FireFox - Making PDFs Easier to Swallow

When it comes to presenting information on the ‘Net PDF files do little but annoy me, fortunately I’m not alone in thinking PDFs in websites suck. I understand that you might need to have a very controlled form that people can print off. Fine, but take me to a HTML page with a link explaining what the PDF is for. And don’t even think about giving me important information in PDF format by default; HTML with a link to a higher quality version maybe. PDF on its own? No way!

Fortunately FireFox has two extensions that make dealing with PDF files much more pleasurable. First up is TargetAlert, an extension that provides clues as to what’s at the other end of a link. If the far end of the link is anything but a webpage TargetAlert will attempt to warn you with an icon. I can’t even imagine how many times it’s saved me the long wait of loading a Word, Excel or PDF document by accident.

Secondly we have the PDF Download extension. This one intercepts any PDF links you click on and allows you to either download it, open it in a new (background) tab, convert it to HTML and show it in another tab or abort the load. I like this extension a lot.