Custom New Tab (Firefox, Chrome, Safari, IE)

If you browse the internet everyday like I do there are a select group of websites you visit almost everyday, so why not make your new tab page have links to these websites to help you save time? Even if you choose not to use a custom built new tab you can use any website as your new tab.

Why

The easiest way to show you why you should use a custom new tab page is to show you what my homepage and new tab looks like.
My custom start page This is what I see any time I open a new tab or a new window in my browser. As you can see there are three boxes broken down by category, each with their own title and items. Each one of these items is a link to a webpage I commonly use in that category. Above those boxes I put the Arch Linux logo (as Arch Linux is my default OS).

This is just a sample of what you can do. This works by loading a webpage (either local or remote) upon the opening of a new tab or window, meaning you can wield the full force of any HTML, JavaScript, PHP, etc you can normally use in a webpage because it is a webpage. Like I said above, this also means you can use ANY webpage such as Google, or a random Wikipedia page (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Random).

How

  1. Firefox
  2. Chrome
  3. Safari
  4. Internet Explorer

Firefox

1. Download and install the Custom New Tab extension
2. Select the "hamburger" menu in the top right > Add-ons > Extensions
3. Select the "Preferences" option on the Custom New Tab extension and enter your custom new tab URL and choose any other option you want
Custom New Tab extension Preferences After all your preferences are set your custom new tab page should work!
Notice: there is a slight delay if you choose the "Place focus in URL bar" and "Make URL bar empty" options, meaning some of your text will be erased if you start typing before the URL bar is cleared.


Chrome

1. Download and install New Tab Redirect
2. Select the "hamburger" menu in the top right and select "Settings", then select "Extensions" along the left
3. Under "New Tab Redirect" select "Options" and enter your custom URL
New Tab Redirect Options After all your preferences are set your custom new tab page should work!


Safari

In Safari you can simply set your homepage as the new tab page, this is done by going to Safari > Preferences > General, and setting "New tabs open with:" to "Homepage". Safari Preferences After all your preferences are set your custom new tab page should work!


Internet Explorer

Coming 12/01/15
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Why Your "Design Morals" Are Bullshit

I recently read a piece by Mike Monteiro of Dear Design Students called In Praise of the AK-47.

Q: I had a professor in school who went on and on about how well the AK-47 was designed. He stressed that as designers we should be able to appreciate an object’s design on a purely aesthetic level. Do you agree?

A: Fuck no. Fuck him. Fuck the AK-47. Fuck all guns and the people who design them, but especially fuck Mikhail Kalashnikov, the designer of the AK-47.

But let’s look at the argument being made. The AK-47 is often cited as a well-designed object. And this case is usually made by pointing out that the AK-47 is easy to use, maintain, take-apart, modify, and manufacture. It’s a model of simplicity. And the original design, introduced in 1948, is still in use, even as the AK family has continued evolving.

He goes on to say...

You are responsible for what you put into the world. And you are responsible for how what you’ve designed affects the world. Mikhail Kalashnikov is responsible for as many deaths as the people who pulled those triggers.

Mikhail Kalashnikov is responsible for as many deaths as the people who pulled those triggers.

This is bullshit, and I 100% disagree. Mikhail Kalashnikov is not responsible for the deaths of everyone killed by an AK. Designers are free from other people's morals. This isn't to say designers are moral-less human beings, but you do not get to decide if someone's designs are moral or immoral.

And that attempting to separate an object from its function in order to appreciate it for purely aesthetic reasons, or to be impressed by its minimal elegance, is a coward’s way of justifying the death they’ve designed into the world, and the money with which they’re lining their pockets.

We separate aesthetics and function all the time! Classic cars get less miles to the gallon, are harder to drive, and are environmentally unfriendly compared to a Hybrid but no one looks at a Prius and thinks how beautifully designed it is when compared to a 1969 Ford Mustang.

Without sounding too pro-gun, because I do believe the United States needs to take a long hard look at how easy it is to get a gun, the fact is no gun has ever chosen a target. No gun has ever made the decision to kill someone. A gun is a tool, you can take a gun to a shooting range or to a battlefield. It does not care because it cannot care, tools help accomplish a task but a tool cannot will itself into existence without the help of a human being. We are the immoral ones, not the designs we create.

The AK-47 is so simple even a child can use it!

Let's not single out Kalashnikov because the AK-47 is a "dirty gun". The Colt Peacemaker, by all definitions the classic cowboy gun, is a borderline sex symbol in the United States but you never hear anyone say Samuel Colt is responsible for all those deaths. This is because anytime you see a war torn country, or a child soldier, they are carrying an AK-47. This isn't due to how easy it is to use, or how accurate they are (not very), but due to the simple fact that they have been in constant production since 1949 and are abundantly available, if it was an American made Smith & Wesson would they get the same bad wrap as the Kalashnikov? Probably not.

Now don't think I'm some gun nut or some moral-less bastard who believes we should design more efficient ways to kill one another, I just don't believe that designers should be held responsible for how their designs are used.

Is Albert Einstein responsible for the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki due to the Einstein-Szilard letter urging President Roosevelt to start a nuclear weapons program?

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