Tag Archives: extension

How to Disable Animated GIFs in Chrome

I admit it: I’m a huge fan of the animated GIF. Don’t worry, though – I’m not going to embed any in this post, because the chances of you wanting to see an animation after reading that headline are slim.

There’s nothing wrong with the GIF image file, itself – it’s just that when frames are spliced together into a single GIF file, the resulting animation may be jarring to some (especially when used as a web page background).

In most browsers, you can simply tap the ‘Esc’ key to halt the sequence (since turning off support for GIFs altogether is never advised). Google Chrome, however, doesn’t currently support such a feature – so, until that happens within the browser itself, there are a few Google Chrome Extensions you might try using:

If you care to test any one of these scripts, here’s a page with a simple animated GIF to try. Did the extension work for you?

I was prompted to assemble this post after one too many people complained that they didn’t want to see any more animated GIFs cluttering up their Google Plus experience. They may still appear in My Google+ Profile from time to time, but that shouldn’t stop you from following me (especially with these extensions installed).

Research Web Pages Smarter with Scrible

If you’re a fan of Evernote, you’re going to love Scrible. This simple-to-use bookmarklet will make your research SO much easier. It doesn’t matter if you’re trying to find something for school or work… Scrible will be able to help you mark what you need in a way that makes sense to you. It may only be in beta form right now, but I have yet to find any real “issues” with it after using the service for a few hours tonight.

There’s nothing to install or download, and you can choose to use it as either a bookmark right on your toolbar or as a browser extension. To use as a bookmarklet, simply drag it to your browser’s bookmark toolbar. To use Scrible as an addon, follow the steps provided for your browser of choice.

As you can see from my screenshot, you have several different options available to you once you click to open Scrible. Highlight text just as you would with those little yellow markers on a physical page. Click on the color changer, choose a color and highlight any words you want to change the color of. Underline, bold, italicize or even strike through any text you decide needs to stand out a little more. Click the little note button to add notes to the website – anywhere on the page – and even choose which color you want them to be. You can place tiny little sticky notes everywhere!

When you are finished marking up the page, you aren’t really finished. If you choose to sign up for a free account, you can now save your annotated web page to your Scrible account online, making it simple to retrieve later. Additionally, you can quickly send an email copy of what you’ve done to yourself or anyone else… right from the bookmarklet. Best of all, there’s no chance of losing your work accidentally. If you attempt to close or change the page before saving a copy, a nice warning box will pop up asking if you really want to navigate away without saving.

You won’t have to head to the website to sign in each time you use Scrible: click the login button on the left end of the toolbar. When you’re finished and want it out of your way, click the large X at the right side. And of course, you can drag and drop Scrible anywhere on the page at any point in time.

This, my friends, is web research done right. Grab Scrible for yourself and let me know in the comments what you think!

WeatherBug Chrome Extension: Weather Done Right

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Marques is here this week talking about the very VERY cool WeatherBug Chrome extension. WeatherBug has been a community and Gnomedex supporter for years, and we’re always happy to take a look at what they’re doing. They’ve outdone themselves, though. This extension has some seriously awesome features, including live local weather conditions, detailed forecasts, severe weather alerting, maps and cameras right from your browser.

The visuals are really good in this Extension. You can add as many cities as you like to check current weather quickly in several locations. Change the metering system and even check out some live cameras.

When the live cameras are enabled, you can switch through nearby locations to see where it may be storming. If you live somewhere that doesn’t get any snow, why not check out the live cams in places that are having a blizzard? You can enjoy the action as it is happening.

I have to agree with Marques that this is an excellent addition to your Chrome install, even if it is supposedly only a “beta” version. Well done WeatherBug – and Marques.

How to Shorten a URL Within a Browser

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Matthew is here this week to show off a very cool Google Chrome extension which is built on the Bit.ly platform. It helps you quickly – and easily! – shorten any URL in a matter of seconds… without having to go to a different web page or tab.

  • Shorten, share and track links with bit.ly, right from your browser!
  • Preview metrics and page titles for bit.ly and bit.ly Pro links before you click them.
  • Receive instant notifications about your trending bit.ly links.
  • Shorten links on Twitter with a single click.
  • See a feature that’s missing? Request it

If you have trouble after installation, you should note that Chrome doesn’t allow execution of content scripts on pages that are already open. The team recommends restarting Chrome immediately after installing the extension.

If you are a Firefox or Internet Explorer user, you can check out the cross-browser sidebar.

Thanks, Matt, for an excellent screencast tip!

Organize Your Life With Quick Note

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This week, Marques is showing off one of his favorite Chrome Extensions: Quick Note. It’s such a simple way to organize yourself, remind yourself and keep yourself sane.

As of right now, you can only save notes locally to your own machine. However, the team behind the Extension is working to bring Cloud functionality into the swing of things. This will allow you to sync your Notes with services such as Diigo, Dropbox, box.net, Google docs, and Evernote.

Quick Note is simple to use. It loads instantly, as a notepad should. It boasts one-click access to all of your Notes, instant search to find what you need and the ability to add something new right within the app or via a right-click menu.

What note-taking/keeping program or app do you use?

Bring Chrome to Your iPhone

The Chome to iPhone Extension allows you to send text selections, links, and images directly to your Apple device. You can do this with the Extension’s button within the Chrome Extensions menu, or with a contextual menu within Google Chrome. It allows you to set up multiple devices so they can receive the information this Extension is sending them. It also allows you to set up multiple Chrome installs in different PCs. This is very useful to someone who has more than one machine.

You don’t need to jailbreak your device or install any “bridge apps” as you would with a QR relay code app. Chrome to iPhone will open YouTube URLs directly in the YouTube app. Google Map URLs open directly in the Maps app. This will also work with many Android devices, allowing you to send a page or link via a simple right click menu.

This Extension is simple, convenient and smart. You will have to follow a simple setup process on all of your iOS devices. Once you have, you’re ready to roll. The tool will create a shortcut to a static URL on your desktop. That URL redirects to whatever URL you last posted using Chrome to iPhone. Best of all, this will work anywhere that Google Chrome works!

What other cool browser extensions or add-ons do you recommend? How will they help members of the community to get things done in a more efficient manner?

How to Copy a URL from a Browser to a Mobile Device

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There are many different ways that you can copy a URL from a browser on your desktop (or laptop!) onto your mobile device. I’ve tried several of them, and finally have found what I feel is the easiest method of all. Google Chrome has an extension called “QR Relay” which is free to use. It will create a QR code from any web page which you can then scan into your phone using a corresponding application. On the iPhone, I happen to use quiQR.

Once the QR Relay extension is installed, you’ll notice a small button on the right side of your web pages. Click that whenever you need to copy a browser URL to place on your phone. A QR code box will automatically be generated. Once it is, I open the quiQR app on my iPhone and hold it still with the camera pointing at the new QR code on the webpage. It scans it in fairly quickly, and opens up the URL in question. Pretty awesome, eh?

There’s more than one reason I chose to use this exact app on my iPhone. I can create a QR code from pretty much anything – including a text message or block of text. For instance, I could place my shipping address and business phone number into a QR code. This way, should my phone ever be lost the QR code could be scanned to reveal the place to send the phone back to. That is, of course, if the person who found my phone cared to make sure it found its way back home.

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It's Time to Use a Different Browser When…

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Over on Lockergnome.net, Michael asked people which web browser they prefer, and why. This is something I am asked constantly. It certainly seems as though everyone has a definite preference: there are over a thousand views on that question alone, and several pages’ worth of answers. I’ve been using Safari for quite awhile, but I think I’m on the cusp of switching to something different.

The one I’m thinking of using is another webkit browser – Google Chrome. To be more specific, I plan on using the browser on which Chrome is based – Chromium. It’s very powerful, and it’s only getting better. It’s exceedingly fast, and there are a lot of extensions already available. Heck, there’s already five extensions that have been made by our community members that each have something to do with what we do on a daily basis!

It’s a big deal for most people when you switch primary browsers. There’s usually a good reason that you decided to make the change. Let’s face it – we hate change most of the time, even when it comes to our browsers. I’ve used Safari for nearly three years now, so yeah – this is a big deal for me.

With Chromium, I get nightly update builds loaded right onto my computer. That’s important to me… I’m always on the bleeding edge with the latest they have to offer. When you spend as much time as I do surfing the Internet, having the best browser available is critical.

Which browser do YOU use, and why is it your favorite?

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Favorite Firefox Extensions

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Here are some of the most popular extensions for Firefox, sent in by various community members. Be sure to keep sending in those top five lists!

  • IE tab: This allows you to quickly change your current Firefox window to render the Web page as Internet Explorer would see it. This comes in very handy when some sites require IE, or when it just looks cluttered up and would look clean when rendered with IE. You can go from IE to Firefox and back with a simple click.
  • Fasterfox: Fasterfox pretty much describes itself. It makes Firefox faster. There are a number of ways you can do this in general, as I have done, but downloading this extension makes it even faster! I was surprised the first time I tried it, as loading heavy content sites like YouTube generally seemed faster than without Fasterfox. Now, this will obviously differ with different PCs, connection speeds, etc, but it’s a great add-on. It also gives you the option of customizing it to your liking.
  • Firefox companion for eBay: Not only can you see all the items you’re watching and bidding on from a handy little sidebar, it also keeps track of how much time is left on every item, notifies you of messages, and alerts you when time is running out. It’s great for the eBay obsessive or for the person who occasionally logs on looking for deals.
  • Speed dial: This nifty extension gives allows you to set up to nine Web sites to be easily accessed via a pulldown toolbar or a very cool box display. This not only shows you the Web sites… it also allows you to refresh the pages without actually visiting them, letting you know if your favorite site has been updated or what content is new.
  • Flashblock: If you’ve ever been on the Internet, especially heavily ad-supported Web sites, you probably know of and are sick and tired of annoying Flash ads for everything from new movies to free ringtones. Flashblock simply turns off all the Flash you see on a Web site and replaces it with a play button, allowing you to view flash content at your will. It can becoming annoying for Web sites like YouTube, but you can allow flash on certain Web sites. It will then remember that Web site for future views. Also, putting in a helpful toolbar can let the user quickly turn on or off this feature if you feel the need to.
  • MinimizeToTray: The name says it all! You can set up the extension to either minimize on close, minimize to tray instead of the task bar, or both.
  • Google Toolbar for Firefox: I use this extension to synchronize my bookmarks to all of my computers. However, it also gives you one-click access to all your favorite Google features/services like Search, Calendar, Docs, Notebook, and more.
  • FoxyTunes: This extension is a must for those of us that are always browsing the web and listening to or watching something. It adds a media player controller to the status bar of the browser to control most popular media applications such as Windows Media Player, iTunes, & WinAmp. I find it particularly useful for browsing the web and watching videos on a dual monitor setup.

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