Former CEO of The Next Web. A fan of startups, entrepreneurship, getting things done faster, penning the occasional blog post, taking photos Former CEO of The Next Web. A fan of startups, entrepreneurship, getting things done faster, penning the occasional blog post, taking photos, designing, listening to good music and making lurrrve.
I installed Mozilla/Humanized Firefox extension Ubiquity the moment it was first released. The Firefox extension adds a collection of user-contributed keyboard commands which allow you to perform any number of often time consuming web-based tasks in a matter of seconds; such as inserting a google map into an email, checking your schedule on Google calendar or checking the definition of a word.
As a Quicksilver fanatic (mac app, similar to Windows Launchy), I quickly adjusted to using the extension as often as possible until the moment I installed the Firefox’s beta versions – which killed Ubiquity off temporarily. You can therefore imagine my joy when I discovered a beta version of the latest release Ubiquity 0.1.3 had been posted for download. After a crazy night out celebrating (I kid) I installed the latest release and to my delight, a number of improvements had been made:
First and foremost, the UI. It looks and fells slick and more like the a Quicksilver UI – which is never a bad thing.
You’ll notice by visiting your command-editor (just launch Ubiquity and type command-editor) that you can also change to a couple of alternative UI’s and even create your own (using just a bit of CSS) – so expect a gallery of them to pop up any time soon.
Aside from the UI, there have been a host of other changes to the internal works of Ubiquity as Atul Varma, Ubiquity’s lead developer, explains in a post. These alterations have clearly had a large impact on the speed and reliability of the tool which although useful, felt bloated and slow at its’ first release. Thankfully with the release of the current beta Ubiquity 0.1.3 and the upcoming Ubiquity 0.2, the possibilities are feel endless. Of course, now a few months on, there are an incredible array of useful ubiquity commands out there – my personal favorites being Google Calendar’s “check” command which shows you your schedule for any particular date. I’m also loving the bookmarklet command which lets you turn any bookmarklet into a keyboard shortcut!
For anyone who is interested, particularly the web and Firefox extension developers out there – I highly recommend watching Atul’s video (below) on the upcoming 0.2 release of what is clearly the extension of the year.
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