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do you know of any Firefox extension which could put the browser itself in a "blocked" state (not accepting input from the user) for a certain amount of time (configurable by a timer) and then get back to normal behaviour?

I was in fact looking for a way to prevent me to go and check emails, news, .. on the Internet while doing other more important tasks, and although one could claim to use more "discipline", I think forcing the browser to not be able to receive inputs from the user could be a better solution :)

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migrated from Aug 14 '09 at 8:05

This question came from our site for professional and enthusiast programmers.

Why not just visit a site with both Flash and JavaScript? – Sam Harwell Aug 14 '09 at 6:57
-> Superuser (password ewok adventure, if its still asking) – derobert Aug 14 '09 at 7:12
I think it was ewok.adventure (with a period in the middle) but I'm not sure. If enough users with higher rep than me vote, we can migrate it. Or you can just head over there and ask a brand new question. – MatrixFrog Aug 14 '09 at 7:17

Just use the following code. It will open an alert box, and everytime you close it, a new one will popup, until the timer expires. Crude, but should work.

javascript:(function(){var d = new Date().getTime()+1000*60*(prompt("Block for how many minutes?", "5"));while(new Date().getTime()<d){alert("Your are blocked! If you close this modal alert box another one will replace it until the timer expires, which will be in "+Math.ceil((d-new Date().getTime())/1000/60)+" minutes. Go do your work!");}})();

Copy it into the address bar, then drag the favicon to your bookmarks toolbar and give it a name. Any time you need a break, click on the bookmark, enter how many minutes it should block for, and you are set.

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The idea is good, even if the code is not working. Either make your own plugin either use a function like the one from Marius – Elzo Valugi Aug 14 '09 at 7:22
was wondering: will it block one browser tab or all of them? – puccio Aug 14 '09 at 7:46
Just test it, it works in Firefox. It blocks all tabs in the window you run it in. Another window will continue to run, so if you have several windows, then you have to run it in all the windows. – Marius Aug 14 '09 at 8:02

Hide all shortcuts from it, install it in some cryptic place (deep, deep in the folder hierarchy), activate the "save tabs on close", and close it when you want to "block" it.

This way, when you will have the urge to launch it back, you will have the time to rethink about it (as opposed to switching to it in taskbar, or clicking an easy-access shortcut).

It's a rather annoying method, but you talk about it like a dependency, an addiction. Because besides, just close it when you don't want to be distracted, you won't lose your current navigation, if you save session. It can take a lot of willpower to do that, but so far the most effective.

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If you’re on a Mac I recommend the SelfControl app. It’s not a Firefox extension, but it does what you want:

Is email a distraction? SelfControl is an OS X application which blocks access to incoming and/or outgoing mail servers and websites for a predetermined period of time. For example, you could block access to your email, facebook, and twitter for 90 minutes, but still have access to the rest of the web. Once started, it can not be undone by the application, by deleting the application, or by restarting the computer – you must wait for the timer to run out.

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Not exactly what you're asking for, but the add-ons in thiis link are in the spirit of your request: 4 Firefox Plugins to Stop Time Wasting.

I also remember seeing one that enforced periodic screen breaks, something along the lines of disabling Firefox for 10 minutes every hour, that could maybe be modified for what you want, but my Google-fu is failing me on this one now.

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Stealth Kiwi (which requires the Greasemonkey extension) will block access to the pages you tell it to most of the time, with a 10 minute break available every hour.

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I've used Leechblock, which seemed pretty good! I'd recommend it:

LeechBlock is a simple productivity tool: an extension for the Firefox web browser designed to block those time-wasting sites that can suck the life out of your working day. (You know: the ones that rhyme with "Blue Cube", "Space Hook", "Sticky Media", "Quitter", and the like.) All you need to do is specify which sites to block and when to block them.

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