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In this series on productivity, author Jess Stratton takes you through the latest tools that will help you run your business and life more efficiently. Each installment covers a particular feature or technique in a different online tool, such as Google Apps, Skype, YouTube, Mint.com, Etsy, and more. Check back every Monday for tips on topics from recording and publishing video chats to managing your finances online.
Jess Stratton here and welcome to Monday Productivity Pointers. So, what happens when you finish using a public browser but forgot to start browsing privately? How do you clean up upto yourself for the next person that comes along? Also, what happens if you downloaded files in the meantime? Where do those go? And finally, what happens if I'm on a friend's computer and made an amazon.com purchase using their account? And now every time they log into Amazon, the product that I bought is making recommendations for them on the homepage.
How do I get rid of that? I'll show you how to do all these things, plus some things that you should be doing every single time you've finished up with the public browsing session. The more you do these, the more habit forming they'll become. So, let's get started right away. I've got my Google Chrome browser open right now, and we need to delete the history. We're going to do that by clicking the three lines on the top right hand side, choosing Settings, going up to History and clicking Clear all browsing data. This is going to get rid of browsing history, Cache, Delete cookies. You can check off Passwords, Autofill, Data and Content Licenses if you want.
I don't know how public the computer is or your friends, so you may want to double check before you de-authorize things that they may have forgotten the password on. The important thing here is, the time. You can obliterate the following items from just the past hour or day, week or all time. I actually like to do this every once in a while, clear everything out, just so I know that my browser is working as fast as it's supposed to work. But it's up to you. When you're happy with your choices, select Clear browsing data. I like to close out of the browser and come back in to make sure it really sticks, especially with Google Chrome.
It seems to like restarting, to activate changes. Now, what about another browser? Well, how about Safari? Safari, we can choose Safari and then Preferences from the menu. Go to the Privacy tab and click Remove All Website Data. It doesn't give you a choice of what you want to remove, but you can click one button and remove it all now. The reason I didn't clear out of my cache here, was because I needed to keep an amazon.com window open, because there's one more thing I want to show you. Let's suppose you're not at a public kiosk, but a friend's house.
And you've logged out of your websites, and Facebook and you're not too worried about all the sites you've visited. So, you don't need to clear the cache out. But you've made some purchases from amazon.com and you've downloaded some files. So, where do they go if you want to clear your tracks? Downloaded files always go to the Downloads folder on your computer. On this Mac, I can go to Finder and choose Downloads. From here I can find the file that I downloaded that I no longer want and move it to the Trash. Now what about Amazon? Let's say I've made some Amazon purchases on somebody else's computer, and I don't want them to know what it is or I don't want it getting in the way of any recommended products for them.
Now, I'm on amazon.com on my account on the homepage and I'm going to scroll down and this is where I see all my recommended products. Now, I bought a baby gift, so I'm seeing a lot of things recommended for me. I don't want these here, just as if I bought something on somebody else's account and I don't want them to know what I bought. I don't want my product purchase affecting their recommendations. It's a privacy thing. They don't need to know. We can actually disable this functionality, or just turn it off for that purchase.
Here's the recommendation. On every recommendation, there's a link that says Why Recommend It? I can click this link. And tell Amazon either, why it was recommended, because it was a gift or I can place a check mark beside, Don't use for Recommendations. So, all these other baby products are being recommended for me, because I bought these two things as gifts. So, I'm going to select This was a gift, and Don't use for Recommendations. Close window and now all the recommendations are going to go away, the next time I go to Amazon.
These are the steps you need to take. When you're at a friend's house and you don't feel comfortable removing all of their cache, but you want to get rid of the things that you've done. You want to get rid of Amazon recommendations. And remove all your downloaded files. Also, if you're at a public browser and you forgot to select Private Browsing, don't forget to always remove all website data before you walk away. And, one thing that I like to do, close out of the browser before I'm done. If you can turn it into a habit, the more you can remember to do these, the more habit forming they'll become.
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