Next round in “how I use my computer”, how I read things. Much of what I do on my computer is fundamentally text based (I watch movies, and I do play with graphic design, but at least 80% of my daily use is basically words.)
- Things I read on my computer: Lots of web-based things. A couple of online web-based forums. A lot of blogs. Webcomics.
- Things I mostly don’t read on my computer: ebooks (I generally read those on the iPhone, and sometimes on the iPad). Newspapers/magazines/etc.
Tools I use:
These days, I do most of my web stuff in Chrome, for stability, and because I’m using a number of other Google products, and there are places where the stability/response/etc. is a bit better in Chrome. (It is not uncommon for me to have 15ish GDocs tabs open at once, for example.)
Tabs I usually have open at home include:
- Gmail (I’ll discuss email more in its own post)
- My Dreamwidth circle page
- My LiveJournal reading page
- The reading page for the online project
- And then usually a couple to a couple of dozen other tabs, depending on what I’m doing at the moment.
I do still use Firefox, but mostly for Netflix (which only supports Chrome on PC, not Mac). I do find there’s some benefit in having a separate browser for streaming video – if the browser hangs, or gets cranky if I reload the page after a long idle (pretty common for me: I go through seasons of TV shows, and often leave it paused overnight part way through an episode) it’s easier to quit without worrying about the rest of my tabs/open comments/etc.
I use a small handful of extensions to make my life easier.
- minimalist which removes various elements from Gmail and Google Reader.
- Do Not Track Me – a privacy extension. (I’ve been reasonably happy with it, but I should probably do another round of checking in to see what’s new in that area)
- LJ new comments which makes it easy to browse new comments in threads at both LiveJournal and Dreamwidth. (There’s a good explanation over on the dw_nifty community.) Installing it is a little fiddly: I have the best luck in Chrome installing it in Tampermonkey.
I’m going to talk more about how I manage things in my RSS feeds in its own post, but I’ll note here that I use Instapaper as my first step to keeping links that I want later. My toolbar bookmarks inclue the “Read Later” bookmark for it, plus the “popup with tags” bookmark for Pinboard. For actually managing my RSS feeds, I use Google Reader.