Five Must Have Google Chrome Extensions

May 11th, 2010 |


Raymond Wong is a technology journalist who loves all things digital. He sees the world as a landscape that is continuously being shaped by computers. Aside from blogging for Ploked and his own technology blog, Tekunoloji, Raymond enjoys photography and learning about new web technologies. If you have a story that you would like him to write about, please direct all e-mails to raykm00 [at] gmail [dot] com. Lastly, if Twitter is more of your thing, you can follow him @raykm00!

Last week, I reviewed some Firefox tips and tricks. Due to popular demand, today I’m going to outline some must have extensions for Google’s rising superstar: Google Chrome.

1. AdBlock: Like the one on Firefox, my favorite extension is available on Chrome. All modern browsers have built-in pop up blockers. That’s fine and all, but how about getting just the web content itself. No stupid banner ads. No offerings to lure your kids’ small attention spans (if you have kids). It’s almost like a “stupid” blocker. You won’t get in trouble by clicking on a link with huge tits flashing because you won’t ever see it.

2. Google Translate: Scouring the web for relevant information is usually like a treasure hunt. You find some good things and some shitty things. When you land on a page that’s in another language, you’re all like “Oh fuck” and plan to leave. But wait, don’t leave just yet. In the tech world, leaks are always coming out of China or Russia or some obscure forum somewhere. Use Google Translate to help you out. After setting your default language, Google Translate will automatically pop up in a little unobtrusive bar at the top of your browser when you visit a page that is not in your default language. It’ll ask you if you want to translate the page, and you can pick from many different languages. It’s perfect for the language-challenged. I once used it to translate a page about a dog and a bunny. It turns out the dog and bunny were, like, lovers or something…

3. Facebook Photo Zoom: If you’re like me, you use Facebook for reasons other than poking and liking things. I like to use Facebook to share photos with family and friends. Unlike Flickr, almost everyone I know is on Facebook – and on it a lot. The only problem with Facebook is all the clicking it takes to do something. What if you could see thumbnails of photos in full-size without having to click on the album? Facebook Photo Zoom does just that. Just hover your mouse over any photo on Facebook after installing and voila!, photos automagically zoom in a nice little window that pops up. It’s great to use to check up on a friends’ always changing profile picture, when they appear in your news feed. No, I’m not a stalker…keep it moving!

4. Image Preview: Kind of similar to Facebook Photo Zoom. This extension allows you to create a “lightbox” for image and video searches. Go to Google and search for an image or video. Instead of having to click the image or video and go to the location, it opens up right there. Saving features are left in tact. No need to leave the page. Just brilliant.

5. Weather Underground: It pisses me off that in 2012 people are still weather-retarded. With so many places to receive info on the weather forecast, how could anyone be so ignorant? Right off the bat, I can count a bunch: Web, TV, Wii, iPhone, Widgets, Dash, Chumby, etc. Weather Underground sits nicely next to your URL bar and displays the current weather. Click on the icon and it will tell you how the weather is expected to change over the next few days, with a list of more detailed reports.

That’s my list for Google Chrome extensions. Like the list of Five Firefox Things Everyone Should Know, I hope this will be the first in a series of tips and tricks for Google Chrome users. Send your extension favorites or suggestions to raymond [at] ploked [dot] com or send me a tweet @raykm00

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Raymond Wong