word, "scot-free" to Hunspell, which would enable Hunspell to recognize the whole word, and make the correct decision about its spelling.  This is especially important for the languages which use the hyphen character as part of the non-compound words frequently.

Also, previously, Firefox would automatically mark any word with more than 64 letters as being incorrectly spelled.  This is a problem for languages which tend to have words much longer than that, such as German and Swedish, to name a few.  The new limit is 130 letters.  This new limit might also not be enough for some words in some languages.  We plan to remove this limit entirely in future Firefox versions.

If you’re a localizer, or a dictionary author, there shouldn’t be any need for you to change the dictionary files for your language.  However, it would be great if you can test Firefox 4 nightlies starting from tomorrow with your languages to verify that it correctly recognizes long words in your language, or those words which have a hyphen in them (and are not compound words).  Keep in mind that these changes will only affect your language if the dictionary is capable of recognizing those words.  If you see any issues with this, please file a bug to let us know.

For the gory details, the curious reader can read bug 355178.

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