Google Chrome’s new design not working for you? Do this.

So, this week Google Chrome received a design refresh for its 15th birthday.

Only, I didn’t get it.

Well, I saw the refresh on my work laptop first, and then my own laptop. But even after a complete reinstall of Chrome on my desktop PC, I didn’t see the redesign until I switched them on via the Chrome flags.

Go to chrome://flags/

Then search for ‘Refresh’ and enable the four options:

  • Chrome Refresh 2023
  • Chrome WebUI Refresh 2023
  • Chrome Refresh 2023 New Tab Button
  • Chrome Refresh 2023 Top Chrome Font Style

Restart Chrome and ta-da!

Similarly, if you do have the refresh and don’t want to switch to it yet (understanding that at some point it will be switched on by default), you can always disable these settings for now.

Restoring the classic Trello label colours using Stylish

Screenshot of Trello showing lists of cards with colourful labels
Example Trello board showing the restored classic Trello label colours

I’ve written a Stylish CSS script that restores the classic Trello label colours after they were recently updated to a colour palette that genuinely makes me feel miserable looking at them.

You can use this example Trello board with all the labels to test if the Stylish script is working for you.

Continue reading Restoring the classic Trello label colours using Stylish

Moving back to Mozilla Firefox

Mozilla Firefox with Quantum Dark theme

Back in the days following the browser wars, there was a new browser that rose from the ashes of Netscape: Mozilla Firefox. I was a massive fan when it first launched. I literally bought the t-shirt. And the umbrella.

But like many, sometime after Firefox 3 or 3.5, I was seduced by the simplicity of Google Chrome and I made the switch.

Recently, however, I have become more aware of and concerned about security and privacy, two things that Mozilla have really been putting in the effort to improve in Firefox over the last few years. I’ve also grown more cynical about Google after they removed their “do no evil” clause from their code of conduct in 2018.

This is obviously an opinionated piece, but Mozilla does provide quite a nice comparison of various features of seven of the most popular browsers currently.

So, this week, after 12 years using Chrome almost exclusively, I made the switch back to Mozilla Firefox. From Firefx v3.5 to v89.

I imported my bookmarks from Google Chrome, logged into Firefox on my Android phone and initiated a synchronised relationship between the two. I have installed my favourite plugins/add-ons and have this gorgeous Quantum Dark theme.

I’m going to give it a go for the next month and see how I get on.

So far, I am really impressed.

Observations

Friday 18 June 2021

I thought I would update this post with any observations that I have during this experiment.

I miss the ability to natively group tabs the way that you can now in Google Chrome. I used that a lot to keep certain collections of tabs together.

I also don’t like the way that Firefox renders Gmail—the internal scrollbars are very intrusive. I spent a little while today trying to restyle them using the Stylish plugin but to no avail.

In terms of speed, rendering pages, and general usability: no problems at all. I actually prefer the tabs in Firefox, and I prefer how it displays when you rip off a tab and move it another monitor.

I am getting used to the inspect source code (developer tools) option not being right at the bottom of the context menu in Firefox, as it is in Chrome.

I miss the JoinTabs plugin in Chrome but I found one with a similar functionality (Merge all windows) which works via the right-click context menu rather than a standalone button on the toolbar.

The experiment continues…

Elementary OS Linux on iOTA Flo 11.6″ laptop

Screenshot of iOTA Flo 11.6″ laptop at 1440 × 810 pixels (16:9)

A change this week for my smaller laptop, from Linux Mint to Elementary OS and I couldn’t be happier.

Continue reading Elementary OS Linux on iOTA Flo 11.6″ laptop

Organising tabs by groups in Google Chrome

Four tab groups in Google Chrome

Generally, I am a bit of a tab minimalist when it comes to my browsing habits—I don’t often have more than about five or six tabs open at a time.

At work, however, I am working with two teams (Kronos and Odin) and I was recently looking for a method to neatly group tabs relating to the two teams plus my general work stuff (email, HR system, Jira, Trello, etc.) and personal productivity applications (calendar, email, contacts, task list, etc.)

As I switch between teams quite regularly, I was finding myself taking a little too long to search my various tabs for the right one. Enter Google Chrome’s built-in tab groups. Now everything is much easier to find.

Continue reading Organising tabs by groups in Google Chrome