Chrome Extensions… Or a thing I thought would be easy

So, after some time working through Codecademy, I realised that all of the code that I was learning was fairly pointless if I couldn’t put it into practice. This does seem to be a problem with the learning process, it is as if I had sat there and learned a list of French verbs; it wouldn’t make me in any way qualified to actually speak French. 

I had heard people talking about using custom Chrome extensions, and decided that might be a good starting point. I wasn’t even sure what kind of extension I could make, but I decided once I had followed a tutorial or too, I could make my own adjustments. 

I copied a few pieces of code into a .json file as directed, opened chrome and told it to unpack the extension. Unsurprisingly, I got an error message. I read it through carefully, altered the code according to what I thought the problem was, and reloaded it. A different error message this time, which set the tone for the rest of the evening and left me feeling somewhat despondent about the entire endeavour. 

It took me quite a bit of reading to discover the problem – the tutorials I had carefully followed were several years out of date, and container sections of code that Chrome no longer recognised. I’ve read through the official Chrone blogs and figured out some of the problems. This will leave me starting from scratch but hopefully that’s a good thing. 

Meanwhile, I have at least learned about things like manifest.json, and the actual building and structure of small apps etc. something that a lot of coding lessons seem to leave out completely, or strangely assume that you already know. Hopefully I’ll have another post up soon where I’ll actually be able to share working code (fingers crossed!)

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