Google’s Sidewiki is a pretty nifty tool. But many people including myself don’t want to install the whole toolbar just for this one feature. There are some sad little bookmarklet implementations out there that show you an unformatted Sidewiki page where you can’t add anything – and that’s just missing the whole point of this feature.
While I haven’t found a way to completely do away with the toolbar, I have found a way to remove it’s presence in Firefox and have just the Sidewiki icon sitting innocuously next to the top menu next to the “Help” menu. Here’s what it looks like (Click to enlarge):
As you can see, the entire toolbar has gone, and I haven’t replaced my regular Firefox search box either (I used Experimental keyboard shortcuts and I don’t like it changed). Just a little Sidewiki icon that doesn’t harm anyone! Of course, the Toolbar is still installed – and I haven’t found a way to do away with that yet. So here’s how I did it:
- Install the Google Toolbar – leave the default settings
- Go to View -> Toolbars -> Customize
- You’ll have a palette of icons now. Reach over with your mouse cursor, and grab the Sidewiki Icon from the Google Toolbar. Drag the icon next to the “Help” menu (or any other place you want it to be)
- Click Done.
- Again go to View -> Toolbars, and uncheck the Google Toolbar option
You’re through! You should get the result in the screenshot above. No Google Toolbar with full Sidewiki functionality in an unobtrusive place. It’s a good enough workaround for me right now until someone comes up with a good bookmarklet that completely replicates the functionality of the Toolbar icon. That may not even be possible though. Till then, I’m happy :)