How To Hide Suggested Video Overlay On YouTube Videos

YouTube allows users to promote their videos by adding suggested videos as overlays on top of the one you’re currently watching. This overlay consists of 2-3 videos and a link to subscribe to the channel you’re watching. Most channels are careful so that the suggested content doesn’t block any part of the video. You can see an example of this by visiting the official channel for SNL where the end of the video has footage that you don’t necessarily need/want to watch and over which the suggested video overlay appears. Not all channels do this though and often a part of a video is obstructed by the suggested video overlay. Here’s how you can hide the overlay.

In order to hide the suggested video overlay on YouTube videos, you need an add-on or an extension that can block web page elements. There are extensions that can do that but the most reliable one is Adblock Plus. The only downside to using this extension is that you’re going to have to run the extension on YouTube i.e. you can no longer include YouTube in your listed of whitelisted apps.

Hide Suggested Video Overlay

Install Adblock Plus in your browser. It’s available for both Chrome and Firefox. Make sure the extension is enabled so that it can block ads on YouTube. Visit a YouTube video that you know shows a video overlay. Play it or skip ahead until the overlay appears, and then pause the video.

Click the Adblock plus icon next to the URL bar, and select Block Element from the menu that opens. Once you click ‘Block Element’ you will be able to select one element to block. Move your mouse cursor over to one of the suggested videos.

A yellow highlight will indicate that it will be selected.

Click it and a new window will open asking to add a new rule. Click Add, and repeat this for all the suggested videos in the overlay. You will need to repeat this step several times as a video overlay has several elements; title, video container, video frame, etc.

If you do it right, you only have to do it once. Block all the elements and you won’t ever see an overlay on any video ever again. Once you’re done, play the video from start to finish and check if any other elements of a suggested video show up on top of the video. If they do, pause it and block the element using Adblock plus.

This should be easier to do; YouTube doesn’t seem to have any rules about showing suggested videos. Anyone can add the overlay and users watching the video can’t even dismiss them.

Read How To Hide Suggested Video Overlay On YouTube Videos by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How To Pause YouTube When You Look Away From Your Screen [Chrome]

Chrome has several experimental features that users can opt into if they want to test out features early. FacePause is a Chrome extension that makes use of an experimental feature in the browser that can detect face movement, among other things. It can automatically pause YouTube when you look away from your screen. It needs to have access to your webcam to work and you obviously need to have a webcam connected to your system in order to use this extension. It makes use of an experimental feature and the extension itself is experimental but that doesn’t mean it’s a train wreck that hardly ever responds. It works great and is very responsive.

Enable Experimental Web Platform Features

Open Chrome and go to the following page.  Enable the Experimental Web Platform Features and relaunch Chrome.

 chrome://flags/#enable-experimental-web-platform-features

Pause YouTube When You Look Away

Next, install FacePause and visit YouTube. At the bottom, you will see a little pop-up with a switch that will enable the extension. When it’s first enabled, you may have to allow Chrome access to your webcam. On first launch, make sure you’re looking directly at your webcam so that it knows what to look for to know if you’re looking at your screen or not.

Once it’s done scanning, it’s ready to use.

Play a YouTube video and any time you look away, it will automatically be paused. This works not just when you look away but if you get up and leave your desk, or bend down to pick up something. The extension can tell when a face is absent, and it can tell when it’s looking at your side profile instead of your front profile.

The extension is very responsive; you won’t have to wait for it to pause the video. Something similar to this has existed for a while except it works with hand gestures. Flutter is a popular app available for both Mac and Windows that can pause YouTube and other media streaming websites and apps if you hold up a hand to the webcam.

Apps like this rely on the webcam to work and understandably, not too many people might be happy with their webcam being on all the time. Many people prefer to keep their cameras covered unless they’re using them. It doesn’t seem like anyone is working on hardware that works specifically to recognize hand gestures or anything like that so webcams are likely going to be the hardware used to implement features like this. They’re futuristic but they require users to trust that their webcams aren’t a security risk.

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How To @ Mention People In Gmail

Gmail has just rolled out (another) new feature as part of its new design. It’s been rolling out feature after feature this month including Nudge and Confidential mode. The newest feature allows you to mention people in an email. It’s not a novel concept if you think about messaging apps like Slack or if you think of social media sites like Twitter. This feature is similar; you can use the @ symbol to mention people in Gmail.

Mention People In Gmail

You need to be running the new Gmail interface in order to mention people in Gmail. You can mention them in the email body.

Open Gmail and click the Compose button to write a new email. Inside the email body, type the @ symbol and then type in the name of whoever it is you want to mention. If you type M, for example, all your contacts that start with the letter M will be listed. Select the contact you want to mention, and a link to their email will be added to the email.

You can only mention people in Gmail for web, and eventually in the mobile apps. If you use a desktop email client like Thunderbird or Outlook, you cannot mention anyone. If you receive an email with someone mentioned in it though, you can click the name and open a new compose window with the email already added in the To field.

The mention feature is just a convenient way to add a mailto: link to an email. If you know a little HTML, you can add it yourself bu this does make it much easier to add, no HTML required.

What’s The Point?

Mentioning someone in an email doesn’t send them the same email. In fact, they never even know they’ve been mentioned in someone’s email. If the person you mention in the email is also one of the recipients, it still won’t make any difference. They don’t get a special email alert about it or anything.

This feature only makes it so that you can click the link to a person’s email and send an email to them. You’re saved the trouble of having to manually enter someone’s email address. If the person mentioned in the email isn’t in your contacts, it makes it all the easier to send an email.

If you actually send an email to the person mentioned in the email, they will be added to your contacts but simply receiving the email isn’t going to do the trick.

Read How To @ Mention People In Gmail by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How To Find Contacts In The New Gmail Web Interface

Gmail has a new design and it’s pretty nice. Generally speaking, whenever a massively popular service undergoes a redesign users are left unhappy. That’s not the case with Gmail; everything looks so much better and there are new features like confidential mode and an offline mode. That said, there’s a small casualty of the new design; Contacts and Tasks. The old design allowed you to switch to contacts, and view and edit them but in the new design, they’re nowhere to be found. Here’s how you can access contacts in the new Gmail.

Contacts In The New Gmail

Google has removed Contacts from Gmail. There is no longer a dedicated panel or screen that lets you access contacts for viewing or editing. That doesn’t mean your contacts are gone. They’re still there and they’re synced with your Google account. It’s accessing them that’s become tricky.

There are two ways to go about this. The first is to just access the contacts synced to your Google account. It has its very own dedicated web page that is independent of Gmail. There are two versions of it; the new Material design that is in Beta, and the old stable version of Google Contacts which is almost identical to what Gmail showed you in the older design. You should bookmark whichever version you want to use. If you don’t use Google Chrome, this  is the best and quickest way to access contacts in the new Gmail.

If you do use Google Chrome, you can use a built-in Google app to access Contacts. It will save you a little space on your Bookmarks bar. Open a new tab in Chrome and click the little grid icon next to your profile picture. A small window will open showing you the different Google apps and services that you can access. Scroll down until you find Contacts, and click it.

Of course if this isn’t convenient for you, and it is obviously less convenient than having access to contacts in Gmail, then you can probably find an extension or add-on for your browser that lets you open Contacts more easily. If you give it a little time, it’s possible someone will eventually develop an add-on/extension that brings contacts back to Gmail in some form.

Google normally doesn’t make such oversights so it’s possible that this was intentional. Gmail is still rolling out new features to users and perhaps, in a few months, it will introduce a way to make it easier to access contact in the new Gmail.

Read How To Find Contacts In The New Gmail Web Interface by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How To Enable Or Disable Nudge In Gmail

Another new Gmail feature has rolled out. Nudge in Gmail is now live for users on the new Gmail design. This feature reminds you to answer emails that have been in your inbox for a while, and to follow up on emails that you sent but never received an answer to. For some users, the feature is also live on the Gmail Android app. iOS users have yet to see it. Here’s how you can enable or disable Nudge in Gmail.

Nudge In Gmail Web

First, make sure you switch over to the new Gmail design. This feature cannot be enabled without it. Once you’ve done that, open Gmail and click the cog wheel button under your profile picture. From the menu, select Settings, and go to the General tab on the Settings page. Scroll down and you will see a section called ‘Nudges’.

There are two options that you can enable; suggest emails to reply to, and suggest emails to follow up on. You can enable either or both of them.

Nudge In Gmail – Android

You need to update the Gmail app to the latest version to enable or disable Nudge in Gmail for Android. Open the Gmail app, and tap the hamburger icon at the top left. In the navigation drawer that opens, scroll all the way down and tap settings. Tap your account (not General Settings). On your account settings screen, scroll down to the Nudge section, and tap it to select which nudge options you want to enable. The Android app offers the same options as the web interface.

There is no ETA on when this feature will be available for iOS users. The nudge feature doesn’t offer much by way of configuration. For example, you cannot select how old an email should be before Gmail nudges you to reply to it or follow up on it. We’re assuming that Gmail is utilizing its algorithm, and also reading the email to figure out which emails need to be replied to and followed up on.

It’s highly unlikely that Gmail will nudge you to reply to newsletters or coupons or emails from Nigerian princes. Likewise, it’s unlikely that Gmail will tell you to reply to an email if the email thread has a particular date for a meeting or a deadline of any sort in the body. It’s going to be smart about it. That said, a few customization options wouldn’t be bad. If nothing else, the ability to blacklist a few emails might come in handy.

Read How To Enable Or Disable Nudge In Gmail by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter