On Safari Browser Extensions
A browser extension is a small script that can be installed to add additional functionality to your browsing experience. They can do amazing things, or simply quite useful things. Some extensions can enhance productivity, especially if you update blogs frequently, work in graphic design, or develop web pages. There are hundreds available, and many support multiple platforms (Win, Mac, Linux) and multiple browsers.
Mozilla’s FireFox was one of the first browsers to support extensions, and today Safari 5x, Google Chrome, Opera, and I understand even Internet Explorer has jumped on the bandwagon, although many developers still refuse to support IE.
Each browser will have a link in the menu, usually found in preferences to search an extension gallery. There may be multiple instances of extensions from different developers with similar functions. If you’d like to try out several with similar functions, I recommend disabling the first before trying out a second (or a third) similar extension.
The following lists the extensions that I’ve been using with great success in Safari/Mac OSX. Many of them are also available for other browsers, or extensions with similar functionality are available.
The mother-ship on where to find extensions to accentuate your browsing experience. You can install directly from this page, or download a <dot>safariextz file from a developer’s site. Double-click the file and it automagically installs.
My comments on the above extensions at the jump (read more) except for Ultimate Status Bar (you need this), I couldn’t find a direct link, still available in the Safari Extensions gallery, and EverNote, which deserves a topic of it’s own.
Be a web detective. Ghostery is your window into the invisible web – tags, web bugs, pixels and beacons that are included on web pages in order to get an idea of your online behavior.
Ghostery is a browser tool available for Firefox, Chrome, Safari, Opera, Internet Explorer, as well as a standalone app available for iOS. It scans the page for trackers – scripts, pixels, and other elements – and notifies you of the companies whose code is present on the webpage you are visiting. These trackers often aren’t otherwise visible and are often not detailed in the page source code. Ghostery allows you to learn more about these companies and their practices, and block the page elements from loading if the user chooses.
Ads magically disappear. Really!
I’ve been using ClickToFlash for years to stop automatically loading Flash videos. An absolute must have if you like to reopen pages from a previous session and find that four or five YouTubes or other Flash videos are trying to load and play at the same time. Why not load the Flash when you are ready? It’s just one click away.
I will be testing ClickToPlugin also at this page. It seems to have all the features and more for YouTube5, which I have been using, below.
Watch and optionally download YouTube videos in HTML5 (mp4) instead of Flash. MP4 plays much better with my machine compared to FLV
Translate Safari Extension found at the page above – I thought this might be good to have around.
Language Translation – Toolbar item to translate the current page via Google Translate.
Adds the old Stop/Reload buttons back to the Safari toolbar.
I’m just old-school like that.
A quick easy way to create shortened URL links. Works with several URL shortener services.
I can’t say enough good things about LastPass. Save sites, user names and passwords in the cloud using a master log-in. Works with Linux, Mac, Win, iOS, maybe more. Create groups of your favorite sites, and/or auto-fill forms, from anywhere. They also feature a built-in password generator.
Social Fixer for Facebook fixes annoyances, adds features, and enhances existing functionality to make Facebook more fun and efficient
I’ve been using this extension since it was known as BetterFacebook. Don’t like apps showing up in your FaceBook feed? Send them to a tab instead. Show your feed in the old single column format, re-enable the post button, expand pictures on hover, lot’s of neat functionality with this one. Includes a Wizard to get you started, and you can customize what you see to your hearts content. You can even change the “skins” or the color layout if you want. (I don’t)
is a very lightweight search engine. I haven’t used it much yet. Extension is available by clicking the Add to Browser button in the lower right side of the page. The really BIG selling point of DuckDuckGo is NO TRACKING of your searches, which is a huge intrusion of your PRIVACY and is one of Google and Yahoo!s biggest money-makers. More here: Google tracks you. We don’t. An illustrated guide.