Devoted users of Google and Chrome will appreciate this – The 13 Best Chrome Extensions by Google You Probably Aren’t Using in Make Use Of (Apr 20)
Microsoft has taken some action to limit users of Cortana, the digital assistant in Windows 10, to using the Edge browser and Bing search engine. These three are tightly integrated – something that may very well annoy people.
Danny SUllivan writes about it in Microsoft blocks Google Chrome & other browsers from Cortana in latest Windows 10 release, Search Engine Land (Apr 28). Sullivan offers a way to hack the search engine setting, but it still seems pretty locked down. Competing digital assistants – Google Now, Apple’s Siri, etc – do the same.
If you are concerned about privacy when browsing, it will be worth while reading about the control center in the Firefox browser regarding protection against tracking and adjusting permissions.
The Control Center panel opens when you click the Site Info button button in the address bar. It lets you manage security and privacy settings for a website in one place. Use the Control Center to view information about a site and to make choices about site permissions, trackers or insecure content.
Browsers save a record of the pages you have visited, downloads you’ve done, and much else. Reviewing this history is useful if you’d like to retrace steps. This page describes the history function in Firefox – what is collected, how to review, how to clear, and how to disable.
Delete browsing, search and download history on Firefox, Mozilla Support (April)
That Home button on the keyboard actually works in Chrome to take you to top of page. See five other shortcuts and one important extension to improve performance.
7 Chrome shortcuts you should start using right away, Rick Broida, CNet (Mar 28)
Firefox lets us mute noisy tabs with a click. Don’t have to look for the offending video or audio that began to play without your permission. You’ll see a speaker symbol on the tab for the page making the noise. Use it to mute. See Mute sound in Firefox tabs.
Chrome settings to check – though this article advises that you change them. Good for people who have installed several extensions.
10 Hidden Chrome Settings You Should Be Changing, MakeUseOf (Mar 3)
There’s still more than can be done to make browsing easier, safer, and the ads more enjoyable. Brave Software is working on it.
Mozilla cofounder Brendan Eich’s startup, Brave, launches browser for Mac, Windows, iOS, Android, Jordan Novet, VB (Jan 20)
Brave is the latest new browser for early adopters to try. Last year, former Opera CEO Jon von Tetzchner launched the Vivaldi browser in beta. And in launching Windows 10, Microsoft rolled out Edge, its answer to popular browsers like Chrome and Firefox and its Internet Explorer successor. Neither of these is tackling the complexity of digital advertising in the way Brave is, however.
Microsoft will stop supporting Internet Explorer 8, 9 and 10 in mid-January. Good. Either upgrade to 11 or change to Firefox or Chrome.
The new Mozilla Firefox received 4 1/2 stars from PC Magazine.
Mozilla Firefox, Michael Muchmore, PC Magazine (Nov 4)
BOTTOM LINE: With plenty of new features, including tracking protection in Private Browsing mode, integrated video calling, and even an app store, Firefox reigns as our favorite Web browser.
Some of the features to look for:
- Offers tracking protection in private browsing – maybe we should be using that
- Has built-in video chatting
- Has reading mode – that means it makes those hideously cultered pages readable! “When you land on an article page, a book icon appears at the right of the address box; turning on reading mode is a simple matter of clicking on this.”
- Supports tab groups
- And so much more
And it was found to be as efficient as Chrome.