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Don't do it: Google releases extension to restore Chrome's old backspace functionality

By Shawn Knight ยท 5 replies
Aug 17, 2016
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  1. When Google announced earlier this year that it would be removing the backspace navigation shortcut in Chrome, two camps quickly developed – those in favor of the move and those vehemently against it. Nevertheless, Google pressed forward and made good on its plans last month with the release of Chrome 52 to the stable channel.

    The chatter never died down, however, which forced the search giant to reevaluate its decision. Should the company backtrack, reintroduce the functionality and tick off the rest of the user base or leave things how they were?

    Fortunately, a third option emerged that should hopefully satisfy all parties involved.

    Google recently released an extension for Chrome called Go Back With Backspace that restores the backspace key as a back navigation button… that is, unless you’re typing text. The description notes that it doesn’t restore the functionality on special pages like in the settings or extensions sections but should otherwise do the trick.

    Google’s decision to remove the functionality in the first place stemmed from users that accidentally pressed the backspace key while working on a project or typing data into a form, thus losing their progress. Essentially, by removing it, Google was trying to protect users from themselves.

    Image credit: aviemil, Shutterstock

    Permalink to story.

  2. Puiu

    Puiu TS Evangelist Posts: 2,403   +875

    Was it really that hard to add a flag or a tick box? releasing it as an extension is insulting. I would have never known about it if techspot didn't write an article.
  3. yRaz

    yRaz TS Evangelist Posts: 2,146   +1,223

    This is one of my host hates features. It happens maybe twice a month, but if I'm typing something and accidently click outside text area I will lose everything in had just types if the website doesn't autosave.
  4. ETF Soldier

    ETF Soldier TS Evangelist Posts: 438   +112

    Why the "Don't Do It:" in the title? Just unnecessary tbh.
  5. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,169   +3,262

    While confusing, I'll assume that is the group they associate this article with, much like the "Weekend Tech Reading:".
    wastedkill likes this.
  6. seefizzle

    seefizzle TS Evangelist Posts: 313   +169

    The backspace button never should have been a navigation button ever at all.
    MonsterZero and Reehahs like this.

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