The year is about to draw to a close. It is that time when we plan our resolutions for the coming year, get ready for New Year’s Eve parties and celebrations and reflect back on the year that was. One fun thing to think about is the technology you used most in the past year. For me there is quite a bit, but I thought I would focus on one — web browser apps and extensions.
Being a writer, my browser is my most-used tool and this year I made a switch from Firefox to Google’s Chrome. Like Firefox, Chrome has countless extensions, but it also has apps that reside on the New Tab page — access them by opening a new tab and clicking on Apps at the bottom of the screen.
So, this got me thinking about which extensions and apps I used most over the past year and I decided to put together a little list of my top-5.
1. Tab Cloud
Tab Cloud is a great cross-platform (it works in Firefox as well) way to save your tabs and move them from PC to PC or even back and forth between two different brands of browsers. Sure, Chrome can do this, but it does sometimes crash and once in a while even loses your tabs, so I do periodic backups to Tab Cloud. The extension places a cloud icon on your menu bar.
While Chrome can do a lot with apps and extensions, Tampermonkey adds an additional dimension by letting you access user scripts in an easy way. Again, it adds an icon to your menu bar. Clicking it will give you access to options, access to new user scripts and a lot more.
Evernote is a great service. It works on the web and across multiple mobile platforms and allows you to save all sorts of information. It constantly syncs the notes and images so you can always access them from anywhere. The Web Clipper app allows you to “clip” sections or entire web pages to save for later reference.
4. Angry Birds
Yes, the popular mobile game has moved to other platforms. You can play it on Facebook, but you can also play it in Chrome. Access it by clicking Apps on a New Tab page.
This is a great little extension that gives you easy access to your Google Music right from the menu bar. There is no need to visit the site or click on a tab. You can Play, Pause and do more from the icon on your menu bar.
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Hitting stores today, Chrome Industries is proud to introduce four new models into the urban bike and fixed freestyle scene. Built to be indestructible like all of the Chrome bags, the new Chrome shoes are the Kursk Natural and Kursk Pro Natural, the Lower Southside and the addition of Chrome’s first-ever women’s model, the Dolores. “Our Summer Footwear line is inspired by American classics and built with our commitment to making bombproof gear for the city,” says, Steve McCallion, Chrome Industries’ President.
For the Kursk Natural and Kursk Pro Natural, Chrome created a limited run of their best selling urban cycling shoes in a natural canvas color. Military grade materials and special bike features like clip-in compatibility and stiffer soles for maximum riding performance make these the most sought after urban bike shoes on the market. They provide performance on the bike and look good chilling in the bar.
The Lower Southside is part skate, part fixed freestyle and part Chicago stoop party. It’s the low-top version of Chrome’s popular Southside. Fit and styling include a low profile silhouette with breathable side panels, full-grain leather and a latex wedge in the heel for impact cushioning. The Lower Southside is built for shredding the city and barbequing in the park.
Chrome’s first-ever women’s model, the Dolores features a durable 1000 denier nylon upper to withstand all the city can throw at it and a slimmed down silhouette tailored for a woman’s foot that features a narrow toe box and low profile design. The elastic tongue gorge allows the Dolores to be worn with or without laces. The Dolores provides women the look of an American classic with the durability and comfort for which Chrome is known.
Go to www.chromeindustries.com to find your local Chrome Retailer or you can purchase them through the online store and all of the Chrome HUBs in San Francisco, New York, Chicago and soon to open Portland.
Tags: bike, chicago, chrome, chrome bags, chrome dolores, chrome kursk natural, chrome kursk pro, chrome southside, cycling shoes, freestyle, kursk pro, New York, Performance, Portland, retail, San Francisco, urban bike, urban cycling
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With so many Web sites to follow, I find myself relying on my Google Reader regularly. Unfortunately, I also find that many RSS snippets will cut off right when I’m about to get to the good stuff. This is generally because the sites want you to click on their links. I understand the reasoning behind it (and am guilty of it myself), but this sometimes leaves me with 10 open tabs to read, making me wander and lose focus on 10 different Web sites.
To prevent this, I’ve started using Google Reader Inline after checking out a recent article on Lifehacker. This is a very useful extension for Chrome that allows you to load the full article without leaving your current tab or opening a new one (and still gives the writer’s site a page view). So after I’m done reading, I can move on to the next article in the queue, instead of wandering aimlessly through a Web site for 3 hours — like I do on Wikipedia.
Screenshot by Nicole Cozma/CNET)
Step 1: Download Google Reader Inline for Chrome.
Step 2: Open and log in to Google Reader.
Screenshot by Nicole Cozma/CNET)
Step 3: Browse through your articles in the RSS feed, and press on the small magnifying glass in the upper left-hand corner for any article you want to expand.
That’s all you have to do! How do you deal with text hidden “after the jump”? And do you see this extension being helpful?
The official Tumblr app was a late-comer to Android, and, sigh, hasn’t kept pace in the years since. That’s all changed. Today’s update simply puts the iOS version to shame. Surely this lead can’t last.
Tumblr for Android has a spiffy new user interface, which look and feel — including post-type icons — is more like the social network. The revamped UI is the real deal; well close to it. The app is speedier, and that includes photo browsing as well as loading blogs and posting to them. By comparison, Tumblr for iOS looks ugly and lacking. Access to Tumblr Radar from the Android app rocks. Still there are omissions that favor Tumblr for iOS, such as audio uploads. I’m surprised this feature isn’t available on the Android app (Wasn’t it once?).
“Its very rare for me to say that an app is sexy”, jozefd14 comments on the Google Play product page. “This is truly an awesome update. Hopefully iPhone/iPod Touch update will look like this. Its very nice to the eyes”. The Android user has HTC myTouch 4G.
Brett, who uses Droid Bionic: “A really good update for the app. Things are better, and I can actually open the photos on ny dashboard to get a better look. I just wish I could go through all of my ‘liked’ posts, because it seems I’m limited to a certain amount. I see the three periods at the end, so does it mean I have to stop there?”
Lee, who uses HTC Thunderbolt, offers more mixed reaction: “Love the new UI. Really well done. This app was just terrible before, definitely usable now! Problem: logs me out a lot and says its unable to reach the network. Really annoying!”
I must admit to rarely using Tumblr for Android, having likewise found previous versions deficient. But the update is promising.
Earlier today, I explained that for this week I’m putting away the RSS reader and using social media to ferret out the news. Thanks to software developer Aaron Burrell, whose post alerted me to Tumblr for Android — something that likely wouldn’t have popped up in Google Reader.
I may be old-fashioned in this regard but I prefer websites and companies to know as little about me as possible, unless the information are used for a service that I make active use of. I do not mind Amazon knowing that I’m an adult male, as this is blocking recommendations and offers aimed at a female audience on the site.
The method used tests if certain extensions are installed in the browser, which is different from listing all installed extensions. Here are the technical details on how this can done:
Every addon has a manifest.json file. In http[s]:// page you can try to load a script cross-scheme from chrome-extension:// URL, in this case – the manifest file. You just need the addon unique id to put into URL. If the extension is installed, manifest will load and onload event will fire. If not – onerror event is there for you.
You may still remember the CSS History Leak issue were a list of popular web addresses was used on websites to find out if a visitor did visit those sites in the past. The principle is the same, only the execution is different.
A proof-of-concept page has been created that Chrome users can visit for a demonstration. Chrome users without extensions installed, or other browser users, are not affected by this at all.
This has two implications. First a privacy one, as websites can use the information for a variety of purposes. They can for instance test if an adblocker is installed, or social networking, shopping or pregnancy extensions. Security is the other one. Malicious websites could check if add-ons with known vulnerabilities are installed that are no longer maintained by the author.
According to information posted in the comment section, add-ons installed from a custom-packed extension file or that are loaded unpacked are not recognized by the script.
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The Difference Between Google Chrome Extensions And Web Apps
Google Chrome Extension Reveals Website User Agent Detection
Where Do You Go For Declined Google Chrome Extensions
Google Chrome Extensions Manager
Google Chrome Extensions Manager
When you open a new tab in Chrome, you may want more than a few Google Apps or recently opened sites. Start is an extension that lets you add bookmarks and more to your start tab.
Many of us have tricked-out home pages, but if you don’t want to spend a lot of time and energy on it, the Chrome extension Start can add functionality to your start tabs without much effort. Here’s how to use it:
That’s it! While Start may not have a deeply robust set of tools, it is easy to use and is definitely a step up from the default start tab.