JSON explorer for Firebug!

As Firefox plugins go, Firebug is definitely one of my favorites. It has saved me and the rest of the Setfive team dozens of development hours. One of the nicest features of Firebug is the NET panel. The NET panel allows a developer to monitor HTTP requests that Firefox is making during the course of a page’s execution. This is particularly useful to AJAX heavy applications because it allows a developer to easily debug XHR requests and responses.

Although this is great, the NET panel is severely lacking when it comes to dealing with JSON responses. Since JSON must be a legal JavaScript string, it can’t contain any line breaks. As a consequence, debugging long JSON strings is extremely painful.

This issue has been on the Firebug TODO list for some time. I figured this would be a good place to jump into the Firebug codebase. I dropped an email to the Firebug working group and received some great feedback. Honza gave me a template extension to extend the NET panel and provided some great insight and advice on implementing a JSON viewer.

After a couple of weeks of intermittent work, the JSON-Viewer extension is ready to play with. Honza has committed the code into the Firebug 1.4+ branch so if you grab a new build you’ll be able to use the JSON viewer.


Read more at Honza’s blog post