We’ve all been there, you have so many browser tabs open that you loose work momentum by clicking through tab after tab to find the right one. Well, the developers at Ubuntu had this same problem and used their programming skills to come up with a creative solution that lets you continue using the web apps you know and love but control them remotely from your desktop. From TechCrunch:
A collection of Firefox plugins, Web Apps facilitate new integrations between traditional web-based applications and the Ubuntu Unity desktop environment.
For example, when you browse to GMail, your Firefox browser will alert you that a Web App is available and ask if you’d like to activate it. If you do, you get a GMail icon in your Dash launcher complete with new mail badge indicators. You also get desktop notifications of new mail. You still access GMail through your browser, but GMail activity is better integrated into your overall computing experience.
Another example Web App is for Last.fm, the streaming music service. When you activate the appropriate Web App, you can control your Last.fm stream directly from the Ubuntu volume control widget. The Web App exposes controls to that widget and sends any actions you take to the Last.fm web page behind the scenes. To be clear: you still need to manually load the Last.fm web page, and you’ll need to leave that page in a tab somewhere, but you’ll no longer need to care about that tab once you get your music stream started.
Ubuntu felt it was important to go the plugin route (rather than native or traditional desktop app) because they wanted to preserve the spirit and benefits of a web app, just make it more accessible on the fly.
Goodall reminded me that users like web-based applications because the experience is (usually) the same across all platforms and browsers. Web-based application developers work really hard on their user experience, and Canonical felt no motivation to take away from that effort. Leave the apps in the browser, where they were designed. But integrate with the desktop in ways that make sense.
Read the full article at TechCrunch >>>
I personally don’t like a lot of clutter on my desktop and task bars, so I tend to shy away from too many plugins or widgets, but something like this could make life so much easier. Imagine the time you’d save if you didn’t have to break your train of thought to find the right tab just to change that song you hate (which is half over by the time you find the tab anyway).