When I was a Firefox user I wrote a post about my favourite Firefox Add-ons . I’ve now been using Google Chrome for around six months, since the extensions (release blog post) came out their beta programme. Though I had used Google Chrome before the extensions release, I didn’t consider it a fully functional replacement of Firefox until the extensions which function in the same manner as add-ons were on the stable release.
The main reason I chose to install/use an extension is if assists my productivity or connectivity with services and channels across the web.
Collaboration and Connectivity:
For Twitter I use : Chromed Bird
I may be try Brizzly (though the usage and support comment may not warrant that)
For Google stuff I use : One Number – checks gmail, google reader, google voice and google wave for new stuff.
(would be even more useful if I had access to Google Voice )
Though I use Google Reader for my feed aggregation I still use Feedly to read them, and the Chrome extension works very well. I do like the fact Google Reader & Chrome integrate with Google Gears (or whatever it transforms into) to provide offline feed reading.
Shareaholic – The list is almost endless for what and where you can send and share things through Shareaholic . It’s great once you’ve signed in, you can prioritise the key services you use, and then whenever you need to capture, send or share it’s just there. Evernote , and Posterous are in my favourite services to use via Shareaholic .
Productivity and Efficiency:
This is area where I have most extensions in action or assisting me.
Browser sessions and bookmarks:
FreshStart – Cross Browser Session Manager – is an excellent extension, which utilises the synchronisation of bookmarks etc. with your Google account, to ensure your bookmark sessions or collections are shared across your set of device where you use Chrome. I use this extension a lot to form collections of relevant or related pages and launch them on the same machine or work with them on another. One of these collections is my set of pages when the browsers is launched.
I still use Xmarks bookmarks sync , to store an alternative back up of my bookmarks. This is a duplication of the google sync, but useful if I need to get to my bookmarks on another browser (IE or Firefox).
Start up, Search, New tabs:
Xmarks Thumbnails – providing a thumbnail of the page is actually helpful in selecting which search result link I chose, giving added visual information & clues (not only text), which I’m sure the brain appreciated. So many of our judgement calls are done on visual signals, I think only text (same colour/font) actually disables some of that natural ability.
Incredible StartPage – a very useful extension to drive the browser into your commonly used sites, access recent history and other bookmarks. It’s what I now use as the “new tab” default.
FastestChrome – is a must have! Automatically loaded “next” pages for continuous scrolling, instant search and word definitions on selection or highlighting, more search engine options integrated into result and relevancy links in wikipedia.
One of the best things about this extension is how quickly you start to instinctively use the functions and features.
Behind the scenes & Utility:
These are some of the important stuff that many of us who use browser extensions just load up in default, so because they don’t appear on the extension menu bar, doesn’t mean they don’t count.
Docs PDF/PowerPoint Viewer (by Google) – does what it says on the tin. Launches known document extensions into a preview mode, so that they are searchable and readable. Very useful for example if you’re looking a help document in pdf format and just need to search out a key term without the hassle of downloading, and then finding and launching the file.
IE Tab – allows you to display pages using IE in a tab within Chrome. For those oh not quite with it sites!
Wikipedia Companion – simply a full-featured mini-browser/lookup for Wikipedia.
Where can I find out more:
These are just my selection and opinion on Chrome extensions. Look at these links for more ideas.
and of course: