Fluid for the mac is a terrific piece of software. It allows you to create a separate “app” for specific web sites, and works especially well for websites that you frequently visit. For me, my RSS reader (which is google) is a constant go-to; it’s how I keep up with tons of blogs, etc. Other fluid apps I have setup are Brizzly, The New York Times web site, and Pandora. All good stuff.
One of my big frustrations, though, is that there is no ad blocking capability built-in to Fluid. (And there never will be.) Even if you add in an adblocker for Safari (Fluid basically runs a Safari browser), it will not carry through on Fluid apps.
I’ve searched several times for a solution, but have not found anything…until today. It’s not perfect, but works well enough.
Here’s how to do it.
I’m assuming here you have some experience with setting up Fluid, setting the allowed URLs, and all that. If not, please leave a comment, and I’m happy to provide more of a step-by-step.
First, download the CSS file found here at this site (the file is called userContent.css). This is built specifically built to block the images from well-known ad services.
Next, following the instructions here on a site for an unrelated application for Fluid, goto the Preferences inside your Fluid app, and select the “Userstyles” option. Once there, you’ll hit the plus sign, and check the box next to “URL Pattern.” in the right column box, type in an expression to allow the URL of your app. (This is the same thing you do under “Advanced,” where you allow the site’s URL.) For example, in my google reader fluid app, I simply put “*google.com*” (without the quotes…).
Below that, you’ll want to paste in the contents of the CSS file you downloaded in the first step. It’s easy to do — open the CSS file on your mac (using TextEdit, or, as on my mac, DashCode), select it all, and paste it into the field in the Fluid preferences.
Close the preferences window, reload your app, and the ads should (mostly) be gone. No more eye-burning ads on your screen!!!
Well, again, it’s mostly. It doesn’t work perfectly, as some get through. And I’ve only done limited testing, in just a couple apps.
But, so far, it’s the simplest way I’ve found to do this.