Greasemonkey, for the intranet! 

Greasemonkey IconEver since I started using Greasemonkey (GM), I found more and more ways to improve aspects of public websites. What’s more, GM also proved to be invaluable for quick testing of mashups and other fashionable web 2.0 tricks.Using GM this way, it can be used as a tool for rapid prototyping of advanced user interfaces and Ajax enhancements as well. So a web builder could write a quick and dirty user script in order to prove the viability of a concept.That would be the natural border for user scripts within the corporate world, as far as I could imagine.Wrong! Peter Laird, Managing Architect for the WebLogic Portal engineering team at BEA, wrote a 5-part blog series about deploying Greasemonkey user scripts in the corporate environment.

  1. More Mashups: Using Greasemonkey to Weave New Features into Web Sites
  2. Building a Greasemonkey Mashup Tutorial
  3. Greasemonkey in the Enterprise: When is GM the Right Tool for IT?
  4. Beware of Greasemonkey’s Inverted Security Model
  5. Solving the Greasemonkey Script Versioning Problem

The first two articles are a very nice and moderate technical introduction to Greasemonkey. The next installment starts to position GM as a valuable corporate intranet addition, with a checklist to find out if it is the right tool for your situation. The last two articles focus on the important security- and deployment issues, focused on the corporate situation again.I’m really curious whether corporate IT department heads will really be convinced by these articles. The checklist (part 3) lists a number of very frequent corporate / intranet annoyances where GM will help and the author’s background (BEA) is very trustworthy, so I give it a good chance.Definitely worth a read, even if you’re not a corporate IT head!