Oneupweb : Essential Firefox Add-ons That Will Boost Web Designer and Developer Efficiency

While Internet Explorer is a web developer’s hell, the Firefox Extension library—by contrast—is our heaven. And with 1,099 available add-ons in the Web Development category alone (at the time of post), there’s a good chance that every developer out there can find at least one add-on that will boost the level of efficiency in their workday.

Essential Firefox Add-onsOnce you’ve found an add-on that you’re comfortable using, you tend to stick with it. The following three are my tried and true—and, based on the number of downloads of each, I’m not alone in my thought process:

Firebug

24,845,151 Downloads

What Is It?
Firebug is the greatest front end development add-on ever made! It’s a web design/development tool that allows you to inspect, analyze and edit CSS, HTML and JavaScipt on a web page. And, as a bonus, it can be done on the fly and in real-time. The only feature that could make it better would be the addition of a reliable IE compatibility mode option that would allow the developer to test conditionals and hacks directly in the Firebug admin.

How I Use It:
Mainly for layout inspection and on the fly CSS edits to view real-time results before permanently altering code.

ColorZilla

3,386,197 Downloads

What Is It?
An awesome tool for efficiently stealing (wait, I mean borrowing…) hex and RGB colors from pages. You can snag any color of any element in the browser with a single click to grab the eyedropper tool from your status bar and hovering over any element on the page for a color reading.

How I Use It:
Exactly as it was intended—to snag hex colors.

MeasureIt

1,586,689 Downloads

What Is It?
In simple terms, it’s a browser ruler used to measure pixel width, height or alignment of graphics and page elements. The MeasureIt icon lives in your status bar (by default) and is accessible with a single click—super efficient!

How I Use It:
Okay, I’ll admit it—sometimes, rather than rely on math to accurately determine how many pixels I need to shift an element, I take the lazy way out by using my MeasureIt ruler to grab the approximation of the shift and adjust pixel amounts based on the visual change.

Although I use all three add-ons daily, if I had to choose just one Firefox Add-on to live on forever, Firebug would get my vote—hands down.