Essential Chrome Extensions 2012

I’ve wrote one essential chrome extensions post almost two years ago. In that time, Chrome has grown up quite a bit, and even changed it’s logo! I’ve also thoroughly groomed my list of Chrome extensions that I often use and want to share them with you now. The list has shrunken quite a bit!

Adblock Plus (Beta) – My favorite extension. Blocks most YouTube and website advertisements. I shouldn’t really mention this, since so many people make their livelihoods online through ads, but I never click on them anyway, and actually disable this extension for a lot of website (but keep it for those sites with extremely intrusive ads…and Facebook).

Auto HD For YouTube – This makes all YouTube videos start playing in HD from the get-go. It also allows the player to auto-widen. Love it.

Better Music for Google Play Music – This allows me to play / pause Google Music if I’m in a different tab…I might be on the verge of deleting it due to omPlayer.

Bookmarked Tabs to the Front – Another favorite extension. I love being able to three-finger-click with my Mac trackpad on something in my Bookmarks Bar and have it open in a new tab and that tab to be front and center. *Ahem* Facebook…

Evernote Web Clipper – I’m starting to really love Evernote…so this extension is really amazing.

Google Dictionary – Double click on a word and the definition pops up. Bam.

Google Voice – Allows me to text people from my browser. Useful when I’m too lazy to deal with my phone’s onscreen keyboard or want to send someone a link.

High Contrast – I think I’ve only used this once but really liked it. It’s apparently a lot better for your eyes at night…

I-AM-STUDYING BLOCKER – Life saver. I’m going to sound crazy…but sometimes when I’m procrastinating on something I habitually click on Facebook for no reason. Sometimes several times a minute. This was a serious problem for me, especially while studying. I merely turn on this extension and it serves to remind me to stop checking Facebook compulsively. Granted, I cheat the included 60 minute time limit by turning it on and off, but it does help.

LastPass – This is essential. Even though I’m dumb and use similar passwords for several sites, it still saves all my usernames and passwords for me and syncs them to the cloud.

Sexy Undo Close Tab – Help if I accidentally closed a tab a few minutes past and need to search for what it was.

Tactical URL Expander – Expands links from URL shortening services automatically so you know where a link is actually going to take you. Messes with some CSS, though (including my tweets on this site top right).


About the Author: Chris Bellman

Sophomore ECE major at The Ohio State University. Technology enthusiast. Runs own IT business in Cincinnati.