Since the day they introduced the Screen Capture extension for Chromium, my life as a web researcher has become a lot easier. Using its various features (a. Capture Region, b. Capture Visible Content, c. Capture Whole Page), the whole process of storing web pages for offline uses has become very smooth.
While my old habit was to print every web page that I found useful, it was full of pain due to the following reasons:-
1). Very few websites have PRINT stylesheets, making web prints appear pretty ugly and full of useless things.
2). Even though one can delete useless nodes from a web page using extensions like Firebug, the whole process of deleting nodes -> Print Preview -> Delete More Nodes and then take a print out is pretty boring, tiresome and something that eats up way too much time.
3). Even after following the methods mentioned above, often I Print a web page just to realize it looks crap on the paper.
4). The whole process of Saving a Web Page is pretty ugly and most of the time doesn’t render pages correctly when being viewed offline.
So, what’s the solution? A pretty simple one, if you use the Google Chrome or Chromium browsers. Just install the Screen Capture extension, take snapshots (.png is the default format) and use an online or offline OCR application to convert the .png document into your extension of choice (.pdf, .TXT, .DOC, .html, etc.).
Why Google Chrome? Isn’t there a similar extension available for Firefox?
Google Chrome, because the Screen Capture extension for Chromium lets you adjust the selection width and height while the Screengrab extension for Firefox doesn’t. Both of the extensions do capture the whole web page pretty nicely (Screen Capture works better and its interface is slick) but when you decide to choose the Capture Region option, Screengrab doesn’t let you adjust your selection width or height.
How do YOU store online content for offline consumption? If you use the same approach that I use, you’ll find the Ricoh Online OCR widget pretty helpful. Just upload your screenshots and the Ricoh Online OCR widget does all the hard work of converting your document to a desired format. It’s a VERY good document converter and allows you to either download the converted file immediately (no registration required!) or get it emailed to your inbox.