Prism Tricks #1

Here’s a simple way to extend a web application with Prism: Create a simple mashup by adding a sidebar.

Prism supports a simple sidebar that can display a secondary web application. Just enable the sidebar in the configuration and load content into the sidebar using some scripting. Here’s the example:




function startup() {
  host.sidebar.add("Chat", "");
  host.sidebar.visible = true;

Take those to files and make a bundle, name it sidebar.webapp and open it using Prism. On Windows and Mac, you should be able to double-click the webapp bundle. On Linux (or from a terminal) use:
prism -webapp [path-to-bundle]

You should see Google Docs loaded with Google Talk in the sidebar! Something like this:



  1. David Humphrey said,

    November 7, 2007 @ 12:24 pm

    #1 eh? You’re on fire! Burn the house down.

  2. mawrya said,

    November 7, 2007 @ 1:20 pm

    You’re starting to give me ideas! How do we install extensions into prism? I have some custom web pages I have packaged up as firefox extensions so I can run then from a chrome:// URI which means those web pages have elevated privileges – mainly so they can access files on my hard drive. It would make for some very interesting mashups if I could reference chrome:// URIs in a sidebar and a http:// URI in the main window, or visa versa. If its possible, would you include that in one of your future tricks?

    This is great stuff, you should submit it to

  3. Turulcsirip - Lajos Koszti said,

    November 7, 2007 @ 1:38 pm

    [...] sidebar howto « el?z? | Lajos Koszti — 2007. 11. 07. [...]

  4. sull said,

    November 7, 2007 @ 2:40 pm

    thanks mark! ;)

  5. KevinJames said,

    November 8, 2007 @ 11:59 am

    I love the idea, but can’t the loading of the sidebar be implemented in the configuration file as well. This would cut down on the amount of coding necessary, even though it isn’t much. Is there as simple way of extending the parameters recognized by Prism?

  6. Goofy said,

    November 12, 2007 @ 2:13 pm

    Hello :)

    Just like mawrya above, I would like to install an extension inside my prism webapp and I need some guidance.

    I have made my test webapp ( a zipped version is here: ) to access BabelZilla online translation system. It is working fine.
    But I would be very pleased if I could use this extension which is dedicated to help translation work on the same site (the idea is to get a glossary help)

    Is there any way to add it ?

    Thanks fo any answer

    - Goofy

    BabelZilla Team

  7. links for 2007-11-16 » Bleu-Rouge blog said,

    November 16, 2007 @ 9:23 am

    [...] Mark Finkle’s Weblog » Prism Tricks #1 (tags: prism xulrunner mozilla tips) [...]

  8. Utiliser Prism » daria blogue said,

    November 18, 2007 @ 6:58 am

    [...] vous dit comment faire dans son “premier” (donc y’en aura d’autres) trucs ici in [...]

RSS feed for comments on this post