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This chapter is from the book

This chapter is from the book

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 27

WEB TIP

Five Simple Ways to Speed Up Your Web Surfing

Here are a few simple tricks that I guarantee will greatly quicken your Web searching when using Internet Explorer. For many of these tricks to work, you must be using Internet Explorer 6 or later. If you're still using IE 5, download and install Web Accessories for Internet Explorer. You can find a copy at www.microsoft.com/windows/ie/previous/webaccess.

Tip 1:

There's a way to use the best search engine in the world, Google, from the convenience of the IE address box. Just be sure you've installed Web Accessories before implementing this golden trick.

After following these steps, you'll be able to type goo plus a search term in your Address window to perform a Google search, no matter where you are on the Web.

  1. Go to Google and create a bogus search for searchstring.

  2. When the search completes, copy the long URL in the Address window. It should look something like this: http://www.google.com/search?q=searchstring.

  3. Now, click the Quicksearch.exe item in your Links toolbar (again, it'll be there only if you installed Microsoft Web Accessories).

  4. Click the New button.

  5. Type goo in the Shortcut window.

  6. Select Custom URL in the Search windows.

  7. Paste the Google URL into the URL window.

  8. Edit the URL, replacing searchstring with %s.

  9. Click the Try It button to try your custom search. If it works, click OK, and then click Save to add the search to your Quick Search list.

Tip 2:

So, you're reading a Web page about new Toyota cars and want to learn more about a particular model from other sources on the Internet. If you have Web Accessories installed, highlight the word or phrase on which you want to search for more information, right-click the mouse, and choose Web Search. The selected words will immediately be entered into a default search engine. (Microsoft stripped this capability, called Smart Tags, out of IE 6 and Windows XP after considerable criticism. By the time you read this, they'll probably have put it back. It still works with IE5 when you've installed Web Accessories.)

Tip 3:

If you have a very slow Internet connection, you might want to prevent pictures from loading into your browser to speed the page loading process. Open the Links toolbar and choose Toggle Images.exe. No images will load until you run the executable again.

If you don't have Web Accessories installed, you can do the same thing by first choosing Tools, Internet Options, and then clicking on the Advanced tab. Scroll down to the Multimedia portion of the list, and uncheck the Show Pictures box.

You also might want to uncheck Play Animations and Play Video if you suffer from a very slow connection. You can always turn them back on when duty calls.

Tip 4:

It amazes me how many people still type in www, .com, and most ridiculous of all http:// when trying to get to a Web page. In most cases, you don't need to type that extra baggage. For example, if you're going to the TechTV Web site, all you need to do is type TechTV in the address box and press Ctrl+Enter. The http://, www, and .com will be added automatically. This doesn't work for .org, .net, and so on.

Tip 5:

If you have a slow Internet connection and, your intention when logging on is to head straight for a different site, you might consider getting rid of your home page so you don't need to wait for it to load. Go to Tools, Internet Options, and click the Blank button in the Home Page section. Click Apply, and Internet Explorer will load more quickly from then on.

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