How To: Restore the Old Lifehacker & Gawker Layouts

With their new website design, Lifehacker lost me as a reader.  And I wasn’t alone—the readership of lifehacker.com dropped almost 40% since the redesign.

The localized versions of Gawker Media sites (Lifehacker included) have maintained their old design, but unfortunately, the RSS feed linked from ca.lifehacker.com (Canadian Lifehacker) is the same as the one at lifehacker.com. Damn.

It would be nice if these URLs could be rewritten on the fly though, eh?  Well, they can be with the URL Rewrite extension for Google Chrome!

The URL Rewrite extension has a simple configuration screen with three input fields that allow you to use regular expressions to redirect one URL to another.

The Source URL pattern is:
http://lifehacker.com/(.*)

The “i” modifier is used (without quotes) so the redirect isn’t case-sensitive.

The Destination URL pattern is:
http://ca.lifehacker.com/$1

And voila, Lifehacker is back to it’s old self and has me back as a happy reader!

May 25, 2011: This post was updated because Gawker (finally) removed hashbangs (#!) from their URLs, presumably for reasons related to SEO.