Top 5 Firefox plugins

I’m almost rabidly in love with Firefox, the little browser that could. In fact the link I’ve just given you has been the *only* place I’ve been to in Internet Exploiter when I’ve installed a fresh copy of Windows on my machine. Of course I use Linux a lot now, so I don’t even have to do that.

Anyway, Firefox is easily extensible through a whole galaxy of plugins. Seriously, there’s almost certainly something in there that will reduce the number of applications you use every day. Before you know it someone will create a Firefox plugin that does away with an operating system. Happy thoughts.

As a web geek I tend to err on the side of development plugins, but I also use some other things as well. Here’s my can’t-live-without-them list of Firefox plugins.

  1. Web developer toolbar by . The guy deserves knighting for creating this wonderful collection of useful tools for web developers. If you ever mess about in HTML then you need this now.
  2. Firebug is to JavaScripters what the Swiss Army knife is to … well, the Swiss Army. You got JavaScript? Firebug will show you what’s happening inside the spaghetti.
  3. Blogging would be much, much harder if it weren’t for Scribefire. This little beauty gives you a blog editor right in your Fox. Want to blog about a page? Just right click and click “Blog this page”. Type your text and publish. Easy.
  4. We all hate adverts, right? Get rid of them with AdBlock Plus. It’s so good, and so unobtrusive, that it took me more than a few minutes to figure out why the adverts I was putting on a clients’ website weren’t showing up for me. Maybe I’m stupid, but maybe AdBlock Plus is clever.
  5. Speaking of clever, Greasemonkey is more clever than a packet of professors. How do I describe it? I’ll have a go: “Hijack any website and make it do what you want it to, all using easy JavaScript”. There. Get it now? Magic.

And some honourable mentions:

YSlow is a brand new tool from the clever people at Yahoo that works inside Firebug (my number 2 above) to help show you how you can speed up your pages. From suggesting content expiry dates (and showing you exactly which items don’t have them) to showing the difference in time between loading a page with an empty and full cache, this is a very useful addition to your Firefox.

If you have kids you’ll want to make sure they are protected online. Glubble does just that, but from within Firefox. Don’t spend your money on some parental filtering program when you can do it all from the magic ‘Fox.