One thing I enjoy doing when I browse through the hundreds of news items in my feed reader is commenting on blog posts. However, entering my name, url, and email address each time I want to do so becomes a pain. Taking a page out of a spammers book, I have solved this dilemma by using a Firefox extension known as Autofill Forms. This extension has more features than I know what to do with but I’ll explain how to simplify things down so that you can use this time saving extension to comment on blogs.
Once you install the extension, a default profile will be generated for you. I recommend creating a new profile and call it BlogCommenting. This profile will only contain the rules necessary to comment on blogs. Typically, the fields used on many of the blogging sites across the web are labeled Name, Email, and URL. As you can see from the following screenshot, I already have these fields configured so that when I press Alt-J which is the Autofill Forms keyboard shortcut, it automatically fills in those fields with these configured values.
To add field rules to your profile, check out the How To Add A Specific Field Rule Form Field wiki page for detailed instructions. Once this plugin is configured, blog commenting is as simple as pressing Alt-J on the keyboard and then typing out my comment. I have to mention the fact that this process does not work for every commenting form that is available. For instance, this extension has no effect on the fields presented in Disqus or third party commenting systems. For most everything else though, this extension ends up saving me a ton of time over the course of a year. Combine this with the fact that you can add as many form field rules as you want and you have yourself a real winner here.
This article is an entry for the Perfcast Blogging Challenge as mentioned in episode 5. To have your entry viewed by David and I, leave a comment with a link to your entry on the Perfcast episode 5 blog post. You may be the entry we review on the next episode.