Saturday, May 30, 2009

How to blog about a link using Opera Mini

Most of my blog posts are reactive in nature. I would highlight links which I came across, and comment on the issue at hand. On the desktop, I would normally do this by using the "Send To" button on the Google Toolbar installed as an add-on to the Firefox browser.

For browsers that can't install Google Toolbar, an alternative is BlogThis! Clicking on the BlogThis! bookmark fires off some javascript code to replicate the Send To function.

Since I started using the Nokia E71, I've been struggling to get the same functionality, i.e. blog about a link I just read. The Nokia built-in browser offered a "Blog entry" function, but I couldn't get it to work.

Also, I started using the Opera Mini browser more often. It was simply a faster browser. Assessing the Blogger website on both browsers was possible, but without a copy and paste function (to copy the url of the link), I was back to square one.

Eventually, I manage to find an interim solution. I activated the email posting feature on Blogger. Then, using the Nokia browser, I could post to my blog by sending the link via email on the E71. It wasn't a pretty solution as I had grown tired of surfing on the slower Nokia browser.

As usual, the solution was right under my nose.

One of the killer features of Opera Mini (and Opera) is the ability to sync all your bookmarks across computers. For example, once synced, your Opera browser at work will see the same bookmarks as those on your home PC. And more importantly in this case, your Opera Mini browser.

First, a quick detour. Yesterday, I manage to find out that Opera Mini supported the use of bookmarklets via WAPReview. So I started trying to get the BlogThis! bookmarklet into my E71 by inserting it in a link on my blog. I would then access the link using the E71, mark it as a bookmark, and edit the link to strip away the url, leaving the javascript code intact. But I couldn't get it to work.

Thankfully, the Eureka moment wasn't too far away. I realised that the objective was to copy the bookmarklet onto the phone. Then I remembered Opera Link, the sync function on Opera and Opera Mini.

On Opera Mini, there are 2 sets of bookmarks. One list is permanent on the phone, the other available online when you sync. I already had the BlogThis! bookmark on my PC. So I accessed it on the E71, and copied over to the permanent bookmarks.

To use it, I simply go to the BlogThis! bookmarklet when I see a nice link to blog about. This brings up the usual Blogger post webpage, complete with the url link already in the blog post. I can then blog my comments, and save or publish it immediately.

Having tried it in one of the earlier posts here, I am glad to say that it works seamlessly.

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