Sunday, March 30, 2008

Tabbed browsing hint

I didn't find Samuel Smith of Wing in the Commonwealth Graves Commission website, but I was reminded of a handy web browser feature and also found a super-handy add on for Firefox.

Like me, you probably spend time searching in genealogical databases. Once you've loaded in your search criteria the list of results pop up, but these generally only give you a summary of the results. Quite often you have to drill down into every result to get the full information in order to see if it is the person you are looking for - for example on the CWCG website you will see their service details on the results screen, but not the contents of the Additional Info field which might give you next of kin or residence.

Most browsers nowadays (Firefox, Safari, even Internet Explorer v7) have tabbed browsing. If you hold down the Ctrl key while clicking on the link, your browser will open the link in a new tab behind the one you are in - this is a quick way to get lots of links opening in the background as you can Ctrl-click your way down the list of results. Once they're open, you can go to the first tab, check for the info you're trying to find, then use Ctrl-W to close that tab if it's not the one you were looking for.

Even easier for Firefox users is the Snap Link add-on - this uses the right mouse button to draw a rectangle over all the links in one go, which then all open in new tabs. This has just saved me heaps of time!


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