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Summary:

Jon Hicks from Hicks Design has released the Helvetireader skin for Google Reader. Helvetireader takes a minimalist approach, masking many of Google Readers abilities, creating a simple and very easy to read interface to Google’s excellent RSS feed reader. Google Reader has been my RSS reader […]

Jon Hicks from Hicks Design has released the Helvetireader skin for Google Reader. Helvetireader takes a minimalist approach, masking many of Google Readers abilities, creating a simple and very easy to read interface to Google’s excellent RSS feed reader.

Google Reader has been my RSS reader of choice since I made the switch from Bloglines last year. This new skin makes the site seem brand new, and makes it even easier for Reader to stand alone as desktop app with Fluid or Prism. To set up Helvetireader with Fluid, create a new Site Specific Browser for Google Reader, then launch the newly created app. Next, click on the script menu item, and select “New Userscript”. If you have the Developer Tools installed, this will launch Dashcode and allow you to edit the userscript. Just paste in this:

// ==UserScript==
// @name        Helvetireader
// @description Helvetireader style for Google Reader
// @include     https://*.google.com/reader/view/*
// @include     http://*.google.com/reader/view/*
// @include     htt*://*.google.*/reader/view*
// @author      Helvetireader by Jon Hicks (http://www.hicksdesign.co.uk)
// ==/UserScript==

var cssNode = document.createElement('link');
cssNode.type = 'text/css';
cssNode.rel = 'stylesheet';
cssNode.href = 'http://www.helvetireader.com/css/helvetireader.css';
cssNode.media = 'screen';
cssNode.title = 'dynamicLoadedSheet';
document.getElementsByTagName("head")[0].appendChild(cssNode);

Save your script, and relaunch the Fluid Google Reader App. After a second, the CSS from Helvetireader will kick in, and you’ll have a brand new look and feel to Google Reader. The CSS is actually hosted on the helvetireader.com web site, so you won’t have to modify your settings as the code is updated. This script is just as easy to set up on Firefox or Opera, and can be used with Safari or Camino with a little tweaking. Hicks expects this theme to be used by 10 people at the most, I expect it will be much more popular than that.

  1. can i apply this without fluid or prism?

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  2. Yes it can MoBurkhardt

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  3. where do i find instructions for Safari?

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  4. figured it out, sorry for my noobness :D

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  5. Hey can anyone save me and a few more people and make the app and share it?

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  6. From here on I couldn’t follow. Can you give a more fool-roof description?

    Next, click on the script menu item, and select “New Userscript”. If you have the Developer Tools installed, this will launch Dashcode and allow you to edit the userscript. Just paste in this:

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  7. @Oliver No problem, the “script” menu I mention is the black, scroll looking icon at the top, next to the “Window” menu item.

    @Lucky, I’ll email you the app I made with fluid if you like. Drop me a line at jonbuys76 at gmail.

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  8. Ty Jonathan.

    Now I got stuck here:

    If you have the Developer Tools installed, this will launch Dashcode and allow you to edit the userscript. Just paste in this:

    Where can I find and install Developer Tools?

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  9. I’m not sure you really need the dev tools just for this, it should launch some kind of text editor to edit the file. What happens when you click the “New Userscript” menu item?

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  10. Oliver: Press Control-Apple-O to open your “userscripts” folder. Create a new TextEdit file and save the code from the post into it. Rename the file “skin.user.js”. Finally go back to you Reader.app and under the Reader app you should be able to select your newly created script “skin”. Login before you see the changes.

    I hope this works for you.

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  11. Got it. Thanks for the immediate help.
    Best wishes from Germany

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  12. Thanks a lot, this one’s really good looking!

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  13. For Safari users, just do this:

    Install GreaseKit: http://8-p.info/greasekit/

    Then go to the helvetireader website and click on the “Install as a userscript” link. It’s really quite simple. That worked for me. And it installed it for Fluid that way too as GreaseKit installs for any Webkit-based browser.

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  14. [...] Pimp out Google Reader with Helvetireader…Jon Hicks from Hicks Design has released the Helvetireader skin for Google Reader. Helvetireader takes a minimalist approach, masking many of Google Readers abilities, creating a simple and very easy to read interface to Google’s excellent RSS feed reader. (via the apple blog) [...]

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  15. @Marc Tytus

    Thank you for your instructions! Worked like a charm!

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  16. damn, and just a few days before google reader did the redisgn… bad times.

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  17. @rajington

    There’s already an updated version for the redesign, just update your user scripts.

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  18. losbanditosanalogos Tuesday, January 13, 2009

    i cant get it to work… ive tryed everything. what marc tytus said, in fluid. nada. then with css. nada. ive even tryed shutting off adblock for safari. nothing again. i dont understand why its not working. i dont have the greaskit installed but fluid is supposed to have that… also when i add skin.user.js it installes it and renames it to helvetireader.user.js … what am i doing wrong?

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  19. I gave up on the instructions; I couldn’t figure it out. I’ll deal with my generic Google Calendar, Mail, & Reader….. sigh. Even if I am a Helvetica Whore…. :

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  20. Me either… nothing, nada, zip, there’s like no really useful instructions. And I installed SIMBL and GreaseKit and all that crap for nothing.

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  21. Here is a really good article with step by step instructions on http://simplestation.com/locomotion/using-helvetireader-fluid-app/
    how to install Helvetireader and use it in a Fluid.app.

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