Recomendo
A compendium of Recomendo
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Productivity

Browser

 

Open last browser tab

Reopen the last browser tab you closed by pressing ctrl + shift + t (Windows) or cmd + shift + t (Mac) — MF

Browser trick

If you type something in the URL bar and then press control + enter, whatever you type will be surrounded by www. and .com. — MF

Lazy read-later tip

Sometimes I open a bunch of links I find interesting and just right click > Bookmark All Tabs, then save them in a folder with the date on it, or topic if they’re all related. I know I’ll get to them eventually. — CD

Google search tips

Type “movies” and your zip code to see what’s playing in theaters near you. Enter a flight number to see the status of the plane. Enter any shipper’s tracking number to see where your package is. — MF

Mute individual tabs

I like to read celebrity gossip for fun, but most of the websites I visit are bloated with ads and videos that automatically start themselves. I recently discovered right click > mute tab on Chrome and Firefox, which makes reading my junk news a little more peaceful, and a lot less annoying. — CD 

Clean up bookmarks bar

I was elated (not an exaggeration) to find out that I could create more room on my Chrome bookmarks bar just by right clicking edit and deleting the text. Now all I have are favicons to click on and my browser looks much neater and and organized. Works on Firefox too, just right click properties. — CD

Save any image you want

My two favorite chrome extensions right now are the Image Downloader and Nimbus. Image Downloader helps me download those annoying images that you can click and zoom on but cannot “save as.” And finally, with Nimbus I can screenshot an entire webpage without having to shrink the size or save as a multi-page PDF. I’m sure they have other abilities, but those two make my life much easier. — CD

Solutions search

When troubleshooting anything my first step is Google/YouTube. But when an initial query does not yield much, I simply add the suffix “solutions” to the query. The terms “problem X + solutions” is more likely to yield sources that have answers, not just the same problem I have. — KK

Search tip

Similar to Kevin’s search tip for troubleshooting, I’ve gotten in the habit of searching for “Things I wish I knew before I started X.” It can help you prepare for your next endeavor and avoid common pitfalls. I did this recently with “Things I wish I knew before I got pregnant,” and I’m so glad I did, because it eased a lot of my fears and makes me appreciate this in-between time. — CD

Save text for later

My current favorite Chrome extension is memomize, which lets you save text for later. Just highlight some text, right click >  Add to memomize, and the next time you open a new tab, what ever you save will be there along with links to its original source. I save subject lines and text from emails and use it as my inbox to-do list. — CD 

Extract images from Google docs

Why can’t I just right-click on a Google Docs image to download it to my computer? Until Google allows that, I’ll use this free add-on called Image Extractor. To install it, scroll down to Method 3 here. — MF

Read only what you want

The Just Read chrome extension blocks pop-ups and makes ad-smothered webpages easy on the eyes. You can select and isolate the text you want to read, delete elements, customize styling and print.  I’ve been using it daily. – CD

Better volume control

If you have a Mac, holding option(alt)—shift while pressing the volume up/down buttons adjusts the volume in quarters. Before I discovered this, I was always toggling between my Mac and media player buttons to find the perfect volume. — CD

Free app finder:

Daily App Advice shows you which paid apps are currently being given away for free in the iTunes App Store. I’ve found many useful free utilities and games here that usually cost between $1 and $10. — MF

Download all images from a website

I have a massive “swipe file” of illustrations from online portfolios. I use them for inspiration when I design or draw something. Owidig is a website that can suck every image file from a website and save it to your computer. It’s easy to use once you get the hang of it, but here’s a good video to get your familiar with it. — MF

Short link tool

If you’re avoiding clicking on a link because it’s shortened or you don’t know or trust the sender, copy and paste the url into WhereGoes.com. It’ll show you the entire path of redirects so you know exactly where it goes. — CD

Your Google activity

I recommend checking out My Activity on Google. I was surprised to find that it also logs searches made on my iPhone. There might be some things you forgot to save, or others you might want to delete, or you might just want to change your settings. — CD

Find similar websites

Part 1: To find websites similar to your favorites, go to google.com and search for related:somesite.com. Example: here are search results for websites similar to Lonely Planet Guides. — CD

Part 2: A couple weeks ago I recommended using “related:url” in your google search bar to find related websites. That’s before I knew the Google Similar Pages chrome extension existed. It does the same thing but quicker. — CD

Easiest way to zoom

I’ve found the easiest way to zoom in and zoom out on my iMac is to hold control while scrolling the wheel on my mouse. I have a bluetooth Magic Mouse which requires enabling a scroll feature (instructions here), and I’m sorry to say I’m not sure if this works on Windows, but it’s worth setting up and so easy once you do. — CD

Sort by reading time

Read Ruler is a must-have if you use Pocket. It sorts all the articles you saved to read later by how long it takes to read. Most of my saves take 5-minutes, so I try to knock them out during my work day when I need a mental break. — CD

Easiest way to search bookmarks

I added my bookmarks to Chrome’s custom search engine and now all I have to do to find something I saved is type “B” into my URL bar and press enter, then I type whatever search terms I want. Here’s how to do it. — CD

ProductivityClaudia Dawson