Realtime monitoring of the Financial Markets

For those of you interested in the financial markets, we have some good news: with our new Finance widgets you can now follow the financial markets in realtime on your browser’s new tab page. Building on the great tools by TradingView we can now offer you realtime overviews of the Dow Jones, S&P 500 and many other markets (see the list below).

Data and widgets are provided by Trading View.

Following markets are available

  • S&P 500
  • Dow Jones
  • Nasdaq
  • Futsee
  • DAQ
  • CAC40
  • Swiss SMI
  • Nikkei
  • Hang Seng
  • Australia ASX
  • Gold
  • Silver
  • Crude Oil
  • Brent Oil

Adding a Finance widget to your start page

The new widgets can all be found in our Finance widget category. To add one of the widgets, follow these steps:

  1. Go to your start.me page
  2. Click the +icon in the grid to open the Browse Widgets dialog
  3. Search for one of the above mentioned markets or browse through the entire list by selecting the Finance category.
  4. Select the widget/market of your choice and add it to your start.me page

 

Organize your widgets

Currently, start.me houses about 750.000 pages containing about 6 million widgets in total. That means pages on average contain about 8 widgets. Chances are, those widgets need to be reorganized every once in a while. We have supported dragging and dropping of widgets from the start. Today, we made the whole process a little easier still. We introduced a new ‘organize widgets’ mode, that can be activated through a page’s edit menu (see below) or by starting to drag a widget.

Organize widgets mode

In this new ‘organize widgets’ mode, all widgets on the page are showed minimized, giving a good overview. You can drag widgets to new positions and delete them if you want. When you are done organizing the page, just closing the blue notification bar brings you back to the regular layout.

Square and simple

You may have noticed another change, recently: the rounded corners that were visible on widgets, buttons and other parts of the start.me user interface have been removed. Everything is square and simple now. We hope you like this minor change. It is but the first step of a set of new customization features to come soon!

 

Convert Currencies From Your Browser’s Home Page

Do you buy or sell products internationally? If so, you’ll probably find yourself converting money in different currencies frequently.

With the start.me Currency Converter widget, you can now convert money right from your browser’s new tab page. Over 168 world currencies are supported, including: USD, EUR, GBP, YEN and Bitcoin.

Data is provided by Currencylayer, a provider of real-time and reliable reliable exchange rates.

Instructions:

You can find the Currency Converter widget in the widget gallery (click + in grid). After you’ve added it to your page, you can configure the default from/to currency in the widget settings.

 

Available to Premium users only:

This widgets is available only for Premium users. You can upgrade to Premium for just 20USD/annual or 45USD/lifetime. Premium members also enjoy additional benefits, including an ad-free and faster loading experience. Upgrade now!

New: Charts, Google Adsense and Image Gallery widgets

Today we rolled out a couple of new exciting widgets for Premium users. Not a Premium member yet? Go Premium now! It costs less than $2 per month ($20/annual; $45/lifetime).

Charts

Users can now add a chart to their start page that visualizes data from an external data source/application (CSV input).

This widget allows you to stay on top of your most important KPI’s, right from your start page.

Read more about the chart widget here.

Google Adsense

Want to stay on top of your Adsense earnings?

The Google Analytics widgets displays your earnings, impressions and clicks in a chart that is easy to read and understand.

Multiple Adsense widgets can be added to your start.me page, so you can keep track of all your websites on one simple dashboard.

Read more about the Adsense widget here.

Image Gallery

Want to decorate your start page with some beautiful or inspiring images? The Image Gallery widget allows you to display multiple images on your start.me page.

You can choose between a variety of presentation settings, including a slideshow. Read more about the Image Gallery widget here.

Available to Premium users only:

These widgets are available only for Premium users. You can upgrade to Premium for just 20USD/annual or 45USD/lifetime. Premium members also enjoy additional benefits, including an ad-free and faster loading experience. Upgrade now!

New start.me Chrome extension makes bookmarking easier

The new start.me Chrome extension (version 2.1.3) is now available in the Chrome store. What has changed?

New icon
The extension now displays the newly-designed start.me icon.

We simplified adding bookmarks
We replaced the “bookmark window” with a Bookmark Bar. This streamlines the experience of adding bookmarks from the extension with the start.me application. You can use the Bookmark Bar to add bookmarks and RSS feeds with a single click from any webpage.

start.me also remembers the widget you last selected. This makes it easier to save multiple webpages to the same bookmark list.

More options for bookmarking
We’ve added an “Add to start.me” link to the Chrome’s Context menu. This enables you to right-click on any link and save it to your start.me page using the new Bookmarks Bar.

Another way of bookmarking a page is to use the keyboard shortcut ALT-D.

Import your Chrome bookmarks
You can now easily import your Chrome bookmarks into your start.me page by selecting the “Import” option from the Options menu.

Control your new tab page
You can now configure which start.me page you want to see when you open a new tab in your browser. You can now also revert back to the Chrome Default startpage when opening a new tab.

Instant access to your Pages using ALT-S
We’ve also introduced a new shortcut to provide faster access to your start.me pages. Just press ALT-S from any site to open the Pages menu.

Please let us know what you think of the new Chrome extension. Leave your comment below or e-mail us at [email protected].

View your Google Analytics data directly from your browser’s homepage

We have just released a brand new Google Analytics widget that allows you to keep track of your website traffic stats, directly from your start.me page.

The Google Analytics widgets displays your key Google Analytics data in a chart that is easy to read and understand. You can customize the data by selecting from a large number of Metrics and Segments.

Multiple Analytics widgets can be added to your start.me page, so you can keep track of all your Analytics KPI’s from across all your websites on one simple dashboard.

Instructions for adding the Google Analytics widget to your start.me page

1. Click the + sign in the page-grid to add a widget
2. Search for “Analytics”
3. Add the Analytics widget to your page
4. Authorize start.me to access your Analytics data using your Google account
5. Use the Settings dialog to select the Site, Metric and Segment that you want to display

Please let us know what you think of this new Analytics widget, by leaving your comment below or by e-mailing us at [email protected].

Available to Premium users only

Please note: This widget is only available for Premium users. You can upgrade to Premium for just 20USD/annual or 45USD/lifetime. Premium members also enjoy additional benefits, including an ad-free and faster loading experience. Upgrade now!

Interview with Accenture

Last week, Accenture interviewed us about winning the 6th round of the Innovation Awards. The resulting article was published today and might be worth a read! Unfortunately, the article was written in Dutch. Below is an excerpt from the interview, translated to English. For the full text, you could try your luck with the machine translation by Google.

Q: Michiel de Wit, congratulations! With 1,195 votes you are winner of the 6th round of the Audience Award. Not a surprise, given your exciting social media giveaway, right?

A: Well, actually it was! Only a fraction of the people who voted for us, have actually signed up for the raffle. We have set up a giveaway as a kind of compensation, which meant that our voters could win a free month of start.me Premium. We noticed that the majority did not sign up for the giveaway and needed no incentive to vote for us. Someone even said: ” I normally never do this kind of things, but for you I will.” So heartwarming if someone is genuinely happy with your product!

start.me won the 6th round of the AIA16

As you may have heard, start.me has been nominated for the Accenture Innovation Awards 2016. We received a lot of positive feed back and more than 1,200 start.me users took the trouble of voting for us. And with great result: we won the 6th round! This means we will be participating in the finals in October. Thank you very much to everyone who voted (or tried to)! This literally wouldn’t have been possible without you!

Wonderful comments

We would like to share some of the heartwarming comments we received from users who voted:

I never do this stuff, but you guys are great – the site is great – and I think that’s why so many of us have voted!

Just made us smile. And this one, too:

I was with the old iGoogle for many years, then with igHome. Just switched to you and love it: I tell my friends about it!

And one more, just because it made us happy:

Has been taken care of 🙂 I also promote your site regularly on Facebook, because I really enjoy it myself and so I want to share it with others!

Winners

5 start.me users have won a free year of start.me Premium. The winners have received an email to confirm their Premium subscription and a second one to congratulate them. For those of you who would like to get Premium for free, too: just invite your friends. For every friend who starts to use start.me, we will award you with a month Premium for free. Just drop us an email to claim the reward!

Faster pages, HTTP/2 and some more

We have been posting about our efforts to improve the overall speed of start.me before. That’s because we think speed is a very important characteristic of a service you use every day. Today an update on our progress, with some exciting improvements! Furthermore, we added some features and tweaked the look and feel of start.me a little. You will read all about it further down.

Faster bookmarks

Faster bookmark widgets

Of the more than 5 million widgets on start.me, 55% is a bookmark widget. It is fair to say that lists with bookmarks are by far the most commonly used feature. That’s why we worked hard to make those bookmark lists as fast as we could. We went through the code and optimized it quite a bit. The result is that pages with a lot of bookmark widgets should render almost twice as fast! The improvement should be noticeably for everyone, in particular for those of you who use start.me on a smartphone or tablet.

Caching and CloudFlare

To further improve the loading speed of start.me, we added caching. Pages you often visit are stored locally, so that loading will be quicker. You may notice a short loading animation at pages you haven’t visited for a while.

The new loader. You like it?

We started routing all traffic through CloudFlare, which should improve loading performance as well, especially outside of the United States. CloudFlare provides optimizations and caching and at the same time adds some protection against online threats, improving overall security quite a bit.

HTTP/2

With the move to CloudFlare, start.me also gained support for the new HTTP/2 protocol. To many this long-awaited successor to HTTP/1.1 may be all Greek. Originally an ‘invention’ by Google called SPDY (“Speedy”), the new web standard improves loading speed of pages considerably, by using the Internet connection more efficiently. The benefits should be most notable for those with slower Internet connections.

UI Tweaks

After the introduction of our new logo, we made some minor adjustments to the design of start.me to reflect the new colors. You may notice drop down menus now look a little more sophisticated and some shades of blue have changed. Furthermore, the way pages scroll has changed a little: the scrollbar now starts below the top header. And we changed the icon for the page dropdown menu, to make it clearer it can be used to edit the current page.

Some of the UI changes we made

Search box on mobile devices

It took us a while, but finally we can now offer a search box on mobile devices. Because of the smaller screen sizes of smartphones and some tablets, we were not able to fit the (Google) search box in the header of mobile devices. We finally solved this issue my moving the search box below the header, so that on mobile devices too you can easily Google away!

Search box now is available on mobile devices, too

Multi-line bookmark icon titles

The Bookmarks widget received a new setting. When the widget has been switched to the Icon view, you can now choose how much of the bookmark titles is shown. Previously, on the first line would be shown. The new setting, found on the Advanced settings tab of the widget, allows you two show two lines or even the complete title.

Single line vs. Multi line bookmark titles