Keeping track of changes to news feeds, social networking accounts, weather reports and your favorite websites can be a quite difficult as the changes that occur can be numerous and hard to differentiate from previously viewed online content. Diff-IE is an experimental Internet Explorer extension that allows users to keep track of such changes by highlighting the differences that occur to a websites.
In todays time of cutting edge technology, news and blogs are updated with lightening fast speed. Social networking websites are also more robust in providing users with options to interact with friends and family with many simplified methods. Tracking such changes with with accuracy requires a complementary source that works with the same velocity as the changes that occur to the website. Diff-IE enables users to view and compare these changes with previously cached versions of the webpage.
Once Installed, this extension can creates a tool bar on top of the address bar. From here users can modify the settings of the extension according to their requirements.
By clicking on the settings button, users can configure caching options, change the color of the highlighted content and ignore sites from being cached. Enabling caching of pages allows the user to compare images of previously stored pages with the recent changes that occur on a webpage. The user can chose to save some parts or the entire page according to their liking. You can also configure the quality of the image that will be saved for comparison from the general tab in settings. Along with, changing the highlight color that displays the new changes to a webpage and select a threshold above which changes are not highlighted on a website.
The ignore sites tab enables users to add those websites to this list that they do not wish to track changes for. This way users can add exceptions to this extension for specified websites.
The cache tab enables users to view the saved pages and select the number of versions that they wish to store per page. It also displays the cache size on the hard disk and provides user the option to delete the saved data when Internet Explorer history is deleted. This can be done by checking the “clear cache when IE history is deleted” option. Users can also remove selected or all saved pages from this tab.
After you have configured settings and enabled caching you can view, track and compare the changes made to webpages when you visit them. All changes can be differentiated by the highlighted text.
The difference in the webpage can be tracked by clicking on the show/hide diff button from the Diff-IE toolbar. This enables the user to view the page without the highlighted changes. Clicking the button again returns the highlighted text. To ignore any pages from showing the difference in content, users can click on the “Ignore This Website Button” from the toolbar and also load the selected page version in a new tab by clicking on “Load the selected Page Button” (green arrow button).
A side by side comparison can also be achieved by clicking on the Side-By-Side Compare button from the Diff-IE toolbar (the button that displays the magnifying glass). Clicking on this button displays a comparison of the new and cached page in a new window.
Diff-IE is a unique and effective add-on for tracking changes to webpages, however, I do believe that if a user does not wish to track several websites than it can be quite laborious to add several websites to the ignore list and to click on the “Show/Hide Diff’ button to view the pages without the highlighted text. This extension works with Internet Explorer 7, 8 and 9 (beta).