Well, according to bookmarklets.com:
Bookmarklets are simple tools that extend the surf and search capabilities of Firefox and Explorer web browsers.
So, they're, uh... well, I guess that's not very specific. When was this website made, 1998? Oh...
Wikipedia is more helpful, though:
If you were to drag that link to your browser's Bookmarks bar or folder, it becomes a convenient link that pops up the same alert no matter what page you're viewing.
One opinion is that the increased implementation of Content Security Policy (CSP) has hindered bookmarklet adoption. In short, when the page you're browsing is served over SSL (i.e. the URL begins with
Now, in the early 2000s, we didn't have services like Dropbox to do this easily...so it could have pushed away developers at the time.
Firefox add-ons and Chrome extensions are examples of browser-based programs that overlap with the functionality of bookmarklets. Indeed, extensions provide even deeper functionality, as they can tap into browser features like password and tab management.
But there are also some downsides to extensions:
For these reasons, it's my opinion that bookmarklets are preferable to extensions for many use-cases. Not only are they simpler to design, but they are better for the end-user (without whom, developers would, you know, cease to exist).
Boot's belief is that any good build tool can automate the tedious parts of developing software. The Boot API lets Clojure developers write tasks that perform a specific operation on any project file.
To use our task, write code in a ClojureScript namespace and run
The next step to a working bookmarklet is to take the file, URL-encode it, and stick it in a
But why do it manually? Can't we automate that too?
boot-bookmarklet is a Boot task that fully automates the process described above.
Then, you can open
target/bookmarklets.html in your browser and drag the bookmarklet links into your bookmarks bar (or share with friends).
To summarize, boot-bookmarklet gives you:
I hope I've convinced you why it was a shame that bookmarklets went away. Will you help lead the comeback?
Dave is a Software Engineer at Kevel, where he uses Clojure and ClojureScript to build UIs, APIs, and backend services. He is also the creator of the Alda music composition programming language.