Thursday, May 1, 2014

What web browser should you use?


For the few of you who don’t know what a “web browser” is, it’s the software application you use to view content on the Internet. If didn’t know that you’re probably using Internet Explorer which came with your PC or Safari with was shipped with your Mac. (If you're using Internet Explorer now, point #2 below is vital for you to read.)

The answer to the question of “What web browser should you use?” is that you should use all of them or at least a few of them. There are a number of reasons that’s true:

1. It’s pretty common for me to be logged into multiple services at the same time. In some cases I’m logged into the same service with two different identities (e.g. I have a few different email accounts with the same service). Rather than log in and out using a single web browser, I stay logged in with one browser (e.g. Firefox) using one identity and a different browser (e.g. Chrome) using the other identity

2. It was just discovered that Internet Explorer versions 6 through 11 have a "bug' that allow someone to take control of your computer if you click on the wrong link that gives this control. Thieves are actively working to take advantage of that bug. Our recommendation is to stop using Internet Explorer until that bug is patched which should be in mid-May. However, if you still have Windows XP, Microsoft is not going to fix the problem so you should permanently stop using Internet Explorer.

3. On rare occasion, I find that a browser isn’t working properly in loading a web page. Rather than immediately restart my computer to see if that will fix it, I log into that web page using a different browser and that will frequently fix the problem.

4. Different browser have different features and by trying them all, I was able to find the one that I like the best and as that as my default browser. By the way, it wasn’t the one shipped with my computer

5. Most of the browsers allow you to improve their capabilities with the addition of “add-ons” or “extensions”. For example, I use “AddBlockPlus” to stop annoying ads in the browser I primarily use but I’ve not added that to another browser because in a few websites, those “annoying ads” aren’t actually annoying but something that I need.

Basically, I’m telling you that having more than one web browser gives you both added flexibility in how you surf the Internet and improves functionality. There are actually many different browsers but the most common ones, in no particular order are Internet Explorer, Safari, Chrome, Firefox, and Opera. You can perform a quick Internet search to find where to download these for your particular operating system.

After you have installed other browsers, I suggest that you search for the most popular “add-ons” or “extensions” for that browser as you should find some tools that really help you. These “add-ons” or “extensions” are somewhat similar to add “apps” to your smart phone.

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