AMO release with Theme Browser, Advanced Search and revised Developer Tools

The AMO team has been cranking hard for the past several weeks to bring you the latest batch of goodness. This week’s release includes some very cool end user and developer features, just in time for Firefox 3.

Theme Browser
Ever find it hard to see a bunch of Firefox themes at a glance? We did too and so we created the Theme Browser.

You will now be able to quickly see many theme previews at once, switch between categories and re-order to your heart’s content.

Advanced Search
Just click on the new “Advanced” tab at the bottom of the search panel and you’ll access the advanced search options where you can specify your search using all sorts of parameters.

You can limit your searches for add-ons to selected types, platforms, application version ranges, when it was last updated; then order the results by popularity or other orderings. One capability which may not be so evident is that leaving the search term field blank, will show you all the add-ons that meet the specified criteria, so you can easily find all Firefox 3-compatible themes (as depicted above) or the recently updated Firefox 3-compatible add-ons, etc…Of course, you can bookmark these custom searches to quickly get at your unique search results.

Developer Tools
The last area with new AJAXy flavor and lots of changes are the Developer Tools. A near complete rewrite, it is currently deployed alongside the older version until the full migration is complete. It has been described in detail in a five part series by Fligtar. With this release of AMO, you can try editing your add-on properties, authors, etc… and let us know if you find any problems. (The add-on submit process and the image preview manager are still under development.)

All the Rest
Besides that, the team has fixed a myriad of stuff including:

  • Auto-approval of all users reviews. All user reviews are made public immediately. Users and add-on authors can flag questionable reviews for moderation by AMO editors.
  • Optimized search performance and moved to a full text search module
  • Changes in the search algorithm so that exact name matches show up first
  • Ability to deliver add-on updates to language packs
  • An updated site privacy policy
  • Several new localizations, now at 27 total including: Catalan-Valencian & Hebrew
  • The inclusion of experimental add-ons on user info pages

6 responses

  1. Wladimir Palant wrote on :

    I have mixed feelings about that update. Some changes are great (theme browser, developer tools changes), others are definitely a step backwards. Default sort order for themes is theme name – I thought we noticed long ago that sorting by name (at least by default) wasn’t a good idea? User reviews aren’t pre-moderated any more – I guess I have to expect lots of trash reviews, and it will be my responsibility again to track them down (not to mention that, as an add-on author, you can manipulate the average rating by flagging only the trash reviews that have a bad rating). Yes, I understand that pre-moderation is dragging on AMO’s resources but… Search – filed bug 439227 for an issue that was solved long ago.

  2. h wrote on :

    How come there is still no way to upload search plugins?

  3. bhashem wrote on :

    @wladimir: We have some ideas on changing the default order and creating a new popularity sort that we’d like to explore. Will be asking for community input shortly.

    @h: It’s coming soon. Patience. Thanks.

  4. Richard wrote on :

    About that search capability. The search engine of the addons site is just terrible lately. It frequently, if not normally, fails to find the requested addon or buries it at the end of several pages of irrelevant items. It did not used to be this way. What changed and why?

    Searching via Google, an accurate “hit” is immediate.

    The search capability very badly needs improvement and soon.

  5. Brett Zamir wrote on :

    Great to see this kind of specificity in searching.

    I’d really like to be able to filter (or search) by the following other fields that extensions have:

    * those which are or are not site-specific add-ons (this is the most important to me, as I basically never want to use a site-specific one)
    * those which (do not) require external software
    * those for which source files can be viewed online
    * those which are pre-releases or not
    * those which contain binary components


  6. Tim Banker wrote on :

    Any chance you’ll be adding a category for dark themes?