20125How to read this group without ads across the top of the screen
- Jun 8, 2007Did you know that you can read the Inspiration Group without any ads
across the top of the screen? I'm doing it as we speak. I'm also
looking at the weather forecast along the bottom of my screen and when
John or Sumangali post a message to their blog my blog notifier in my
Mac taskbar along the bottom of the desktop will make a sound and tell
me how many new blog entries are waiting for me to peruse. Also, some
kind of spell check is working right as I type this and there is a red
underline beneath Sumangali's name because she is not recognized. I
just did control click and she is added!
If these features are unfamiliar to you, I will mention them at least
briefly in this post from the perspective of a non-techie with
emphasis on the non. :-)
First you need to be using the Firefox Browser. A browser is a way to
search for information on the Internet. If you own a Mac, your
computer came with the Safari browser installed and if you own a PC,
your computer came with Internet Explorer. There are many other
browsers out there that you can download for free. You would just
search the word Firefox in your current browser. To go directly to a
download page where you can choose type of operating system and
language, follow this link:
This browser downloads extremely quickly and is widely praised. The
Vausedava Server team that manages and runs all the Sri Chinmoy Centre
websites prefers this browser.
One reason why this browser is liked is because of all the add-ons
that easily can be implemented. Everything that I mentioned above such
as removing the banner ad from Yahoo or the weather across the bottom
are add-ons for Firefox. Once you have Firefox installed, open it up
and to get rid of the adds follow the instructions in Priyadarshan's
recent blog entry on this topic.
Also read this blog entry by him to prevent Google from spying on you.
I also added an extension to my Firefox browser called Cooliris. See
more about it at:
This tool creates a little pop up window when you hover over a link.
It will load the page in a small window that you can view and even
visit links within it. I first used it when looking at Meriem's new
photo gallery album at:
I could look at the contents of each album she has created without
even clicking on the link. Welcome Meriem to the Sri Chinmoy Centre
Or if you are looking at a screen of search results in Google, a
common search engine used to find information once using your Firefox
browser, you can quickly see if the site seems promising by just
looking at Cool Iris' popup view of it. Since everyone seems busy and
time on the Internet can be time-consuming this is one way to speed
The other add-on I chose is called CustomizeGoogle. At their site, you
can watch a short video demonstration of it before deciding if you
Its many features are your choice to use or not. Once I added
this feature, Yahoo and Google ads are gone, this spell feature is on,
I can say try my search in ... other browsers right underneath the
Google search bar, and on and on. I only just started using this one
so I am still getting to know it.
Finally, there is RSS. Some say the acronym stands for really simple
syndication. To me it seemed anything but! I am still getting to know
more about RSS but I now realize it is more than just having ticker
screens across your computer telling you the latest news headlines or
stock prices. For the uninitiated like me, if you right clink the RSS
symbol on somebody's blog or website and copy the location to a feed
reader service then you can choose various ways to be notified when a
new post happens without having to click on your bookmarks for that site.
If like me, you don't just intuitively know these so-called really
simple things, a good overview of RSS how-to articles, etc. can be
found on Robert Teeter's blog. He is librarian for a California water
agency. Librarians to the rescue once again for gathering information
in a helpful and succinct manner. This page in his website provides a
good overview of possible links to learn more about RSS:
Now that I have chosen the free RSS feed aggregator called Bloglines,
I get notified whenever a new article posts to the Sri Chinmoy Centre
frontpage or when Sumangali adds a new entry to her blog - just two
examples. Any site that offers their site in XML format can be
monitored in some fashion where you don't have to visit the site
unless something new gets added to it.
Well that's enough for one post don't you think? And if you are on the
fence worried that you aren't a techno savvy Internet user I am here
as testimony that if I can do it anybody can. Most of the time I feel
like I'm running after the bus after it has already left the station
as far as this stuff is concerned. Until I knew that you needed an
aggregator to use RSS, it might as well have been in Cyrillic as far
as this English language speaker was concerned.
Let me know in your next post if you too are liberated from a Yahoo
Personals Ad across the top of your screen while you read the
Inspiration Group. Or perhaps you are just reading the posts as an RSS
feed (you can!) in Bloglines or some other feed reader.
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