Do you think the web is fast? What if I told you that you could make your Internet even faster (as far as productivity is concerned), without having to get a faster Internet connection? It already exists and is waiting for you to use it. What’s this magic potion I’m talking about? A Chrome extension, based on a very popular Firefox extension that hasn’t been getting a lot of love here at MakeUseOf.
FastestWeb is the name of this magic potion. It’s basically FastestHub made for Chrome, which is fantastic because FastestWeb packs a mighty powerful punch when it comes to online productivity. In fact, it’s among one of my must-have extensions for both Firefox and Chrome. That’s an achievement in itself, as I’m extremely picky about my extensions.
Running a good 10 or more extensions may be convenient, but I absolutely hate how much of a hog my browser becomes with all of them enabled. Therefore, I never go past 3 or 4 enabled extensions at a time.
Installation is a cinch. Chrome users can just go here to get the extension (and if you’re a Firefox user reading this, here’s a link for you as well). A simple click or two, and you’re done. Restart your browser if it (*cough* Firefox *cough*) requires it.
All of FastestWeb’s features will initially be hidden, so the best way to discover everything that it can do is by going through the options.
In the General category, you will see that FastestWeb can “linkify” URL addresses that aren’t specifically made into links with HTML formatting. This is very helpful on some sites as you won’t need to copy and paste the URL into your address bar, but simply just click.
It can also add a section to Wikipedia pages for related articles on what you’re currently reading, as well as enable “Endless Pages“, where FastestWeb automatically loads the next page (when it identifies an article split up on multiple pages) and attaches it to the end of the current page, so all you have to do is scroll down.
In the Search Results category, there are a handful of options available to enhance your search results. FastestWeb works extremely well in shopping scenarios, offering similar products, a price comparison bar at the top, and any valid coupons you can use for the site you’re currently on. FastestWeb is worth using even for just these few features.
The last section is labeled Popup Bubble, as this section is dedicated to a bubble that appears whenever you highlight text on a website. When the bubble shows up, you can click on different icons (representative of search engines) to search on those sites for the text you highlighted. You can also choose to show definitions if you highlight just one word, as well as other behavioral options related to clicking on items in the bubble.
FastestWeb (and FastestHub, while we’re at it) is a fantastic productivity extension that makes using the Internet easier by at least ten-fold. While that last statement may be an opinionated exaggeration, you can’t deny the fact that it does add a lot of convenience while you browse. The extension is still being actively developed, so I’m very excited to see what other features may be included in the future.
What do you think of FastestWeb? Is it worth installing onto your setup? What other productivity extensions can you recommend? Let us know in the comments!