Lightweight themes UI landed

As part of the ongoing work to bring basic support for lightweight themes (based on the ideas from the Personas extension) into Firefox 3.6 I’ve today landed the main UI parts that allow users to see and select between lightweight themes they have used recently. o landed most of the backend last week  but we’re still waiting on the support for installing new lightweight themes before this feature will be truly usable in the development builds. For the time being here is a shot of what the UI looks like in the add-ons manager after you have used some lightweight themes.

Lightweight themes UI

The idea is that users will install lightweight themes from websites. The add-ons manager will include the most recent lightweight themes used to allow the user to use them again. For this release they are offered as a straight alternative instead of other installed themes. We’re going to replace the default icon there with something more themey.

Third-party extension installation status

I have been remiss in not posting a status update about this in two weeks, but that is mostly because we have unfortunately had to slow down work on this feature. The problem is that a string freeze became necessary for all toolkit code (the code shared with the Firefox mobile browser and where this feature would have lived). Unfortunately this all came up over a small period when I was travelling long distances and having to take time out to satisfy immigration authorities that I wasn’t a terrorist intent on bringing down the U.S. government.

In the end there just wasn’t enough time to finalise the UI and be confident that it was correct before the freeze. This means that this feature isn’t going to make Firefox 3.6, however the intention is to continue working on it to get it into Firefox 3.7. It will just be on hold for a short time since I need to devote myself to Firefox 3.6 blockers.