It's too bad that add-ons for Microsoft Outlook haven't caught on with the intensity of Firefox extensions. The good ones can save as much time for office workers who live and breathe by the in-box as a browser extension can enhance the power of your Internet experience. I wouldn't recommend loading up on dozens of Outlook add-ons--they could slow Outlook's performance--but here are three I find useful (and light enough) for daily use.
Xobni With its hint of bubble gum visuals, Xobni is a free Outlook add-on that quickly searches through your e-mail. Just as Xobni's name comes from spelling 'in-box' backwards, so does its search philosophy, which is all about contacts. Finding contacts and message subjects routinely takes a fraction of Outlook's chugging.
Without ever using up more than three-quarters of the reading pane (and often much less when you collapse it,) Xobni can reply, forward, or open a message, or even a file. Its ability to throw in public information scraped from Facebook, Skype, LinkedIn, and Hoovers can add extra context. Dataheads will be intrigued by the stats analyzing your e-mail relationship with the contact, including the rank assigned to your most frequent correspondents. The analytics haven't figured much into my usage, but the Facebook pictures and quick-find searching do. Every day.
Gwabbit I'll admit that I wasn't initially a huge fan of Gwabbit ($19.95), and it showed (I initially called it "weally wame.") Perhaps I was too harsh. This Outlook add-on scours the signature block in an e-mail and creates from it a full contact record in Outlook's address book, going far more in-depth that Outlook does when you attempt to perform the same function by right-clicking a contact's name. Business users who volley e-mail back and forth with unknown recipients will find Gwabbit to be a savvy way to fill in the digital Rolodex.… Read more