Browser Roundup

Which browser is best – Chrome, Firefox, or Opera; and if you choose Firefox, what are some add-ons that no other browser offers?

Browser Wars: Firefox vs. Chrome vs. Opera, The Definitive Benchmark, by Matt Smith (July 2)

– examines scalability of text, images, performance.

7 Extensions Firefox Users Love That No Other Browser Has, by Joel Lee (July 1)

– Tree Style Tab sounds interesting
– Firebug is an excellent tool for web page developers

Do Not Track – Don’t waste your time

Yahoo announced that it will ignore “do not track” signals from browsers – meaning the incognito setting that IE, Firefox, Chrome allowed. Yahoo says that there is no “single standard emerge that is effective, easy to use and has been adopted by the broader tech industry.”  Yahoo recommends that people using Yahoo use Yahoo’s own privacy tools.

Has anyone said balderdash to this? Are we to believe that Yahoo is sincere in respecting privacy so as not to bombard us with targeted ads?

Yahoo’s posting was — Yahoo’s Default = A Personalized Experience (Apr 30)

Ars Technica analyzed – Yahoo is the latest company ignoring Web users’ requests for privacy by Jon Brodkin (May 1)

“‘Do Not Track’ has largely been a failure.”



Firefox vs Chrome

This review for the upcoming new version of Firefox will make Chrome users take another look. Myself – I have my feet firmly planted in both camps.

Now is the time to switch back to Firefox, Jack Shofield, ZDNet (Apr 22)

Mark the passage about “Chrome’s heavy consumption of memory and other resources”. It leaves those tabs open forever.

Also – absolutely true — “Firefox is also better at using multiple search engines. You can still search from the address bar (Awesome Bar), as with Chrome, but Firefox also has a separate search box. This makes it easier to use different search providers, by picking them from the dropdown list. You can also add website-specific search engines. Amazon, eBay, Twitter and Wikipedia are defaults, but you can add many more: there are thousands. However, the default Google makes the search box a handy calculator.”

Browser protection

Here are 6 extensions to use with Firefox for hiding your identity and protecting you from bad things – and 5 of them work for Chrome also.

Use These 6 Extensions To Improve Privacy & Security On Firefox, Mihir Patkar, Make Use Of (April 2)

Adblock Plus is on the list because it will also block “worms, trojans and other types of malware.” Just a matter of subscribing to Malware Domains.

Disconnect Search is mentioned – search Google but without being tracked or recorded.

Chrome custom search

Use the Chrome address bar for running specialized searches by setting up own custom search engines. This goes beyond adding a favourite site to search such as IMdb. This article shows how to set up very specific tools such as Google Translate, Yahoo Finance, Facebook search, whois, and many more.

How To Create Custom Search Engines In Google Chrome To Boost Productivity by Mahesh Mohan, Minterest (Nov 7, 2013)

Going Incognito

For online privacy, you might try Disconnect for search; or Silo, which is a browser.

How to hide your online searches: We browse incognito with Disconnect and Silo, Mark Hachman, PCWorld (Mar 26)

Disconnect is also described in New app lets you search through Google without being tracked, Ben Zigterman (Mar 25)

Use Disconnect to search Google, Bing, Yahoo through the Disconnect proxy, thereby hiding your identity.

For more on the Silo “cloud browser”, see New Silo Web Browser Vanishes After Each Session by Lauren Goode, re/code (Mar 24)

The idea behind Silo is that it offers a cloud-based, secure browsing session that is running on Authentic8’s servers. It creates shortcuts to dozens of commerce, banking and health websites, and is supposed to make the login process easier and more secure.

Chrome’s incognito search

There are some features in the Chrome browser you’ll want to know about.

Google Chrome’s top 10 hidden features by Daniel Johnson, The Telegraph

“From the iPad interface to quick calculations, Daniel Johnson brings you 10 of Google Chrome’s best hidden features.”

Especially note incognito mode:

if you are concerned about privacy and the amount of information collected by Google when you are browsing, incognito mode stops Chrome from storing information about the websites you have visited. It still has your bookmarks but the sites you visit will not be stored in your browser history.

Use CTRL-Shift-N to open an incognito window.