firefox plugins – which ones i use and why

firefox-iconI’ve loved Firefox since its inception, but these extensions make it even better. I’ve played with extensions off and on for quite a while and I’ve finally settled down with some must haves for me. I like the idea of customizing the browser to display exactly what the user wants to see. That is actually where I see the web going… where the user completely determines what s/he sees, in what order, format, etc. RSS and Atom feeds are a step in that direction, but the feed reader determines how you view the sites. The extensions are below.

  1. Adblock plus + Adblock Filterset.G Updater
  2. One of the BEST extensions out there because it blocks almost all ads. Need I say more?

  3. Gmail Ad Blocker
  4. The only thing better than gmail, as far as I’m concerned, is gmail sans the ads. This extension allows you to view more of your email instead of ads.

  5. Download status bar
  6. Download statusbar shows you the status of your downloads in the bottom of the browser window where there is dead space. I dislike the extra download window you would otherwise have to open to check your downloads. I use the mini setting.

  7. IE Tab
  8. There’s nothing more frustrating than getting to a site and it saying it’s not compatible with IE. IE Tab allows you to use the IE engine to view the page in a tab inside Firefox. You don’t have to open your IE browser or copy and paste the link! It works for me about 95% of the time.

  9. Gmail Manager
  10. I have multiple gmail accounts and I like to know when I get mail, but don’t want a full blown mail client like Thunderbird open. It displays your email count in the bottom bar of the browser. It’s definitely a time and space saver.

  11. Ubiquity
  12. Ubiquity is another plugin I love. It adds a console feature to the browser using easily understandable commands. You can watch the intro video on vimeo’s site or read more about it at Mozilla Labs. As a simple example, if you come across an interesting article on the internet (and you happen to have gmail open and or logged in) you can type control space to bring up the console and type “email this to joe@email.com” and it will email the page as a link to joe@email.com. Very cool stuff and potentially one of the futures of the interwebs.

  13. Yahoo! Mail Notifier
  14. Another email notification extension. I use yahoo too, but mostly for junk. It’s also displayed in the bottom bar of the browser and is very similar to the gmail extension.

  15. is.gd Creator
  16. I really like the is.gd service more than tinyurl because (you guessed it) the URL is smaller. This addon is a button that you can place in the toolbar that, when clicked, will convert the current URL to a shortened is.gd URL and automatically copy it to your clipboard AND show you with a small popup in the bottom right of your browser window. It saves me a lot of time.

  17. Quickmarks
  18. Quickmarks is an extension that allows you to assign hot keys to go to different websites. This is very handy to quickly go to a site you visit all the time like Reddit or your email. Not a must have, but very convenient and fast.

  19. Twitlet (actually a bookmarklet)
  20. This bookmarklet is essential if you’re a twitter addict and update it about 257325 times a day. You click this bookmark and enter your status and hit enter. That’s it. Simple. The only bad part about this bookmarklet is that it does hold your twitter login and pass in it, so you wouldn’t want to install on a shared or public PC.

Those are all the extensions I currently use, but I’m sure that is likely to change. Do you have any favorite extensions?

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Firefox + Ubiquity + Twitter plugin = awesome

So yesterday I reconfirmed how badass this deadly combination is. You just take Firefox, add Ubiquity with Twitter and you can update your twitter status in about 3 seconds from your firefox browser via command line. My favorite though is that I’ve also tied my Twitter to my Facebook account and Blog so all will update at the same time. Watch the video about Ubiquity and you’ll see why it’s so cool.

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