This article was first published on 2008-10-17. Due to the age of this article, it is included here for archive purposes only.
What the heck is that thing?
First off, there’s a name for that little graphic to the left of the web address in your Safari tool bar. It’s called a favicon (which is short for favorites icon
). Website designers create the icon to brand their website in your menus and address bar. But did you know you can put it to good use in Safari?
Quick Tip #1
When I go to type in a new address in Safari’s address bar, I used to click the address 3 times or click and drag over the address to select it. That way I can start typing and it replaces the old address with whatever I type. These days when I use Safari, I just click once on the favicon and the whole existing address is selected. I’m one of those weird people who look for efficiencies anywhere I can, so 1 click versus 3 is a win!
Quick Tip #2
Make bookmarks in the Finder or on your Desktop. To create a temporary bookmark for the website you are on to return to later, drag the favicon to your desktop or an open Finder window. A new icon with the page name will be created wherever you drag it. All you need to do is double click that icon in the future and Safari will open that page back up for you again. I do this a lot when I only want the bookmark for short period, or when I want to store bookmarks in a folder with related files.
Quick Tip #3
Share website addresses via email. You can drag the favicon on to your Mail icon in your dock and a new mail message will open with the web address linked in the body of the email. This is preferable to Mail Link to This Page in Safari’s File menu when you want the subject line left blank.
If you want the link text in your email message to be the name of the page and have the web address hidden, open a new message first then drag the favicon into the body of the message. That way you get Google in your message, not http://www.google.com.
Quick Tip #4
Share website addresses via iChat. Just drag the favicon to an open iChat text field and the link will go in with the page name as the title.
Quick Tip #5
Open the same page in another browser like Firefox. Using Safari, you inevitably reach a site where the lazy site programmers bar Safari. Since I use both Safari and Firefox, I just drag the favicon onto my Firefox icon in my dock and the page instantly opens in Firefox.
Quick Tip #6
Open the web page in another Safari window or another Tab Bar. As you’ve probably noticed by now, dragging the favicon will cause your Mac to create a link in text or open the link if you drag it somewhere that can read web addresses. This goes for Safari itself. So you can drag the favicon into another Safari window and it will open there, or drag it on to another Tab Bar and a new instance of it will open there as well.
Have you discovered any Safari tips to share? Let us know in the Comments section below!