Waiting for Godot…and Facebook and Google and all those ads…

My iMac has been running slow. Yes, it’s a few years old. So I upgraded from 10.4 to 10.5 (I don’t use an OS till it’s been around for awhile — if I wanted to be a guinea pig I’d eat more carrots).

I immediately lost iDVD and Dreamweaver. But the computer speeded up. Or it did till I upgraded Firefox. Then it slowed a bit again.

But I no longer blame the machine. Instead, I watch the status line as webpages load. First, the page isn’t there yet because it’s loading an ad. Then Facebook so I can “like” it. And a Twitter button so I can share it. And another ad. And another ad. And another ad. Then Google so it can analyze it (and me, though I haven’t even viewed the page yet). Then another ad….

Social networking is ruining my surfing. I make comments only on blogs, and rarely on anything informational. I don’t directly tweet or Facebook status anything from a web page.

I want a button or Firefox setting that loads the page fast, then lets me choose whether I even want networking features.

Because otherwise I’m surfing like it’s 1999.

3 comments to Waiting for Godot…and Facebook and Google and all those ads…

  • This will help, but it all depends on how much you want to get into the guts of your system. You can block your browser from loading all of those ad-servers by using a replacement HOSTS file on your machine.

    In short, when you go to a web page the browser start loading all of the other sites and ad servers attached to it, such as doubleclick, etc – which really slows your browsing experience down, because the page isn’t complete until all the elements that it’s comprised of completely load. So maybe you load my site, but the analytics server is overloaded. That then causes you to have to wait for something that you don’t care much about.

    What to do – get yourself a HOSTS file from http://someonewhocares.org/hosts/mac/ and install it on your machine. This will cause anything in that list to be blocked from being connected to your browsing session. It can cause some unintended side effects and advertisers hate that we do this, but my time is valuable, and every extra 10 seconds adds up.

    For detailed directions on installing the HOSTS files – go here: http://decoding.wordpress.com/2009/04/06/how-to-edit-the-hosts-file-in-mac-os-x-leopard/

    Additionally, there is an alternative to messing with your HOSTS file. You could try out Firefox and the Ad-block Plus add-in. It does quite a bit of what the hosts file does, plus more. Either way will make your web browsing more enjoyable.

  • I agree!! Perhaps we should consider disabling javascript in our browser