Make Google even more useful

14 07 2007

googlegreasemonkey

Ask.com may advertise that they have “The Algorithm,” but Google doesn’t even need to advertise. It always seems to find what you’re looking for in a neat, organized and efficient way, and while I sometimes find myself trying out other engines such as Snap.com, I always end up coming back to Google.

There are a few things, though, that I think could be better. I always thought the ads were a waste of space (what ads aren’t?), and I liked the option to show up to 100 pages per search, but didn’t like the extra load time it came with. Thankfully there’s Greasemonkey to the rescue! Greasemonkey is a Firefox add-on that embeds javascript into a web page, making it configurable. think of it as an app that lets you add extensions to websites themselves, not just your browser.

There are a lot of resources out there explaining what it is, so I wont really go into it. If you want to learn more, Google it.

I do, however want to point out three Greasemonkey scripts that compliment eachother and customize the Google interface to be much more productive.

First, if you haven’t already, install Greasemonkey for Firefox here

The first script is Google Ads Remover+. There’s not much to explain here, this script removes ads from Google searches and other off site Google ads, making Google even cleaner and less cluttered. get it here

The next makes use of that extra space by wrapping around the second half of your search results into another column. there are two scripts that do this depending on how you like it, one is the more popular Two Column Google which comes as regular and in a row-wise version. The second one, which I like better, is called Multi-Column View of Google Search Results. It isn’t Row-wise, but it allows you to switch the number of columns up to 3 by using a keyboard shorcut of alt+1, 2, or 3.

here is what this looks like in action:

google-greasemonkey-google-search-mozilla-firefox-2.jpg

google-greasemonkey-google-search-mozilla-firefox.jpg

The final script autoloads the next page of search results as you scroll down, so you’ll never have to click the “next” button again. It also have an advantage over setting the number of results per page to 100 as it is faster. It is called GoogleAutoPager. The downside is that the two column scripts only work on the first page of results, but that doesn’t really hinder its usability.

Finally, you should have a Google that looks like this:

google-greasemonkey-google-search-mozilla-firefox-3.jpg

Congratulations! Google is even more useful!

There are a lot more scripts available for Google and a ton of other websites at the best place for Greasemonkey scripts: Userscripts.org

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