When surfing the web, we have 4 major browsers (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, and Safari) we can choose from, each with it’s own set of ups and downs. Two small features of all modern browsers, which I find have big impact on my day, are “Recent pages” and The “Favorites/Bookmarks” bar.
I first experienced this feature in IE7 and was hooked right away. IE added a small down arrow next to the Forward Button that would show you a list of recent pages you’ve been to. This became useful when I would surf through pages, and then decide I wanted to go 4 steps back. Now instead of clicking the back button 4 times I could choose that page from the list. This also helped if the page I was on used redirects to get me there. Most of us have had the issue where we hit the back button, which takes us back to the redirect page, which then sends us right back to the page we were just on. Now I could choose the page I wanted right from the list. AMAZING!!
Now this feature has either been worked into or already existed in the other 3 browsers, though with IE and Firefox being the two I primarily used, i didn’t notice if Chrome or Safari had the feature. When IE9 came out, the drop down button no longer existed on the screen anymore, and try though I may, I couldn’t find it’s new location. So I bid a sad farewell to the feature, but was happy knowing I still could use it in FireFox.
I have recently acquired a tablet and through it’s utilization I have gotten used to the idea of a single tap to do an action, and a long press on certain things to get additional options. I decided to take that idea onto my laptop and did a long press on the IE9 back button. There it was, my old friend Recent Pages, hiding behind a long press. I then checked Safari and Chrome and found that they also used the long press on the back button to show recent pages, and with Firefox, the feature was still the small down arrow.
So no matter which of these browsers you choose, this feature is there for you to take advantage of.
This feature I first noticed in IE8 and liked the idea of having a toolbar that had my most used favorites in it. With a click of the “add to favorites bar” button I had a page that I frequented without needing to constantly go into my favorites, or type in the address bar. You can also left click and drag the icon of the web page in the address bar right into the favorites bar to add a shortcut.
All four of the browsers allow you to drag the Page from the address bar. Once the shortcut is there you can right click to rename, delete, and check properties. You can drag the shortcuts around the bar so that they are in the order that you like. My problem was that over time, I added more shortcuts than I had space for.
The other three browsers have a simple solution for this. You can right click on the favorites/bookmark bar and create folders that you can then sort and drop bookmarks into. Each folders acts as a drop-down menu. The problem with IE was that this feature didn’t work the same. Right clicking on the bar only gave the IE menu to turn various bars on and off. IE’s solution is to go to your favorites and select “Organize Favorites”. A new window comes up with your favorites listed, the “Favorites Bar” is in the list as a folder. When you expand that folder, all of your shortcuts in the bar are listed. From here you can right click on the Favorites bar folder and create sub-folders that will show up in the bar. You can then group and arrange the shortcuts as you wish.
So there they are, two features that I use daily to make my browsing experience a little easier, faster, and customized.
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