From The Tips Box: IM Clients, Firefox Space, Long Articles

From The Tips Box: IM Clients, Firefox Space, Long Articles
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Readers offer their best tips for signing out of IM accounts remotely, getting more vertical space out of Firefox, and getting through long articles on the web.

About the Tips Box: Every day we receive boatloads of great reader tips in our inbox, but for various reasons — maybe they’re a bit too niche, maybe we couldn’t find a good way to present it, or maybe we just couldn’t fit it in — the tip didn’t make the front page. From the Tips Box is where we round up some of our favourites for your buffet-style consumption. Got a tip of your own to share? Email it to tips at

Sign Out of Certain IM Services Remotely

Judacris lets us know that you can sign out of some IM services if you forget:

If you left the house and forgot to sign out of Windows Live Messenger or any IM service, and don’t want your IM buddies wondering why you haven’t responded to them when you’re clearly “online”, simply sign in onto the same service on your smartphone using an app like eBuddy. You’ll be logged out of the account at home, and you can log yourself out of eBuddy if you don’t want to stay online.

Windows Live Messenger and AIM are the only ones I know of that do this (AIM won’t sign you out immediately, but it will give you the option of doing so when you sign on). There might be others. As far as I know, Google Talk is not one of them.

Get The Most Vertical Space Out of Firefox’s Toolbar

Unsatisfied with just moving icons to Firefox’s tab bar, wilbot discovers you can move just about anything on Firefox’s toolbar:

I think the post Move Firefox Toolbar Icons to the Tab Bar doesn’t go far enough. You can not only move toolbar icons, but also the address bar and search bar. This combines to make the UI only take up 27 pixels vertically – great if you have a widescreen monitor. The address and search bars expand and shrink automatically to fill the space not taken up by the tabs.

(An extra bonus: installing the All-in-One-Sidebar extension and minimising it to the left side gives you one-click access to your bookmarks, history, extensions and downloads without sacrificing screen real estate.)

This gives Firefox a much more IE9 kind of feel. It might be too cramped for most, but probably pretty nice if you’re on a small netbook. Platypus Man also mentions that extension Personal Titlebar performs a similar function.

Save Your Place in Long Articles by Highlighting Text

Dark Reality lets us know how he gets through long web articles:

Here’s a quick tip that will help you if you read long articles. If you have to get up for whatever reason, finish reading the current paragraph, and then double-click the first word of the next paragraph (provided it’s not a hyperlink, or the text is an image, or something). Then get up and go do your thing. When you come back, your eyes will be drawn to the highlighted word. Or you could triple-click and highlight the whole paragraph. It’s simple, yet effective, and should work in any browser, probably in any OS. Pretty sure double-click is universal for “highlight this word”.

Turn Google Reader Feeds into Firefox Live Bookmarks

S_path_23 lets us know how to move RSS feeds from Google Reader to Firefox:

For firefox users: If you click on “show details” in Google Reader, and click on the feed url, you can turn it into a live bookmark. This works for individual feeds, and even folders.


  • Gmail has an option to sign out of all other active sessions, which will take care of any google talk sessions running through the web interface but not anybody signing on via xmpp.

    Secondly: live messenger will sign you out dependent on the client you use, as it now allows multiple sign-on. I know that libpurple clients support the feature (pidgin, adium, meebo, etc) along with the official client/webclient, and more will be picking it up soon…meaning the list of clients you can use to forcibly sign out sessions is shrinking.

    So it half works for google talk and it less-than-half-works for WLM. The only protocol you can rely on being able to sign out remote sessions is aim, it seems.

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