To this day some websites insist on splitting their articles across multiple pages. AutoPager, an extension for Firefox and Chrome, loads the next page’s content in the background so you can simply keep scrolling to keep reading. This works not only for articles split across multiple pages; it can also make search results and blogs offer you content in one continuous stream.
Unlike other such extensions, which try to offer one-size-fits-all solutions to the problems of multiple pages, AutoPager is powered by thousands of “rules” contributed by fans of particular websites. There are rules for Google, MakeUseOf and many, many more. Simply put, AutoPager makes reading the web better.
Respect The Rules
AutoPager doesn’t do much of anything on its own; it needs rules. In this way it’s like Greasemonkey, which needs userscripts before it does anything.
So what are rules? They are instructions AutoPager uses to know when to add content to a page, and where to add it. The easiest way to find rules is simple – go to a given site; if it’s supported you’ll see a popup like this:
Very nice, a MakeUseOf reader wrote us a rule. Thanks Diane!
Click the install button and you’ll have the rule installed. There is no need to restart your browser; you should see the results quickly. If not, try refreshing the page.
Not seeing any automatic results? There is a manual search as well:
From here you can browse thousands of rules, so check this out to find if your favorite site is supported. You can visit this search in the plugins menu, or online right now.
Still can’t find a rule for your favorite site? It’s possible to make your own. Curious? Find an interactive tutorial for doing so here. The method they provide doesn’t require any programming, but expect to learn a little bit about how websites work if you want to do this.
AutoPager In Use
So how does this work? It depends on the site. For the most part, though, new results are loaded below you as you browse the content above. For example, you can keep scrolling Google results forever:
This can save you some time as you dig deep into search results. You can also use AutoPager when you’re reading websites, however; even this one:
Scroll to the bottom of the article list and you’ll see more articles listed below. Neat, huh?
MakeUseOf doesn’t split articles into pieces, but some news sites do. This is annoying, so AutoPager corrects this by automatically grabbing content from the next page:
Finally, AutoPager is perfect for blogs or webcomics that feature a lot of short content. Here it is for NotAlwaysRight, a site we once profiled:
You can just keep reading forever. Be careful though. The side effects of using this on hilarious blogs can include procrastination, missing deadlines and possible unemployment.
Read to install Autopager? here are the downloads:
You’ll find downloads for Opera and Safari here, as well. I haven’t tested these, but they should work well.
Autopager is that rare browser extension that can change the way you use the Internet. I plan on installing rules for all the sites I frequent.
What sites are you using AutoPager with? Fill us in in the comments below, along with any tools you prefer to AutoPager.