5 Google Chrome Noteworthy Extensions

I know what you are thinking. Chrome? But we were told not to use it because it sucks up your computer performance and battery life. Ok, it may. But if you are doing a lot of stuff on Google then your still better off to use Chrome since it is Google's browser and their stuff works best where they want it to be. Makes sense, right?

Knowing that, I thought that I'd assemble a list of five extensions that you may want to check out.

1. The Great Tab Suspender
One of the reasons that Chrome sucks up your performance is that users often have a gazillion tabs and windows open. While convenient, each one is putting a load on your system trying to keep the content flowing. That's where The Great Tab Suspender comes in. It allows you to suspend tabs that you haven't been using recently. What makes it different than the one I was using before today is that it does all of it automatically based on an inactivity timeframe you set (from never to 20 seconds to 3 days) and then it will automatically bring them back to life when you click on it. It can also ignore pinned tabs, which includes my Gmail on my system, so that they are always running. It has already helped my computer be much happier with me, so I'm a big fan.

2. Extensity
To go along with the first one, this extension lets you manage what extensions you have running. If you are like me, you likely have a bunch of them that do everything from screenshots to link shortening to color grabbing... the list goes on. But I don't NEED them running all the time. So I use Extensity to turn them on and off without uninstalling them. It makes my computer run better and gets rid of the clutter of icons that often wind up taking over your browser window.

3. TLDR
I like TLDR simply because it's a timesaver. I find an awesome sounding article, but I just don't have the time or patience to read page after page of content. I just want the summary to see if it is worth that time. So I use my TLDR extension to summarize the article in any length I see fit. Then you could always completely geek out and have your Mac read the article to you.

4. Bit.ly
There are several extensions that do the same thing that Bit.ly does, but the basic premise is to take long links and then shorten them into something much easier to write on the board or share with your class. I like Bit.ly because it ties in to my account and lets me track how often the URL is used. I can also customize the URL to be something other than random characters. My one recommendation with it is that the URLs it generates are case sensitive, so your students may mistype it.

5. Google Tone
This one is brand new and has the potential to replace your link shortening in class. Google's latest release was created in a day and uses sound to pass a URL to other computers or mobile devices. The only catch is that all computers need the Google Tone extension for it to work and the broadcasting devices has to have the sound turned on. Then all you'll need to do is click on the Tone extension in Chrome and off it goes! Twitter is buzzing about it already. I'd love to see if it works with a classroom. Google Form to send out? Tone it! News article to share? Tone it! It would make sharing sites so instant and easy if it works with big groups. It looks awesome!

That's it! There are lots of other extensions of note, but those are the five I think are worth checking out right now. Do you have a favorite? Share it in the comments and I'll go check it out!

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