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Browser plugin Cooliris (formerly known as PicLens) has been mentioned Page Preview: Time Saving Browser Add-Ons (Firefox, IE, Flock, Safari) Page Preview: Time Saving Browser Add-Ons (Firefox, IE, Flock, Safari) Read More several times on MakeUseOf but never covered in detail. So for those who are hearing this name for the first time, Cooliris is a plugin which is compatible with Safari, Firefox and Internet Explorer. It prides itself by enhancing your browsing experience when it comes to viewing photos on certain Cooliris-enabled sites (elaborated below) and when watching video clips on YouTube.

Cooliris’ party piece which is really very impressive, is the endless 3D photo wall. Trust me, after using the 3D wall, regular browsing will never suffice again. Suppose you were searching for something on Google Images, only 20 results will be displayed on a page at any time. By using the 3D wall, you can view all of the results at once.

Have a look at the screenshots below: Search results are displayed as a “wall” and by dragging the slider at the bottom of the screen, you can swiftly browse through all of the photos easily.

piclens firefox

cooliris firefox

Clicking on any one will bring up a larger version and a caption (if any). Also, its source will be displayed at the bottom of the photo, along with a link to that page. Next to that, there is an option to send messages to friends if you manage to find anything you’d like to share.

cooliris preview

cooliris internet explorer

If you want to sit back and enjoy all the photos, click on the full-screen slideshow icon at the bottom left-hand side then hit ‘Play’. The slideshow icon will change to one which resembles a 3D wall and clicking on it will bring you back to the wall.

Unfortunately, Cooliris will not work on every site with photos, only certain Cooliris-enabled sites like Flickr, Picasa, Google, DeviantART, Yahoo!, SmugMug, Photobucket, Facebook and MySpace. The next time when you’re browsing through your friend’s photo album on Facebook, hit the Cooliris button and you’ll be instantly rewarded with the photos on the 3D wall – no more clicking on ‘Next’.

Cooliris will also work with videos from YouTube. It arranges the videos as it does with photos. Be warned, browsing YouTube with Cooliris is very addictive since it shows you all the search results next to each other. It’s very tempting to just sit there and watch all of them! Granted, YouTube isn’t the same if you can’t read the comments of others or go through the ‘Related Videos’ – two essential features which is missing from Cooliris.


“3D shopping” was implemented in the latest version of Cooliris. A few of the top online shopping How To Become An Online Power Shopper With The Right Tools How To Become An Online Power Shopper With The Right Tools Read More destinations like Amazon, Macy’s and Walmart have hopped onto the Cooliris bandwagon and provided their patrons with an easier way to browse through their products. Clicking on a product’s photo will reveal its price, a short description and a link to the product’s page.

In my book, Cooliris is a definite keeper. Assuming that your computer has sufficient processing power and memory to allow Cooliris to operate properly, using should be a pleasure.

Cooliris is available as a plugin for Firefox and Safari on Mac OS X; and for Firefox and Internet Explorer on Windows. But that’s not all, Cooliris is now available for the iPhone!

Do let us know how well it works on the iPhone. We’re eager to hear how much Cooliris can improve browsing on a such a small device.

  1. baker
    January 11, 2009 at 4:17 pm

    I use this app about once a week, and besides being a bandwidth/ ram hog it is great


    baker at

  2. Tony Brower
    November 18, 2008 at 10:54 am

    Comment by disconnect "It would be incredible if there was an app out there that displayed your media on your own computer in this manner.. or a media center app vs only online content."

    Absolutely, I*m ready for that app!

    • Jackson
      January 20, 2009 at 7:03 am

      Me too... I don't think it would be that difficult. That's a challenge for the Cooliris developers!

  3. disconnect
    November 7, 2008 at 2:01 am

    It would be incredible if there was an app out there that displayed your media on your own computer in this manner.. or a media center app vs only online content.

  4. xulsolar
    October 30, 2008 at 8:46 pm

    Sadly is not for Linux....but it's an amazing app

  5. Aibek
    October 30, 2008 at 4:38 pm

    Looks awesome!

  6. The Windows Fix
    October 29, 2008 at 5:31 pm

    CoolIris is an amazing application...I should use it more.

  7. Jenny Lum
    October 29, 2008 at 4:24 pm

    Hi Jackson,

    Thank you so much for writing about us! I'm so glad that you are enjoying Cooliris and I hope that you and your readers will continue to enjoy using it!

    Also, just wanted to let you know that we have just released new content in our Discover feature in the Cooliris web client that includes full-length movies and TV episodes (courtesy of Hulu), edgier gossip in "Entertainment News," a finance focus in the "Business" channel, full-reel tech shows in "Sci-Tech," and more viral videos in "Around the Web." Check it out at, and get back to us with any feedback you have!

    Warmest regards,
    Jenny & The Cooliris Team

    • Jackson
      October 29, 2008 at 11:48 pm

      That's awesome!

  8. lynnie
    October 29, 2008 at 3:49 pm

    This is one of my favorite ways to search. You can even search Amazon with it. Now if only we could convince NetFlix to hook-up with Cooliris :)

  9. Chris Knight
    October 29, 2008 at 3:40 pm

    I've been using this for a few days, and it's pretty awesome. The only quirk I've found is that it delays (by half a second) the time for a pop-up window to display (not ads, but requested pop-ups).
    Half a second doesn't sound like much, but it's a bit annoying.

    • Jackson
      October 29, 2008 at 3:45 pm

      Hmm... I suppose its the "transition" from photo to photo? I don't seem to be having this issue.

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