The days of using Chrome on Mac are over. Ever since Mavericks came out with Safari 7 in tow, things have changed. You can save a lot of battery if you’re using Safari instead of Chrome (I’ve seen about an hour of increase) and now Safari is just as fast as Chrome and no, it does not crash like it used to in Lion/Mountain Lion. Apple has reworked the entire foundation of Safari and it shows.
So if you’re going to use Safari as your default browser, you’re going to need extensions to make your life easier. Safari has all the usual suspects like Evernote, Pocket, AdBlock etc. So I’ve decided to make this list interesting by not focusing on the obvious, but instead on extensions that solve problems specific to Safari. You’ll also find tools that will actually help you increase your productivity.
If you work from your Mac, you know how easy it is to slip into the endless loop of Facebook and Reddit. You can either go full on George R.R. Martin style and focus just on writing or you can use the WasteNoTime extension. The extension will provide you with detailed analysis of where you’re spending most of your time and by using the Instant Lockdown feature you can block certain time wasting websites when you’re hard at work.
When you get to the end of a multi-page article, the AutoPagerize extension will load the next page for you automatically.
3. Ultimate Status Bar
If you’ve read the Steve Jobs biography, you know that Steve Jobs himself ordered the URL status bar to be taken out. He said it didn’t look good. Steve, if you’re reading this from heaven, I need to tell you something. I like that status bar. Most of my days are spent visiting websites I’ve never heard of (for tech research, of course) and it would be nice to know where I’m headed before I find out it’s a spam site.
Awesome Screenshot is an awesome tool for capturing and sharing screenshots. You can capture and edit screenshots with ease. The extension will even upload the screenshot to its cloud servers and present you with a short link. You can then share it with anyone using social media. On places like Twitter, the image will appear inline like normal images.
You can’t change the default search engine in Safari to DuckDuckGo yet, it’s coming in OS X Yosemite. Till then, install the extension from DuckDuckGo which basically does the same thing. Anything you search from the address bar will open in DuckDuckGo. DDG is a privacy first search engine that does not track you. So if your work requires total anonymity, DDG is the second best to installing Tor Browser.
Upholding my writing tradition, I can’t write a productivity guide without mentioning Markdown once. Markdown Here lets you write Markdown in places where they aren’t supported. If you’ve ever drafted a long email, you know the pain of formatting options. Markdown will make all that easy for you. And yes, it works in Gmail’s web view.
Just write in Markdown, press the extension button to convert Markdown to rich text and sent the mail. The recipient will never know the secret of your well formatted mails.
8. Lazarus: Form Recovery
Bad things can happen anytime. A website where you spent the last 30 minutes filling a form might crash leaving you with sizeable frustration to deal with. Install Lazarus. So even if this happens, you’ll be able to recover and re-enter data easily.
Safari offers extensions for most of the big name web services out there. You’ll find the top extensions from Chrome and Firefox here easily. I’m sure you know about them already, but still, here’s a brief run down.