Archive for May, 2010

Browser Extensions For Developers and Internet Marketers

I'm on the fence when it comes to my favorite browser. I've recently started using chrome much more, due to some bad performance issues in Firefox. Firefox on my 64-bit Windows 7 installed sits and eats memory. I've seen it use nearly 2gb of RAM. This was after it had been open on the computer for a few days, and a restart of the browser fixed the issue. However, I'm not sure why this leak is there. The last time I can remember truly liking Firefox completely was back in the version 1.5 days, and even then there was supposedly a huge memory leak. Back then I didn't notice a memory leak, but these days I do.

It could be that Firefox utilize memory different, and it may be the new way Windows 7 display memory usage. I still see sluggishness. Thus, my move to Chrome. There area a few different things that could have caused the slowness, such as the added extensions in Firefox. After installing about seven extensions in Chrome, however, I see no performance hit. So, I still suspect that there is an issue with the browser itself. Even with all of these woes, it is still better than using IE. I hate that browser. I don't necessarily hate using it, but it is difficult to write web sites that work well in it along with all other browser. It's the odd ball which never works the way I want.

For web development, Javascript is necessary for client-side scripting. However, Javascript is difficult to debug. Luckily, we have the Firebug extension for Firefox. This is the uber-extension for web developers. I've used it quite a lot, so much so that it has become a necessity. I probably couldn't write Javascript without it. There are also other features to this extension, like being able to examine the DOM and such. Internet Explorer has a similar tool set but it's slow and hard to utilize. I would dare say that there are some IE users who installed Firefox just so they can use Firebug. One setback here is that IE's Javascript engine has certain nuances that do not readily show up in Firebug. So, while you can debug a majority of javascript errors with Firebug, it will miss certain IE javascript issues.

The next must-have extension for web development is the Firefox Web Developer extension. It gives you a host of options to example page elements and CSS rules within the page itself. This plugin along with Firebug have saved me TONS of time, while working on websites.

SEO is important to not only marketers but web site developers as well. Getting a site online is one thing. Getting it to show up in search results is another. A couple of excellent extensions for examining the search engine optimization of a site are the Firefox SearchStatus extension and the Chrome SEO extension for Chrome. The Chrome SEO extension is great for getting a brief synapsis of your site's backlinks, pagerank, and indexed pages at various search engines. Neither of these offer a lot of advice for SEO, but they do show some stats to get your started.

These are only a few of the extensions available for Firefox and Chrome. There are many others. They are a good reason to switch from IE. PLEASE DO!

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