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Posts Tagged ‘chrome’

5 Must-Have Chrome Extensions for Journalists

It’s no secret that one of the keys to being a successful journalist these days is mastering the art of combing the Internet. And, a large portion of finding great stuff on the Internet relies on properly and efficiently utilizing clever tools that elevates your online skills from “great” to “practically superhuman.”

Chrome is now the most popular Internet browser, and for plenty of good reason: in addition to having a straightforward search bar and integration with all of Google’s great tools (auto-complete in the browser!), users can customize their web experience with a host of add-ons. These add-ons, called “extensions” by the browser itself, can do amazing things — and boost your reporting abilities to make you more organized, connected, and efficient.

Here are five extensions that are popular for their great utility in any journalist’s arsenal, and they are all absolutely free to download.

What’s your favorite Chrome extension? Let us know in the comments.


Reporters everywhere are singing the praises of OneTab because it beautifully solves one of the biggest pain points for online journalists: the agonizing slow-down of a computer once it crosses its maximum threshold for open browser tabs. If you tend to have dozens and dozens of tabs open at any given time, this extension will speed up your computer without losing all of your hard-earned tabs. Read more

Mediabistro Course

Get a Literary Agent

Get a Literary AgentWork with a publishing consultant to find the right agent for your book and write a query that will get the deal done! Starting December 3, learn the best methods for finding a literary agent, how to choose the right agent for your book, the etiquette of seeking literary representation, and how to stand out among the numerous queries agents receive daily. Register now!

Create Stories From Tweets Using Chirpstory

When news breaks, you can bet that it will hit Twitter first before it is picked up by a mainstream media outlet. But sometimes, pulling together all those tweets in a chronological order can be a real challenge, especially if it has been a day or two since the incident occurred. Luckily, the team over at Japan-based Togetter, Inc. has just the tool for the job — Chirpstory.

Chirpstory Main Page

Creating a story from tweets using the tool is as simple. Once you login with your Twitter account information, you can begin pulling tweets to curate your story. You have the option of either pulling single or multiple tweets directly from your timeline, your mentions, or your favorites. You can also add tweets not in your timeline by searching via keyword, Twitter user, or Twitter list.

Chirpstory Builder Interface

Chirpstory also lets you add multimedia to your story, including videos from YouTube, or photos from Amazon, Flickr,, MobyPicture, Plixi, Twitgoo, or Yfrog. With the click of a button, Chirpstory can automatically arrange your curated tweets in chronological order with the click of a button. Since this curation process does pull directly from the Twitter service, you do have an API limit of 150 requests per hour. Once you’re finished, click the “Create Story” button, and you’re able to add more context to your story, including a title, description, category, and tags.

Chirpstory Modal Interface

Once you’re done, you have a custom Chirpstory page which you can tweet to your followers or embed in any webpage. Each Chirpstory page has a unique URL for linking, and also lets you leave comments which can be sent as tweets, further adding more social media integration to your story. Also, Chirpstory can be used to create useful synopsis posts from Twitter chats centered around a specific hashtag, such as #wjchat.

Chirpstory is free to use and is available at and as a Google Chrome application. Follow the most recently viewed and created stories on their Twitter profile (@chirpstory).

News design trends in Google’s Chrome apps

As a proud recent pilot tester for the Google Chrome Notebook, I’ve switched over to the device as my primary laptop and have thus been consuming more and more news through the web apps in the Google Chrome Web app store.

Because Chrome web apps have yet to be adopted at a mass consumer level, it’s an opportunity for news orgs to experiment with new displays of news without really impacting ad potential or frustrating the standard user. And that’s just what they’re doing — experimenting.

If these apps (which are all accessible from a web browser, even if you don’t have Chrome or the Chrome notebook) are any indicator of where the future of news design is headed, here are the trends I’m noticing:

Grid layouts

Every news app in the Google web store has a drastically different layout from its respective site and iPad app. The most common layout is a grid-style set of tiles which includes headlines, excerpts and photos for various sections or topics, as shown below in the NPR app, Salon app, and New York Times app.

Keyboard shortcuts

Switching amongst stories is intuitive in the Chrome store. It never made much sense from a UX perspective for a user to use the browser’s back button, then find the next story on the list to click in order to go through posts chronologically. Most of the Chrome apps allow you to navigate amongst articles and sections using simple keyboard strokes. Read more