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[tor-talk] extension works in FF, fails in TBB

Hi all,

My name is Greg Norcie, I'm a PhD student at Indiana University,
working on a project focusing on improving Tor usability.

This is a follow up to a paper looking at usability issues with the Tor
Browser Bundle.

The research group I'm leading is currently working on tweaking the Tor
Browser Bundle to test solutions to the issues we noted in a formal lab
study. (Our previous paper simply suggested changes, but did not
scientifically validate our suggestions)

One issue we noted was people feeling Tor was slow. Now, this is a
function of how Tor works - traffic passed through a series of nodes
will always have more latency than a direct connection.

So we are experimenting with a custom extension that pops up a message
to TBB users when a delay is detected, to see if reframing the delay
makes users tolerate the latency better.

However, we have hit a snag. While in a normal, run of the mill Firefox
install w/ the same extensions as the TBB, our extension functions -
delays are detected and a pop up box appears.

However, when we install our custom extension in the Tor Browser Bundle,
it fails to work. We initially thought this might be because our
extension was utilizing Javascript, but disabling NoScript doesn't fix
thes issue.

We're at a bit of a loss as to how to solve this issue, and are reaching
out to the Tor developer community to see if anyone might be able to
offer some insight as to what could be causing this failure. Our lead
developer recently left the project, so we're struggling to get things
on track in time for PETS)

The extension in question is available at the following URL
(password is "cryptoparty" - our uni's MegaUpload clone requires a
password for all files):

Any help anyone can provide would be greatly appreciated. (And of
course, it goes without saying we will be making our code available to
the Tor community)

Thanks for reading, have a great day.


Greg Norcie
PhD Student - Security Informatics
Indiana University
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