I’ve been having a debate with some of my Technology Evangelist colleagues over how to best configure a browser for best productivity. What’s the best setup for people interested in consuming and sharing news from many sources in an efficient manner? Here are a few thoughts.
First, a definition: This group is made up of people I refer to as “web power users.”
Who are web power users?
Web Power Users spend a significant amount of time searching / browsing the web, reading blogs, using RSS readers, using many windows or tabs at one time, and sharing information they find via email, blogging, or shared bookmarks.
That definition will likely evolve with the web, but I think it’s works today. Let me know if you have some ideas for improving that definition. Especially if you consider yourself to be a web power user.
What’s the Best Browser Configuration?
Not surprisingly, we haven’t come to any definitive answers here, but we do have a few common themes we consider valuable:
1. Pop-up blockers: don’t waste our time closing windows.
2. Search Engine Toolbar: clicking to a search engine to conduct a search is also a waste of time. I prefer the Google toolbar , but there are other good ones you may prefer. They’re all free, so give a few a try.
3. Tabbed Browsing: It’s so much easier to work with six tabs in one window than six separate windows. This has been one of Firefox’s killer features, but is now available on IE using the MSN toolbar .
4. Bookmark Syncing: we haven’t figured out the perfect solution for this yet. If you use more than one browser, computer, and/or operating system, how do you keep your bookmarks in sync?
What browser configuration do you use?
I guess I need to go first, eh? Here’s how I configure my primary browser for power surfing:
1. Firefox Browser: Includes over twenty Firefox Extensions customizing the browser and adding additional functionality. I’ll get into that in a future post.
2. Google Toolbar: With Search Site, Word Find, and Page Info options turned on.
3. Bookmarks toolbar: Includes folders of bookmarks, and a few primary bookmarks for RSS additions, blogging, and del.icio.us
4. Homepage: My.Yahoo.com, for headlines, stock quotes, and other scannable updates.
I’ve shown you mine, now you show me yours. We’re looking for feedback on:
1. As a web power user, what is your preferred browser configuration?
2. Have you found the ultimate bookmarks/favorites syncing system?
3. What is your favorite toolbar, and why?
4. IE, Firefox, Other, and why?