Thursday, July 19, 2012

IE Tab/Internet Explorer Tab Chrome Extension Review

I've been using the IE tab extension for sites that are only formatted to be compatible with IE/FireFox and this particular one is to display web pages within chrome. I don't come across very many sites that have pages where it's necessary but it's good to know that I have the possibility there if I need it and don't need to go searching around while I'm in the middle of something just to read this 1 page or whatever. The only places it's been used by myself is on those consumer opinion surveys. No problems with the actual survey sites themselves but some of their customers business site uses a questionnaire that is not compatible with the chrome browser.

IE Tab has a few options that I think are important to the success of an extension such as this one that has been "A top 10 extension since 2009" which is stated under IT TAB if you look in your settings->tools->extensions->.

  • Auto URL's-automatically uses your IE Tab which is obviously important so your not having to click on the little icon every time the sites you want to use for commonly are used.
  • Auto URL Exceptions-These takes precedence over the Auto URL. Even if you have the same site matching on both lists, anything that is an exception will not trigger the IE Tab
  • Your able to choose which IE to use but by default it will emulates whatever IE exists on your computer.
General options for how to open pop ups, do you want a search box and lastly do you want link enhancement are also available if you choose to opt in.

Overall I think the extension works great for what it's used for. It's been around long enough that it's dependable and trustworthy, you don't have to worry about hundreds of bugs and reporting a bunch of problems etc etc. 

The one thing that I have a problem with is the link enhancement. Personally, I had no idea what it was to begin with and it stayed checked for months that way. There is one of those little question mark circles above it where you can click and your brought to a page that explains everything. 

Basically, link enhancement is where affiliate ad code is added to any link that does not have it already. By doing this the creators are part of a larger group of people who share in revenue profits for any items purchased. It's done blindly so it's not your information at risk that bothers me particularly. I understand that ppl need money to work, especially on projects that are free(free as far as money however, obviously there are other gains by the creation of a great product).  Name recognition, added value to future products etc. Also, it's not as though a person is able to write the code and then just be done with it because of the constant evolution of browsers and technology they are constantly developing updates and tweaking things which take time and as they always say..."time is money". 

I don't think this developer was doing anything malicious and in the explanation page it actually says that it's a common practice but maybe that's what bothers me the most...if it's a common practice and the majority are doing it then how is it I'm just hearing about it now for the first time. So, I have been working my butt off trying to make sure I write quality and helpful posts and if I don't take the time to put an affiliate link from google, amazon, or wherever else BANG now anyone who happens to click on my post and ends up seeing something they like either in an ad or even something I talk about someone else is actually getting paid...and I'm not seeing even a penny of it? 

Just doesn't make sense to me. I do want to say that I never would have been able to really get into this right now if not for the fact that IE Tab options give a link where that full page is dedicated to an explanation that is both very clear and thorough. Again, all in all, no I don't think its a huge deal but I'm just the kind of person who was brought up to be honest, sometimes maybe even a little to honest to a fault but there are always grey areas.

I'd really love to hear what you guys think about all of this? Did you know this was happening and I was just in the dark or is this something that is just recently coming to light? Feel free to leave comments, they are always appreciated and responded to!


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