An article detailing the launch of a new experimental contact integration add-on for Firefox from Mozilla Labs.
Fully utilizing Firefox's well-designed XUL framework and add-on system, Mozilla Labs continually releases new add-ons for its very popular browser, helping enhance its user experience.
The latest batch of add-ons are related to the contacts and identity of the user, and how to integrate them completely into the browser. One of these add-ons was released by Mozilla Labs recently, and it is an experimental add-on called Contacts that helps the user import contact and address book information from a variety of Web sources. Not only can the add-on make it very easy for the user to access this information, it will also help insert/send it to various remote applications, as well as provide auto-completion features within the browser itself (such as when you are typing an email address into a Web dialog).
The experimental Contacts add-on can at present import data from Gmail, Twitter, and the local system address book on OS X, apart from using the Gravatar service to compile contact avatars. After being imported and archived, the user's contact data is available in address book form that is actually a contact management tool. Considered to be more secure than the present add-contacts mechanisms of social networking sites, the content management tool only makes information available to Web services with the user's explicit permission, and can also selectively provide limited details about specific groups of contacts.
The Contacts add-on conforms to W3C Contacts API specification, a standard developed by Nokia that is quickly becoming widely accepted, and is compatible with innumerable web applications, allowing them in turn to synchronise with the browser's address book. The experimental add-on also supports Plaxo's Portable Contacts standard, which is associated with the OpenSocial initiative, and Mozilla hopes to integrate it with Raindrop - an experimental communication platform being developed by Mozilla Messaging. Another use of the Contacts add-on includes contact synchronization support integrated in to Weave.