Browsing social news site Reddit just got a whole lot more complicated—in a good way.
Reddit Enhancement Suite (RES), the third-party browser add-on, launched its newest version yesterday. The suite gives Reddit users far more control over their experience on the site, making it a must-have for both hardcore redditors and casual users.
What makes it so great? The suite’s most basic features—largely unchanged in the latest release—really make browsing Reddit much smoother (and a little prettier).
Usually, for instance, cycling through Reddit’s pages of links is a bit of a chore, as you have to click a “next page” button after every 25 every posts. RES makes the Reddit front page endless. Much like Twitter and Facebook, you can scroll through pages and pages of links, without ever hitting a button.
Even better for the lazy redditor, RES allows you to view images within Reddit, rather than click through to an external site. (Reddit at its core is an link-sharing site, and doesn’t host images.) With a click of a button, every image linked to in a Reddit thread pops open. It’s a phenomenal time-saver and great way to end click-through fatigue.
Those are just the old basics. There’s way more under the hood in the latest release, including an array of tweaks that give hardcore redditors far more control over their experience.
Now, for instance, you can subscribe to individual comment threads, so that whenever someone adds to the discussion a little notification window will pop-up in your browser window.
There’s also a new dashboard feature that allows you to create a kind-of fully customized Reddit homepage. It’s similar to what Web portals like iGoogle did with the Web: Rather than let Reddit sort your interests for you, the RES dashboard lets you pick and choose which communities and even users receive the most prominence in your feed. (For a full list of features—and there are dozens—check here.)
Be forewarned: The release is still a little buggy. I had to reinstall the extension in Google Chrome after I was hit with this obnoxious bug. But to their credit, RES’ creators Steven Sobel and Daniel Allen are responding to bug reports quickly. If you spot something, report it here.
The enhancement suite clocked more than 300,000 downloads yesterday, meaning that most heavy redditors have already installed it. Whether you’re serious about using Reddit or not, it’s worth giving RES a try. It’s free to download.