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13 Google Chrome Extensions to Help You Get the Most Out of the Internet

in 2014, Google Chrome surpassed Internet Explorer as the most popular web browser in the United States, and according to color-coded maps created by Dadaviz, by 2015 it had conquered much of the world. But even the biggest browser can be made better with a few personal touches. Here are 13 Google Chrome extensions and add-ons available through the Chrome Web Store to help you get the most out of the Internet.

1. HOVER ZOOM

Hold your mouse cursor over any thumbnail image and Hover Zoom will enlarge the picture for you, no clicking needed. This comes in especially handy when searching for photos or scrolling through your Facebook feed.

2. MAGIC ACTION FOR YOUTUBE

Magic Action beefs up YouTube by adding a number of features, such as auto HD, one-click screenshots, comment blocking, and the ability to control the volume by scrolling with your mouse. It also has a fun “cinema mode” that enlarges the video player and darkens the background, so you can watch your video without distractions (and without switching to fullscreen mode). 

3. ONETAB 

If you can’t keep track of the many, many browser tabs you seem to always have open, then OneTab is the extension for you. It’s a website manager that consolidates all your tabs into one easy-to-manage list that’s readily re-accessible with a single click. And according to OneTab, "Depending on how many scripts are running inside your tabs, moving them to OneTab can also speed up your computer by reducing the CPU load."

4. CHECKER PLUS FOR GMAIL

Checker Plus for Gmail allows users to see new email notifications without opening Gmail in a browser tab or window—the alerts appear in an icon next to your address bar, in whatever tab you're currently using. It also lets users reply, delete, archive, and send new messages from a popup preview window in their current tab, as well as get sound or voice notifications. 

5. GOOGLE CAST 

If you have a Chromecast, then Google Cast is a must. Google Cast lets users stream or cast any website from their computer to their TV via Chromecast and other supportive devices, so you can see that movie, video, or photo album on the big screen.

6. PUSHBULLET

Pushbullet is a handy little extension that connects your web browser with your mobile device. It allows users to send and receive SMS, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Kik messages on your computer without opening or logging into another website. PushBullet also allows users to share links and files between their computer and mobile devices, or with friends and family.

7. SAVE TO POCKET

Pocket is the go-to app for storing longreads you come across at work and want to read on your commute home (or whenever you might have the time). The Pocket extension for Chrome adds a Pocket icon to your address bar, so you can save articles and videos with just one click. Everything you save is then automatically synced across the web and mobile devices through the Pocket app (just remember to open and refresh the app while you still have an Internet connection). 

8. MOMENTUM 

Instead of displaying the list of websites you recently visited when you open a new tab, Momentum gives users useful information like the time, weather, tasks, and to-do lists. It also displays an "inspirational photo" (mostly gorgeous landscape and cityscape shots), instead of a plain, boring blank tab.

9. GOOGLE DICTIONARY 

Google Dictionary is God's gift to students and readers. It allows you to easily look up word definitions and synonyms without searching in a new tab. Just double-click the word, and the definition will appear in a pop-up bubble. 

10. CLICKABLE LINKS 

Clickable Links turns the unclickable text of any URL or email address into an actual link. So if someone were to type "Google.com" in an email message or highlight an un-hyperlinked URL on a webpage, Clickable Links will make the text, well, clickable.

11. GOOGLE HANGOUTS 

Instead of having a separate app or window open, Google created a handy extension for Google Hangouts. Now you can use Gchat or send and receive SMS text messages from any tab on your browser, or straight from your desktop. If you have a Google Voice phone number, you can also use the extension to make phone calls. It’s so convenient!

12. STAYFOCUSED 

StayFocusd limits the amount of time you spend on certain time-sucking websites, so you stay on task—and out of those rabbit holes—your entire work day. You set how much time you can spend on certain sites, and StayFocused gives you the boot when that time is up. For example: You tell StayFocused you can only watch YouTube videos for 15 minutes; so after one viewing of David After Dentist and two complete viewings of Adele's "Hello" music video, you'll be forced to wipe your eyes and finish that project that's due at noon. 

13. NENHANCER

Debating what to watch on Netflix? NEnhancer pulls ratings from Rotten Tomatoes and IMDb and adds them to the movie's description page on Netflix. It also provides links to trailers, has the ability to show and hide rows of movies and TV shows on a page, and launches a pop-out player. It’s one of the best Netflix tricks you aren't using (but should be).

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iStock
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22 Emojis That Look Completely Different on Different Phones
Original image
iStock

Emojis are a great addition to our communication toolbox. Without saying a word, we can talk about people, places, things, and emotions. But different platforms sometimes display the same emoji specification in different ways. An eye roll might come across as petulant or cheerful. A snake might look threatening or adorable. To help you navigate some potentially confusing cross-platform interactions, here are 22 emojis (referred to by their programming code names) that come out with important differences on Apple (iOS 11.1), Google (Android 8), and Samsung (Galaxy S8).

1. FACE WITH ROLLING EYES

3 different face with rolling eyes emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Way to miss the point.
Google: Ugh. Oh boy. Nice one. NOT!
Samsung: Heh, heh. Neato.

2. SNAKE

3 different snake emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Beware!
Google: Beware?
Samsung: Aww. Snakey-poo.

3. NERD FACE

Three different nerd face emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Nerdy cuteness.
Google: Nerdy excitement!
Samsung: Nerdy astonishment!

4. COOKIE

Three different cookie emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Mmm. Delicious chocolate chips…
Google: Raisins? Nuts?
Samsung: Uh, thanks for the cookie?

5. LOUDLY CRYING FACE

Three different loudly crying face emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: River of tears.
Google: Waterfall of tears.
Samsung: Cast adrift on a lake of tears.

6. GHOST

Three different ghost emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Ready for a goofy good scare?!
Google: Me scary! (*wink*)
Samsung: (*clears throat*) Um, boo.

7. COUCH AND LAMP

Three different couch and lamp emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Midcentury modern pad.
Google: Office waiting room.
Samsung: Haunted Victorian hotel.

8. CHIPMUNK

Three different chipmunk emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Cute? No. Please allow me my dignity.
Google: Tee hee. Cute!
Samsung: Where did I put those nuts…

9. OCTOPUS

Three different octopus emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Oh. You surprised me there.
Google: Boo! I surprise YOU!
Samsung: Hellooooooo, over there.

10. CAT FACE

Three different cat emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Always identified more with the mice, actually.
Google: On the internet, everyone loves a cat!
Samsung: Your texts are tedious.

11. PIZZA

Three different pizza emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Pepperoni.
Google: Pepperoni and olives.
Samsung: Pepperoni, olives, and extra cheese.

12. MAN DANCING

Three different man dancing emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung
Apple/Google/Samsung

Apple: Disco in the '70s.
Google: Miami Vice in the '80s.
Samsung: Dabbing, whipping, and nae-naeing at the middle school.

13. OLD MAN

Three different old man emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: More like middle-aged.
Google: Old and yet somehow babyish.
Samsung: Very prematurely grey kid.

14. RUNNING SHOE

Three different running shoe emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Ready for the 5K.
Google: Ready for some stickball.
Samsung: Ready for the playground.

15. DETECTIVE

Three different detective emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Experienced and ready to assist.
Google: No experience yet, but can’t wait to start!
Samsung: Seen too much.

16. PERSON SURFING

Three different person surfing emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Awesome!
Google: Pretty fun.
Samsung: Whoa. Help.

17. FRAMED PICTURE

Three different framed picture emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: For the nursery.
Google: For the den.
Samsung: For the great hall.

18. DROOLING FACE

Three different drooling face emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Sooo delicious…
Google: Sooo incomprehensible…
Samsung: Sooo disturbing…

19. CLAPPING HANDS

Three different clapping emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Pay attention!
Google: Polite applause.
Samsung: Hushed appreciation.

20. T-SHIRT

Three different t-shirt emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Casual Friday at the office.
Google: Saturday at the gym.
Samsung: Sunday on the couch.

21. PERSON FROWNING

Three different person frowning emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Hurt and disappointed.
Google: Crushed and disappointed.
Samsung: Not gonna stand for it anymore.

22. FEARFUL FACE

Three different fearful face emojis from Apple, Google, and Samsung

Apple: Yikes! Aaack! No way!
Google: Oh dear! Why! I feel sick!
Samsung: Bzzzt! Yoinks!

Check the platform differences for all the emojis at Emojipedia.

Original image
Faruk Ateş, Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0
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How a Wall of Lava Lamps Makes the Web a Safer Place
Original image
Faruk Ateş, Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0

A secure internet network relies on bits of data that hackers can’t predict: in other words, random numbers. Randomization is an essential part of every encryption service, but spitting out a meaningless stream of digits isn't as easy as it sounds. Computerized random number generators depend on code, which means it's possible for outside forces to anticipate their output. So instead of turning to high-tech algorithms, one digital security service takes a retro approach to the problem.

As YouTube personality Tom Scott reports in a recent video, the San Francisco headquarters of Cloudflare is home to a wall of lava lamps. Those groovy accessories play a crucial role when it comes to protecting web activity. The floating, liquid wax inside each of them dictates the numbers that make up encryption codes. Cloudflare collects this data by filming the lamps from a wall-mounted camera.

Unlike computer programs, lava lamps act in a way that's impossible to predict. They're not the only secure way to generate randomness (tools used by other Cloudflare offices include a "chaotic pendulum" and a radioactive source), but they may be the prettiest to look at.

[h/t Tom Scott]

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