Brave Location Mobile Apps and Web Solutions

An IE8 Accelerator for sharing on Posterous

Originally posted on my old MSDN blog

I've been working on my friend Josie's website and was looking for a simple solution for her to be able to post news, updates etc. without too much technical knowledge.

After looking around a loads of different blogging sites, software and stuff somewhere in between I stumbled upon Posterous. You can read all about it from their FAQ but it's simplicity really is a thing of beauty.

Simply send an email to a special email address and it will get posted automatically to the blog. Attached images and videos can automatically get converted and embedded, and it has a host of Autopost features which let you forward details of new items on to Twitter, Facebook, Flickr,...

You can see the results for yourself and some of Josie's beautiful pictures at http://josiemccoy.posterous.com

Anyway, I thought it would be a good idea to be able to easily share information on Posterous using an IE8 Accelerator, and not finding one already at http://ieaddons.com I thought I’d knock one up myself.

Building the Accelerator

Accelerators are simply XML files containing descriptions of the services they offer – the MSDN documentation at http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc289775(VS.85).aspx is pretty straightforward to follow.

It was then simply a question of matching the Posterous variables on their “share” page documented at http://posterous.com/help/waystoshare to the Accelerator variables, which resulted in the following XML file.

 

<;?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<os:openServiceDescription xmlns:os="http://www.microsoft.com/schemas/openservicedescription/1.0">
<os:homepageUrl>http://www.posterous.com</os:homepageUrl>
<os:display>
<os:name>Share on Posterous</os:name>
<os:icon>http://www.posterous.com/favicon.ico</os:icon>
<os:description>Share on Posterous</os:description>
</os:display>
<os:activity category="Share">
<os:activityAction context="document">
<os:execute action="http://posterous.com/share" method="get">
<os:parameter name="linkto" value="{documentUrl}" type="text" />
<os:parameter name="title" value="{documentTitle}" type="text" />
</os:execute>
</os:activityAction>
<os:activityAction context="selection">
<os:execute action="http://posterous.com/share" method="get">
<os:parameter name="linkto" value="{documentUrl}" type="text" />
<os:parameter name="title" value="{documentTitle}" type="text" />
<os:parameter name="selection" value="{selection}" type="text" />
</os:execute>
</os:activityAction>
<os:activityAction context="link">
<os:execute action="http://posterous.com/share" method="get">
<os:parameter name="linkto" value="{link}" type="text" />
<os:parameter name="title" value="{linkText}" type="text" />
</os:execute>
</os:activityAction>
</os:activity>
</os:openServiceDescription>

Installing the Accelerator

To allow a user to install the accelerator, you simply add a JavaScript link as documented at http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc197034(VS.85).aspx

window.external.AddService(URL)

I’ve uploaded my Accelerator to the IE Addons Gallery for people to use but at the time of writing it’s being reviewed by the IE team (it’s only been a hour and it is Sunday!). However if you want to try it yourself, I’ve made the JavaScript link to my copy of the XML file here.

N.B. This blog post has now moved to https://writingontablets.com