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So You Think You Can Tech – Browsers

Tech Tuesday

 

Hello and welcome back. Today I’m here to talk about something you might have heard referenced before: Browsers.

What is a Browser?

There are a lot of Browsers out there – Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Safari, Dolphin, Opera, to name a few – regardless of what they are called though, all Browsers are programs/apps that let us access and navigate the internet from our computers and phones. If it helps, think of a Browser in the same way you might think of a car driving down a road, with the road being the internet itself. When we open a Browser that is us getting into the car and starting the engine. Then, when we go somewhere on the internet that is us ‘driving’ to that location.

But what is the right Browser?

What is the right car? For some people the right car is a Mustang roaring down the street while others get by just fine with a little Nissan hatchback. Browsers are the same way; they will all get you to your destination some might be a little faster or have more buttons but there is no real ‘right’ one. Now there are two I can recommend but not because of how ‘right’ they are but because of their added-on benefits; Chrome and Firefox.

Chrome

Built by Google, Chrome is a very popular Browser. This is partly due to Chrome being installed on most Android phones and tablets by default. Chrome runs on the faster side and there are plenty of add-ons you can install to boost your interactions with it. What I find the most useful feature though is not the add-ons but the cloud syncing of bookmarks across all my devices. Remember we spoke before on the cloud, how it is an online storage place. Well one of the things you can store in the cloud is your bookmarks so you can save a page on your phone for later reading online. Since Chrome is a Google product just sign all of your devices into Chrome with the same Gmail address and all your bookmarks are ready to go.

Firefox

If you don’t want big-brother Google watching everything you say and do online, then Firefox from Mozilla might be for you. Like Chrome, Firefox is free and easily downloadable. Firefox also allows you access to a robust number of add-ons. You can also sync your bookmarks across devices via a Firefox account, which is also free. Honestly, the major difference between Firefox and Chrome is that Chrome does track some things for Google that Firefox does not. If you don’t care about that though, use either the one youlike.

Is there a wrong Browser?

Yes. Most assuredly yes. Unless you absolutely have to, never use Internet Explorer. For one thing, it is not a Browser. Another mark against it is Microsoft, the people who made it, advise against using Internet Explorer. Microsoft does not update Internet Explorer, leaving it and you vulnerable to attack. And many sites on the internet are no longer keeping IE in their wheelhouse, making it increasingly antiquated.

Now what?

Good question. For now, you know which Browsers there are and which to not use, that’s a big step in the right direction. There are other things you can learn about, Address Bars, Search Engines, Incognito Mode to name a few. Right now though you have a good base upon which to build. Stay tuned for more posts.

Until then, have fun, find adventure, and stay safe.

Meet the Author

John Carter, Tech Tuesday, Tech TipsHusband, Father, Digital Artist, and Teacher, these are but a few of the hats John Carter wears. If he is not at one of our many public libraries hosting a computer class or helping someone in an appointment you can find John working in his yard practicing hügelkultur, hidden away sketching and writing, making a pilgrimage to Disney World, or trying new recipes in the kitchen.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Jacksonville Public Library