Rich Wales

About me

Developer Information
Name Rich Wales
User since March 5, 2007
Number of add-ons developed 0 add-ons
Average rating of developer's add-ons Not yet rated

My Reviews

Surfon

Web site appears to be dead Rated 1 out of 5 stars

This used to be a nifty add-on, but the getsurfon.com web site stopped working several months ago (mid-2016). All browsers I've tried, on several client machines, return a blank page. Doing a bare "telnet surfon.com http" and requesting the root page (/) returns an error saying "503 Service Unavailable: Back-end server is at capacity". I haven't been able to find any way to contact the developer of the add-on. Until/unless the web site reappears, I must assume this add-on is dead.

Signature Switch

Generally good, but issues with dash separator Rated 3 out of 5 stars

I've been using this add-on for several years and have found it indispensable for handling different signatures for different situations.

I have one major complaint, however -- the add-on insists on including the so-called "Usenet signature separator" (a line containing two hyphens and a space) at the top of any signature.

Apparently the author of the add-on was under the (mis)impression that this separator line was mandated by Internet e-mail standards. In fact, it is not -- it is a convention expected only in the obsolescent Usenet newsgroup system, and it has never been mandated for e-mail. However, I was unable to convince the author to consider removing the separator line or even making it optional.

Note, BTW, that a configuration flag (mail.identity.default.suppress_signature_separator) was added to Thunderbird some time ago to omit the separator line before the initial signature included in a brand-new message. However, the Signature Switch add-on doesn't pay attention to this configuration flag -- perhaps, as I said above, because the author may still be convinced (mistakenly) that the separator line is a mandatory Internet e-mail standard which he must follow regardless of how many people want to ignore it. Whatever . . . .

From a technical point of view, it might be more complicated for the add-on to remove or replace a signature block if it isn't demarcated by the Usenet-standard separator line. On the other hand, it might be acceptable to assume that the last empty line in the e-mail body marked the start of the signature block.

Many people have complained that Signature Switch doesn't support embedding the signature before quoted text from a previous message. Accurately identifying an embedded signature block (in order to remove or replace it) could certainly be tricky, but I assume it could somehow be done. An embedded signature block absolutely must not include the Usenet separator line, since e-mail programs which support the separator line would misinterpret the bottom-quoted text after the embedded signature block as being part of the signature.

P.S.: As a kind of workaround, I discovered that if I include my own Usenet signature separator line in my signature file, Signature Switch will see it and will avoid adding its own separator. In the HTML versions of my various signatures, I specify a white colour for my own separator line -- so one of my signature files looks like this (remember the Signature Switch convention of combining both plain-text and HTML signatures into a single file, separated by a line containing only a single equals sign):

Rich
=
<span style="color:#FFFFFF">-- </span>

<span style="color:#800000"><b>Rich</b></span>


When I use the above signature, even though my separator line is enclosed in HTML markup, Signature Switch still notices it and doesn't add a separator of its own. This workaround doesn't help if I am composing plain text e-mail, and the add-on still puts the signature at the bottom of the message even if I'm writing my reply text above quoted material, but at least the separator line is invisible in HTML, so it's not quite so unsightly.

MailHops

Getting better ... Rated 3 out of 5 stars

The change you just made (on your server, I assume) seems to have addressed my concern about the wrong location being reported -- at least in part. I'm still seeing problems with some e-mail; I sent another screen shot to your Facebook account.

This review is for a previous version of the add-on (0.5).  This user has a previous review of this add-on.

MailHops

Cautiously hopeful about this add-on Rated 3 out of 5 stars

I'm coming to MailHops after having used the Country Lookup add-on for a long time. Country Lookup doesn't work in current versions of TB, and the author has apparently abandoned work on it.

I am seeing a couple of problems with MailHops. First, many locations are being reported with a city name plus a seemingly arbitrary number (instead of a country name). In my opinion, the country name should always be shown, even if it's the USA or Canada.

Second, the displayed location appears to be based on the FIRST (physically first, chronologically last) "Received:" line. If this add-on is to be of any use showing the origin of a message, it needs to display the location corresponding to the LAST (chronologically first) "Received:" line.

This review is for a previous version of the add-on (0.5). 

Country Lookup

Broken and abandoned Rated 1 out of 5 stars

This used to be one of my favourite add-ons. Unfortunately, it hasn't worked at all since at least TB5, and the author appears to have abandoned it -- my recent pleas to him to fix the problem have gone unanswered.

I've delayed upgrading from TB 3.1.16, holding out the faint hope that Country Lookup would get fixed, but it's obvious to me now that this simply isn't going to happen. And I have no experience at all writing TB add-ons myself, nor do I have the time right now to climb a steep learning curve in order to try to fix the problem myself, and it doesn't appear that anyone else out there has the required expertise, time, or interest either.

The "MailHops" add-on (suggested by someone else as a possible replacement) has issues of its own, but at least there seems to be some hope of getting those problems addressed -- unlike Country Lookup, which sadly appears to be gone for good.

This user has a previous review of this add-on.

Country Lookup

Any extension coders to try to fix this for latest TB? Rated 1 out of 5 stars

I love this add-on, but it stopped working around Thunderbird version 5. I've refused so far to update TB 3 on my home machine because I'm unwilling to give up this add-on.

I've looked at the code for Country Lookup version 2.0, but I have no experience with Mozilla add-on development and really don't know where to start. The last I heard from the developer, he was very busy with school and simply didn't have any time to track down the problem that breaks this add-on in the current Thunderbird. Any suggestions on where to find someone else who might be willing to look at the code for this add-on?

translateGe

Good Eng->Geo; not so good Geo->Eng Rated 4 out of 5 stars

This add-on works very well in the English-to-Georgian direction. As someone who is just starting to learn Georgian, I find this add-on works well for nouns and adjectives, but not so well for verbs. This may be unavoidable, since (as I'm sure everyone reading this knows) Georgian verbs involve prefixes and infixes -- something which this add-on isn't equipped to handle. This may also point to a deficiency in translate.ge, which seems to list only the "masdar" form of a verb (and this isn't enough information to allow someone who is learning the language to know how to conjugate a verb or recognize all its forms). What I wish this add-on had may very possibly be too complicated to expect to see in any piece of software.

This review is for a previous version of the add-on (0.0.10). 

Enigmail

Enigmail for TB3? Rated 5 out of 5 stars

I *love* Enigmail and can't imagine living without it. I'm worried, though, because I haven't seen any indication that there's going to be a version of Enigmail for the up-and-coming version 3 of Thunderbird. I tried checking the author's support forum on mozdev.org, but it doesn't look like anyone has said anything there (about anything) in several months. Does anyone know?

This review is for a previous version of the add-on (0.95.7).