Meebo is an online Instant Messenger application that allows you to run the application from within your browser. This is perfect for those times when you are traveling and need to use an Internet Cafe, or a locked down PC at work that does not allow you to install applications. I wrote about Meebo previoiusly.
To further integrate Meebo into your browser, Meebo has just released a Firefox extension. This adds a pane to the right side of your browser and lists all of your buddies online. You can also ‘disconnect’ the pane and have it work as if it were a stand alone application.
This is another party I was a little late for. I don’t know how many techies have told me to use Firefox vs. IE due to better security. The issue is that my company is standardized on IE. To the point where certain internal websites will not even run on Firefox.
Now I have discovered the IE tab for Firefox. This is an extension for Firefox. Firefox has hundreds of extensions, or plugins or addons; whichever definition your are more comfortable with. These extensions allow you to add features to Firefox. The whole system is pretty slick. Every time you boot Firefox it automatically checks for updates to Firefox and extensions. If is finds any, it will update them. This is not an Adobe-esqe type of update that takes 10 minutes, but it generally takes about 5-10 seconds. I could do a whole post on Firefox, but for now, I’ll focus on the IE tab.
After you install the IE tab extension you can switch, on the fly, between Firefox and an IE “emulation mode”. You do not need to exit Firefox or run IE at the same time. You just click on the Firefox icon on the lower toolbar and it switches to IE. If you have some sites that you know require IE, like Windows update and, in my case our reporting system. You can add those web sites to a list and Firefox will automatically load the IE emulation when you go to those sites.
Now I can have the security, speed, and flexibility of Firefox and the IE specific requirements when I need them.