Chrome extensions brought a lot of innovation into the browser market, every Chrome user knows and loves at least a few. Very often, you know what you’re looking for and the Chrome web store usually has a solution for you. But sometimes, you run into amazing products you never thought would exist.
These days, even Firefox is working on a way to integrate Chrome extensions to make its browser more competitive and, as far as I’m concerned – more user friendly. Because it’s a true treat to give the community a chance to build what they need, and what they think other users might need. Some extensions I use only have 500 users, but that’s the beauty of opening development to community.
Keep building, I know I appreciate any add-on I can find if it fits into my workflow. An average Mozilla user has 5 extensions installed, (I couldn’t find the data for Chrome users), I have over 20. These are carefully selected and curated from a lot of junk tried out and today I have the browser I love.
Here are the extensions I use point to boost my productivity and improve my in-browser workflow.
I’ll start from the new tab. I’ve been rather picky about my new tab before I discovered Momentum Dash. My speed dial was carefully curated and the uncluttered, blank page just helped focus so I never really used one of those new tab extensions. Then came Momentum Dash. Momentum Dash asks for only one thing to focus on each day and reminds you of it with each new tab. Add some space for a to-do list, useful weather information and gorgeous photography and you get Momentum Dash. I still use it and would recommend everyone to try it.
If you use Todoist, a lot of your tasks come from emails, if you don’t use Todoist, well – check it out. This extension perfectly fits into my workflow, no need to open new tabs or copy and paste important to-dos from my email into Todoist. I just love it, saves a lot of time on a daily basis.
Although Pocket is an app I use and love daily, the extension is what made me fall in love with it. It’s the first one next to my url bar, it’s one of the few extensions I use multiple times a day. Pocket’s extension does a very simple thing – saves the article you currently have open into your Pocket – synced with mobile and desktop apps. It’s seamless, beautifully designed and one of the most useful extensions I use.
Buffer’s Chrome extension is the one reason I post to social media regularly. It’s so easy to use, fast and has a simple interface promising to do just what it says in seconds – share content you have open to whatever social network you need it to.
Again – Toggl just wouldn’t be the same without its Chrome extension. It’s actually an interface extension that appears in a lot of popular web tools helping me track time across the pages I visit. It’s seamless, fast, syncs with the mobile and desktop apps and gives you an excellent overview of your time spent working. It even has a built-in Pomodoro timer if you’re into that sort of thing.
Ah, Rescuetime, you make me feel so guilty. It also helps me find out whether I’ve been cheating in my Toggl reports and counts my daily productivity score. It’s just an extension but I really find it authoritative.
The internet is just prettier when you have clearly. Read your heart away without distractions, ads, stock images, related articles and all that jazz – just read. Enjoy the wonderfully simple interface anywhere on the web and help yourself remember more and be a happy reader.
I know, Youtube isn’t what you’d actually call productive but if you do need to watch some videos online, make sure to use Turn Off The Lights – as it does just that, turns your browser window into theater mode so you can focus on and enjoy the content you really want to see. It’s like Clearly for video.
Before I try to sell ad-blocking to anyone, here’s a non-sell – I used someone’s computer briefly a few days ago and they didn’t have AdBlock installed, I was devastated, it was like hell all over again. So, if you use an adblocker, and you most likely do – I dare you: disable it for an hour. At least all the hot singles in your area will be delighted.
Well, something I should’ve done way earlier. In order to help my productivity, I already disabled my Facebook profile for a few times for 3-6 months at a time. Then I found Newsfeed Eradicator, my savior.
Since it’s not only Facebook that’s distracting you – try out StayFocusd. It comes in right where willpower fails you, denying you access to the websites you mark as distracting. It does just that, it’ll help you stay on task and you can set it up however works for you. Challenge: Make your first day one to remember – disable everything for 8 hours and see how you feel. We’ll be waiting for that post-mortem Medium post.
Sidenotes has a simple, less-than-pretty, interface that helps you jot down notes. That’s simple, not really an innovation and you can do it with whatever. Until you realize – Sidenotes keeps your notes tied to the URL you attach them too which means you can leave yourself messages around the web and pick them up later. You can always access all your notes in their library, too.
Do you open 17 tabs at once, multitask between them, look for the one you want for a while, look some more, close 15, realize you closed that one as well, reopen them and then start looking again. Well, you’re not alone. That’s where OneTab comes in.
Teamweek button integrates with all the tools a team uses to stay organized like Github, Asana, Trello, Podio and Gitlab. Adding my tasks, travel arrangements and plans to my calendar is made seamless by this life-saving extension. Oh, did I mention it’s beautifully designed?
I listen to more noise than music, mostly because it helps me focus, it’s never distracting and oh my – the sound of rain relaxes me and keeps me productive at the same time. With Noisli, you can customize the sounds you want to hear – combine rail tracks with wind sounds and you’ll feel like you’re on a countryside trip. For a more relaxing environment, choose fireplace with rain and if you’re really specific with your hearing, you can even get pipe drips, rather annoying for me but obviously there for a reason.
Submit your favorite Chrome extensions in the comments and I might give them a try if I haven’t already!
Featured photo credit: Unsplash via images.unsplash.com
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