Most modern laptop LCDs and desktop monitors are extremely wide, which doesn’t make sense when you consider that most Web pages are narrow and intended for portrait-style viewing. Indeed, if you look at this very page, you may notice some unused white space on either side.
Of course, you can always keep a browser open in one window and something else in another: Windows makes it easy to split them into two equal halves.
NiftySplit is a browser extension that brings that idea to Google Chrome–but with an incredibly useful twist. The best way to explain it is to show you how it works.
After installing NiftySplit, head to a site like, oh, PC World. Find a story you want to read, then right-click the link and choose Open as NiftySplit window.
NiftySplit will immediately divide Chrome into two windows: the original on the left and the linked page on the right.
What’s more, links in the original window now work dynamically: click any other link and you’ll immediately see that page open in the right-hand window.
This can save you a ton of back-and-forth page hopping. Sure, you can open any link in a new tab by holding down the Ctrl key when you click it, but that’s not quite the same thing.
Indeed, I think once you give NiftySplit a try, you’ll find it an invaluable addition to your browser. It definitely works best if you have a large, high-resolution display (otherwise you may end up doing a lot of horizontal scrolling), but either way it’s worth a look.
Contributing Editor Rick Broida writes about business and consumer technology. Ask for help with your PC hassles at firstname.lastname@example.org. Sign up to have the Hassle-Free PC newsletter (which is included in the Power Tips newsletter) e-mailed to you each week.