I download a ton of audio and video. Samplings from podcasters, video blogs, free MP3s from band Web sites and other random Flash movies and entertainment are all part of my daily searches. I’m in full gathering mode when I’m searching for new media stars. There are plenty of download grabbing tools capable of finding files when I’m in searching based on keywords, but when I find a band Website or cool short films on a site, I don’t want to bother with dozens of right-click save target as operations. Using Magpie in Firefox, I can automatically save all the files of types I specify, like MOV, WMV, MP4, MP3 and WMA by using a keyboard shortcut. Magpie saves me time. It also has a neat trick of downloading all the files in a numbered sequence.
While I make a point of subscribing to most sites via RSS so I don’t need to revisit them, I do still bookmark many sites so I can quickly refer to them when I need the service or information provided. Keeping track of those bookmarks across the several computers in my house is a nightmare. If you have more than one computer, Bookmark Synchronizer is the perfect solution for keeping bookmarks in check. You do need a place to FTP files (your ISP provided Web space works nicely for this).
If you click on a Mailto link, like the feedback link in the sidebar of this site, the browser attempts to open a desktop mail client like Mozilla Thunderbird or Outlook Express. If your primary email account is something like Gmail or Yahoo Mail this doesn’t work so well because you can’t actually send mail. WebMailCompose addresses this by overriding the mailto behavior in Firefox. The default solution is to open Gmail, but you can also use Hotmail, Yahoo and several niche clients.
I’m doing a ton of reading lately, both fiction and non-fiction. It’s a great escape from the hours I spend online. While there are plenty of comparison shopping sites I prefer the immediacy of comparison happening as I’m looking for information on an author or book. Book Burro extends Firefox by providing price comparisons from most of the popular online book sites while I’m looking up the book on any site. Book Burro remains hidden in the background when not in use, dropping down an unobtrusive list of prices from stores when I’m shopping through titles.