Saturday, January 26, 2008

iPhone Favicons

Remember Favicons? Or did you ever wonder why some websites have a little icon in the address bar? Those are favicons. Firefox lets you drag them to your bookmarks bar, and it keeps the favicon. If you like a lot of bookmarks, you can edit the bookmark to lose th text, and just keep the favicon. After all, you know that miniature eBay icon is not a symbol of their diminished earnings in the wake of overpaying for Skype or Meg Whitman's retirement: it's the eBay logo.

Now, fast forward to the iPhone. With the latest firmware release, you can create "web clips," which are just Apple's way of saying bookmarks, right on the Home screen. Easy to do: visit a website on your iPhone, click the "+" button, and it prompts you if you want to save it as a bookmark or Web Clip. Problem? The icon of the Web Clip is often a mini snapshot of the page. Some sites, like Plaxo Mobile, are smart enough to pass along the magic icon resource, so the Web Clip is the Plaxo logo, rather than a snapshot of the login page. But what to do about the other sites?

Enter Clipalizer. You can create your own 57 x 57 PNG images, and tell Clipalizer what URL they are for. Clipalizer then gives you a special URL to visit on your iPhone. Visit it, and you are prompted to add the page as a Web Clip. Voila, your icon, with a direct link to the site you specified. The image on the left is my quick and dirty TripIt icon, thanks to Picnik letting me edit it down.

Oh, did I mention it's free?

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