Yahoo! BrowserPlus™ is an open source platform that extends the capabilities of your web browser to make richer web experiences possible. Different websites can use BrowserPlus to support things like drag and drop from the desktop, easier file uploads, more efficient and secure acquisition of feeds and information, and native desktop notifications. BrowserPlus is a technology designed to "extend the web," so that developers can build more exciting web applications and so end-users can get more done inside their web browser.
Start by exploring our demo applications which include an advanced in-page Flickr photo uploader, a developer tool for exploring Web Services output, and a marble game which uses your laptop's motion sensor (if it has one). Web Developers can integrate any of these features into their own websites for free. Hop over to the developer section of our site for docs, tools, and more.
Developers interested in writing wholly new services for BrowserPlus can also join the fray. Our developer section has full documentation, tools, and tutorials for folks who want to shape the web of tomorrow.
Yahoo! is interested in open, industry-leading platforms that attract the most publishers and developers. An important part of that ecosystem includes the client-side tools those developers use to develop content. Until today, YUI has been the primary offering to this audience. BrowserPlus is the next step in providing solutions for browser-based web development.
Hop over to our installation page to install or check on the status of BrowserPlus.
Currently we support these operating systems:
On Mac we support Firefox 2 & 3, Google Chrome and Safari 3, 4 & 5
On Windows, we support Internet Explorer 6 & 7 & 8, Firefox 2 & 3, Safari 3, and have experimental support for Google Chrome
Linux? Yes, you have spoken loudly. Yes, this is on our roadmap. Other platforms/architectures? We'll continue to get BrowserPlus working in more environments to make it a viable mainstream platform for use in web applications... Keep the feedback coming.
Check the top right corner of this page. If BrowserPlus is installed, you'll see the current version number displayed under the search box.
You can manage the software from the "BrowserPlus Configuration Panel". This is launched on Mac from your "System Preferences". On Windows you can find both the uninstallation program and the Config Panel in Program Files -> Yahoo! BrowserPlus.
You can also remove BrowserPlus from Windows from the "Add/Remove Programs" control panel.
Regardless of the operating system, the uninstaller will remove every trace of BrowserPlus from your system, including previous versions and any settings or preferences that have been set while you've used BrowserPlus-powered sites.
Security is a major focus of BrowserPlus. Extending the browser is tricky business, and a lot of thought has gone into the set of restrictions that prevent websites from damaging your computer or accessing your files. To address security, we've followed the same web security precedent set by browser developers.
Additionally we have a "Configuration Panel" that lets you manage, on a site by site basis, what sites may use BrowserPlus. We'd love feedback on how to make the management and granting of permissions even better.
We've taken pains in building BrowserPlus to ensure that authorized sites may access data on your computer on your behalf while unauthorized sites may not. Protecting your privacy has been a primary goal throughout development.
This said, anytime you install a web browser plugin or an application on your computer, you are trusting that the authors of that software were diligent in protecting your privacy. We honor the trust that our users put in us and strive to uphold our end of the bargain.
Any BrowserPlus service (or even the system itself) can be restricted from use immediately by Yahoo! if a security risk is exposed. Better yet, because of the dynamic nature of the system, updates can be released and made available to users just as quickly. The result to you, the user, is that if a flaw is found you'll be required to approve an update the next time you use a site that might expose the flaw. The update experience will be just a seamless as the first time you activated services for that site.
First and foremost, most of BrowserPlus runs separately from your browser so we can minimize the impact and shut it down quickly when you don't need it. As an added bonus, that means BrowserPlus will rarely (and we hope never) affect the speed or stability of your day-to-day browsing.
Don't just take our word for it - we encourage you
to fire up Activity Monitor (Mac) or Task Manger
and let us know how we are doing. The background
program you're looking for is
Visit the developer section of our site. We've done our best to provide high level libraries to get started quickly, and full access to lower level APIs, to allow you full control over your user interface.
Well, it's going to take you about 15 minutes to get started, and some folks say that estimate is high. Hop over to our tutorial, that will walk you through the process of creating a new service, and from there you can branch out to explore the documentation, samples, and open source projects which explain and demonstrate how to go about developing BrowserPlus services.
Currently the model to get a service published is simple, come talk to us. This simple model is a bit of a placeholder as we build a faster and more formal process for validating and publishing services. While our preferred means of collaboration is via github, it's not neccesary that your service is hosted, nor is it neccesary that it's open source. We want to make web plugins better, and because web plugins are available to everyone, both individuals writing open source and businesses writing proprietary code, we too are open to most everything.
We're in the process of open sourcing everything. Right now we've released our SDK and are moving more and more of the services we've written onto github. The convention we use to indicate a project which consitutes a BrowserPlus service is by prepending bp- to the name of the project. This makes it pretty easy to search for all projects associated with new or existing BrowserPlus services.
We've committed to have the platform completely open source, and will move just as fast as we can.
For the BrowserPlus platform we've chosen the Mozilla Public License. BrowserPlus services may be licensed under any license a developer wishes provided it is compatible with the MPL. In general you'll find that the services we start on will be covered by a liberal BSD license.
There are lots of ways to get in touch with us. And as a general rule we try really hard to get back to you within about one business day. Here's our contact points:
|Forums||BrowserPlus forum on YDN|
|IRC||#browserplus on irc.freenode.net|