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This browser extension shows Google Search like it's 1998 all over again

Igor Bonifacic
·Contributing Writer
·1-min read

It safe to say Google Search has changed significantly since the early days of the late 1990s. As the company has diversified its product portfolio, so too has Search become more complicated. Now when you input a query, you don’t just see a list of websites that may include information that’s useful to you. Instead, features like the Knowledge Panel pull you to related Google services. But there’s a way to change that.

The Markup has released a Chrome and Firefox extension called Simple Search. The publication created the plugin to highlight just how frequently Search points people in the direction of another Google service, but you can just as easily use it to get a more classic experience of the platform.

With the extension installed, you’ll see a small window appear above the results page, allowing you to tab through all the websites it brings back, as well as to conduct fresh searches. At any point, you can view the full results page in case you feel it’s more useful. Incidentally, the plugin also works with Bing. If nothing else, Simple Search is a useful history lesson in just how much a service can change over the course of two decades.