Tagged: Safari

Add PiP video to any site in Safari

PiPTool
Apple added a Picture-in-Picture (PiP) to Safari a while back. It’s a fantastic feature that places videos from web pages in a separate window that floats over all other windows. The problem is that Apple’s implementation doesn’t work unless the website has implemented it on their end… which most sites haven’t done.

PiPTool to the rescue! This nifty little Safari extensions adds PiP functionality to ANY video on ANY site. All you have to do is go to a page with a video you want to watch, click the PiPTool button in Safari’s toolbar and click on the video you want to be PiP’d. You can resize the window and move it from the top right corner by holding the Command key down while dragging the window.

I’ve been using PiPTool for several weeks and haven’t come across a single site it doesn’t work with.

iOS web browsers: Why bother?

By now you’ve heard the news that Mozilla is finally in testing phase with Firefox for iOS. And you may have noticed that AdBlock (the popular desktop browser extensions) is releasing their own AdBlock Browser as well. Google has Chrome for iOS, and I believe iCab still has a heartbeat.

I have to wonder though, why bother? Until you can change the default browser on iOS; something Apple isn’t likely to allow any time soon, you WILL be using Safari at least once per day whether you want to or not. Simply because nobody is going to want to copy/paste URLs from email or text message just so they can be viewed in a browser other than mobile Safari. And let’s face it, Safari on iOS is a pretty damn good browser experience for 99% of users.

So I’m back to wondering what the ‘end-game’ is for companies that make web browsers for iOS. Why bother?

Safari Search preference

Safari offers default search engine options. Try dropping the Google habit. Just sayin’…

Upgrade your Safari status bar

The very bottom of Safari’s browser window, the Status Bar, by default shows you the web address of the link your mouse is hovering over. Unfortunately this feature doesn’t always work well, and isn’t very informative. Heck, sometimes it doesn’t work at all.

Ultimate Satus Bar is a Safari extension that improves on the built-in status bar in a few ways.

First up is the fact that unlike Safari’s status bar, Ultimate Status Bar only shows up when you hover over a link, saving you around 20 pixels of screen real estate. That’s not a big deal on an iMac, but if you’re surfing on a MacBook Air it can make a big difference.

Ultimate Status Bar for Safari

Ultimate Status Bar places a small Favicon in the corner of the site the link will take you to when possible, as well as an icon for the file type if you happen to be hovering over a downloadable link such as a PDF, TIF, ZIP, etc. And for those downloadable files, it will display the file size if it can be determined – so you can decide if you want to download the file now, or wait until later.

Perhaps the best feature is that short URLs get lengthened and displayed (see the image above). This is not only great for security reasons, but it’ll also help prevent you from getting Rick-Rolled!

Finally, you can customize the appearance of Ultimate Status Bar with the built-in themes.

Ultimate Satus Bar is free, and for the most part works extremely well. I couldn’t get it to display the Favicon for my own site, nor the download size of a ZIP file I hosted (though it was a very large file, so maybe I didn’t wait long enough). But it never failed to show me the link address, expand a short-URL, or hide the bar completely once I moved the mouse.

8 handy Safari keyboard shortcuts I use every day

Apple Safari

  • View current page in Reader – Command + Shift + R
  • Scroll down by one screen – Spacebar
  • Scroll up by one screen – Shift + Spacebar
  • Empty browser cache – Command + Option + E
  • View page source – Command + Option + U
  • Show Reading List – Command + Shift + L
  • Open link in a new tab – Command + Click any link
  • Mail current web page link – Command + Shift + I

These are just my favorite shortcuts, but you can view a full searching for ‘shortcuts’ under Safari’s Help menu.

How to make navigating between Safari tabs suck less

Safari Browser

Here's how to make Safari's tab navigation not suck!

With the release of Mac OS X Lion, I switched back to Safari as my main browser. Almost all the extensions I want are available for it, and it’s much less buggy than Google Chrome was beginning to be. But there are a few things that bother me about Safari, one of which is the way you navigate between open tabs.

With every other browser, you can navigate between open tabs by hitting Command + the tab number (#2 would open the second tab from the left, #3 the third, etc.). But with Safari, hitting Command + a number opens the link number of whatever is in your bookmark bar. Handy if you actually have bookmarks in your bookmark bar, but I have nothing but folders. Hitting Command + Shift + } four times to reach the fifth tab from the left is a pain because it requires both hands.

Thankfully, Olivier Poitrey offers SafariTabSwitching, a SIMBL plugin that brings the Command + number feature to Safari. I’ve been using it so long that I actually forgot where I got it from. It’s quite a nice add-on, and I’ve never had a problem using it. The only foreseeable issue is that it is a SIMBL plugin, which Apple doesn’t condone, and could cease to function at any OS update in the future if Apple so chooses – such as OS X Mountain Lion, due later this summer.

Save space: search with Google from Safari’s URL bar

One of the things I love about Google Chrome and Firefox is the ability to do Google searches using the address bar, rather than being forced to have valuable space taken up with a separate search box in the toolbar. It’s one of those few relatively minor things that kept me from using Safari for quite a while.

Search from the address bar

Search from the address bar in Safari

Apparently I wasn’t alone, because a developer has recently released SafariOmnibar (direct download) for Safari for Snow Leopard and Lion. Run the Package installer and you’re good to go. As you can see in the image above, you’ll have the convenience of a single address/search bar.

Manage and speed-up downloads with Folx downloader (15% off)

Folx Downloader for MacIf you find yourself having to download large files from the Internet on a regular basis, you’ve probably been frustrated with the fact that browsers tend to come to a crawl when downloading them, and downloading more than one can slow your entire system. And if you’re like me, your download folder can become quite unruly with so many files piling up. I sometimes look at the list of files and wonder what some of them even are.

That’s where Folx comes in. Folx is an easy to use download manager that not only speeds up your normal Internet downloads, but also helps you organize your downloaded files, schedules downloads, and even integrates a full Torrent search and download client.

Folx offers a free version, but readers of The Graphic Mac can get 15% off the Pro version by using the following coupon code at checkout time: GRAPH-MAC-15.
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Web browser choices have never been better for Mac users

Popular Mac Browsers

Some of the most popular browsers from Mozilla, Google, Apple, and others

When Apple first released Mac OS X a decade ago, Mac users had little choice in web browsers. There was Microsoft Explorer, and Netscape Navigator, and… well, that was it. Soon after we were treated to a few more options, but nothing like we have today.

With Safari shipping on every Mac, and the world-wide popularity of Mozilla’s Firefox, you would think there wouldn’t be much room for competition in the web browser market. But the options have actually never been better for Mac users. (more…)