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5 Chrome Extension to Speed Up Your Day

We recently took a look at Firefox browser add-ons that boost productivity. To avoid browser envy, here are 5 Chrome extensions to help speed up your day.

1. Aviary Screen Capture

Like Firefox, Chrome has a version of the Awesome Screenshot add-on, but opt for the Aviary Screen Capture instead for its even more awesome in-browser editing features. Among the editing features is the ability to crop, resize, rotate, markup and add colors. There’s even advanced functionality that provides the option to add layers. Great for capturing and editing images for blog posts and presentations.

2. Bit.ly

For bloggers and just about anyone that engages on Twitter, Facebook and other social media channels, this ubiquitous link shortener browser extension is a must-have. Bitly helps you share, track, and analyze your links and with the Chrome extension you can do just that with one click from within your browser.

3. Rapportive

The Rapportive extension automatically adds a dynamic social sidebar window to your Gmail inbox so you can immediately see what people look like, where they’re based, and what they do. It shows your contacts social networking information from LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and more, often accompanied by a photograph, providing contextual information for follow up conversations.

4. Feedly

Feedly is a Google Chrome extension that displays the latest updates from your favorite blog and website feeds and social media sites like Facebook and Twitter in a magazine-like view. It integrates with Google Reader and other applications.

Feedly is a news reader for creative minds.

Take some time to set up your preferences and let the extension work for you, even suggesting content based on your settings and feeds.

5. Strick Pomodoro

We love the Pomodoro Technique where you set a timer for 25 minutes and work on only one task during that time. No email, Facebook, coffee breaks, or interruptions. You take a break for 5 minutes and then start up again.  This extension enforces the Pomodoro time management technique by blocking distracting sites. Set up a list of domain names (like Facebook and Twitter) to block during work sessions in the options panel, activate the work timer, have a focused work session and stop when the ringing sound effect goes off.

Missing from this list are the many “notifier” extensions that pings you every time a new tweet, email, or update from a host of other applications. I find that push notifications negatively impacts productivity, and instead slows down my day.

Your turn. Which Chrome extensions do you recommend?

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