Searching is the most basic tool on the Web. And I’m not even talking about Google. Remember when we had to read every word to find a single keyword? I barely do. But I do remember a time when I had to type in the exact keyword I wanted to find or browse a long page in order to find it. That was yesterday.
Sophisticated as they both are, Chrome’s and Firefox’s search options are somewhat lacking (sorry IE, Opera and Safari users, I’m just not one of you). Here are two add-ons that will help you make the most of these browsers’ in-page search option. More importantly, they will help you find what you’re looking for.
After installing efTwo, simply hit the F key twice or F2 to start searching. efTwo is a great enhancer to Chrome’s native search abilities. To start off, you’re not limited to an exact keyword. If you look for “aggregate”, for example, the extension will also highlight aggregator, aggregation and so on.
Another great feature is the ability to highlight multiple keywords on the page. If you type an expression, or even type a word, hit enter and type another word, efTwo will highlight each keyword in a different color. Use the arrow buttons to browse between keywords.
If you’re interested in just one word, click on it in the search box and browse only that keyword. The arrows will change color accordingly, which is pretty awesome. You can also click the small x that appears above the word to get rid it.
When you search for a term in Google, efTwo will automatically highlight those keywords in any page you enter from that search. When you enter a page and browse the keywords, the one you’re on will be highlighted in yellow and the page will automatically scroll down as you go.
efTwo comes with some settings you can configure. Many of the options I mentioned above can be turned off. You can also turn off some of the hotkeys that pop up the search box. Personally, I think the double F hotkey is the best, but Firefox haters might not want to be reminded of it every time they perform a search.
All in all, efTwo is a great addition to Chrome. The only bad thing I can say about it is that it doesn’t exist for Firefox (or any other browser).
Find All [Firefox]
Find All is by no means as impressing as efTwo, but it’s still a pretty useful add-on for Firefox users. After you install it, a button will be added to your Find bar: Find all.
If you hate having to scroll through a long page in search of a word, this add-on is for you. When you search for a keyword, the Find all window will open and display every instance of that keyword on the page, all bunched together.
According to the add-on’s page, clicking on an instance is supposed to bring you to that area of the page. This is what I expected to happen, but unfortunately it didn’t work. It’s still useful to see all your search results together like this, and you can always browse them as usual to find the one you need.
If you don’t like Find All’s appearance, don’t worry. It’s pretty customizable. You can also change some other things, like whether it will be activated on Enter or not.
This is what Find All looked like after I tweaked it a little bit. Much better, isn’t it? Hovering over one of the search results will show you its placing out of the total keywords found.
All in all, this is a cute little add-on, and if it works well for you it’s actually a real find.
Bonus: Find and Replace [Chrome]
If you need to print a webpage but want to change it a bit, or even if you’re just trying to pull a prank, Find and Replace for Chrome is a really handy add-on.
After installing, a new find icon will be added to your Chrome’s add-ons bar on the top right. Click it to find and replace anything on any page.
And watch how easily you can turn this:
Fun, isn’t it?
Surprisingly, I was really hard pressed to find good find enhancers. I thought the add-on market would be swamped with them, but even finding these two wasn’t easy. There are just not that many good ones out there.
I think efTwo is the best find enhancer out there right now, but unfortunately it’s not available for Firefox.
Do you know of any more good extensions that make the in-page search function better? I would be very happy to hear about them in the comments. Believe me, I will!
Image Credit: Shutterstock
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