Retina display support extended

September 20th, 2015

We’ve been making a series of user interface enhancements to fully support “Retina Displays”, such as those found on the new Apple Macs, and for those of you using 4k or 5k PC monitors.

Please let us know if any of these tweaks adversely affect the readability of your own Protopage, so that we can make any necessary fixes promptly.

Update: We’ve just added a new option to the Colors/Settings menu in Protopage. It’s called “Squeeze lines of text closer together”, and if you tick that checkbox you can now fit more headlines and bookmarks into your widgets.

The issues you may encounter are:

1. The new font we use is very slightly larger than the old font. Therefore, you may prefer to go to the Colors/Settings menu in Protopage to reduce the font size. Alternatively, on modern web browsers you can press Ctrl+ or Ctrl- (Cmd+ or Cmd- on Mac) to change your font size. We’ve also got a new feature in the Protopage Colors/Settings menu called “Squeeze lines of text closer together”.

2. If you use free widget positioning, the new font means your widgets may be slightly taller. Therefore all you need to do is nudge some of the widgets downward on your page so they are not too close together.

3. If you are using the Internet Explorer web browser, you may be using 5-10 year old web browser technology that struggles to display fonts as well as newer versions. Please upgrade to the latest Internet Explorer version for better performance and font display (search for “Upgrade to Internet Explorer 11” on Google). Alternatively, if you would consider switching to a different web browser, the best option that we would highly recommend is that you switch from Internet Explorer to Google Chrome (download from

We know that some of you are using corporate computers and are not allowed or able to upgrade to a modern web browser, and so we are still doing our best to ensure Protopage is as compatible as possible.

If you are using Microsoft Windows, it can make a dramatic improvement in font clarity if you enable “Microsoft ClearType”. For more information, depending on what version of Windows you are using, Google for e.g. “Windows 7 enable cleartype”.

Happy 10th Birthday Protopage! Major new features announced

August 11th, 2015

It’s hard to believe – Protopage is now 10 years old! We launched way back in 2005, and became the most bookmarked web site in the world for several days running (as tracked by “Delicious”). We were also featured in one of the first ever posts written on a brand new “Web 2.0” blog called!

To celebrate, we’ve just released some major new features:

Universal headline import – You can now import news headlines from almost any web site. Previously, we only supported sites that used a technology called ‘RSS’. However, we’ve upgraded Protopage with a kind of ‘artificial intelligence’ that can now automatically detect and bring you headlines from almost any web site.

News feed search engine – Our new search feature means you no longer need to know the URL of the web site from which you would like to receive news headlines. Our new search box will do the work of searching the web and finding relevant news feed widgets for you. (Access the search from the ‘Add widgets’ button at the top of your Protopage).

Protopage for iPad – We’ve developed a special iPad/tablet version of Protopage that will bring you all of your news feeds and podcasts in a much nicer interface tailored specifically for tablets. Access it by going to from your iPad.

And more:
Protopage mobile improvements – we’ve spruced up the browsing experience for the smartphone version of Protopage (access it on your smartphone at
Full HTML5 compatibility – no more Adobe Flash required. This includes a new podcast player with 15 second audio skipping so that you can easily rewind and skip through longer podcasts.
Custom wallpaper upload – You can now directly upload photos from your computer to use as your Protopage background wallpaper. Access this feature by clicking the Colors/Settings button at the top of your Protopage.
Bookmarks A-Z sort – For those of you with large numbers of bookmarks, we have a new ‘sort’ feature accessible from the ‘edit’ menu of your bookmarks widgets.

And finally, here is what Protopage looked like when it was featured on BBC News back in 2005…

Major news feed indexing upgrade

May 26th, 2015

We’ve just completed a major upgrade to our RSS news feed indexing infrastructure, including a new “parsing engine”. This means that some non-standard news feeds that did not work before will most probably work now on your Protopage.

New Podcast Player

April 28th, 2015

We’ve just updated our podcast player. It has a new feature that will allow you to skip forward or backward by 15 seconds, which is particularly useful when skipping through long podcasts. It will also run on modern browsers and tablets without needing to use the old “Adobe Flash” technology.

We’ve also fixed some timezone bugs with the weather widget, and by popular demand we are now reporting the high/low temperature for the current day.

Email inbox widget update

November 21st, 2014

We’ve just updated our Email Inbox widget. By popular demand, you now have the option to choose between displaying all emails or unread emails only. (Please note: existing Gmail users need to edit their widget settings change their inbox type from “Gmail legacy” to “Gmail” to enable this new option).

In addition, we’ve added easy options to set this widget up for those with Gmail, Yahoo, Outlook, Hotmail, Aol and iCloud accounts.

If you are using a different email provider, do a Google search for “IMAP settings” to find out how to configure this widget for your particualar provider. E.g. if you use FastMail, do a Google search for “Fastmail IMAP settings” to find the IMAP settings that you should configure your Email Inbox widget with.

New stock quotes widget

October 4th, 2014

We’ve just released a brand new stock quotes widget to replace the old Yahoo Finance widget.

Click the ‘edit’ button to enter your own list of stocks.

New extended forecast weather widget

October 4th, 2014

We’ve just released a brand new weather widget to replace the old Accuweather weather widget.

Be sure to click the ‘edit’ button on your weather widgets to try the new 4-day, 7-day and hourly forecast modes. Enjoy!

New feature: Mark all as read for widgets

May 21st, 2014

Have you ever wanted to mark all of the headlines inside a widget as read? You can now do this by holding the left mouse button down inside any widget and tapping the “X” key on your keyboard.

If you want to mark all widgets on your page as read, you can hold the left mouse button down in the empty space between two widgets, and tap the “X” key. Every widget on the current tab in your Protopage will be marked as read.

Please note it is important that you keep the mouse button held down while you are tapping the “X” key for this to work. This mark-as-read feature applies to both News Feed widgets and to Twitter widgets.

If you need to reverse this and un-mark any items as read, you can do this for a particular widget or for the entire page by tapping the “S” key instead of the “X” key. Enjoy!

New feature: Headline options

May 21st, 2014

By popular demand, we’ve added some new display options for your news headlines.

To access these options, click the Colors/Settings button at the top of your page, and look in the bottom left of that screen.

You can now “line wrap” your headlines, so that the whole headline will show even if it’s too long to fit inside the widget.

When you click a headline, normally it will turn gray and there will be a line through it. We now have the additional options of either hiding it completely, or leaving it unchanged.

Finally, we now have a specific option to change the size of all news headlines on your page (this setting also applies to twitter headlines and email inbox widget items).

If you have a browser that supports Ctrl/Cmd +/- to change the size of web pages, you may also find that a useful way to change the size of text on your Protopage (i.e. you hold down the Ctrl key and tap the + or – key on your keyboard. On Macs, hold down Cmd instead of Ctrl).

Welcome Google users

October 4th, 2013

Welcome to those of you that are migrating from iGoogle to Protopage this month. For those of you that are not aware, iGoogle is a Google competitor to Protopage that is being shut down by Google in a few week’s time.

We’re very proud to have outlasted our competitors, and have been able to do so because we have not relied on outside investors or venture capitalists to fund our operations.

We built Protopage to meet our own needs and desires for a start page, and we continue to work on the site to add and update features so that Protopage will be here for the long run.

We are a small independent company, and are unique in that we do not rely on the mercy of a large internet company in order to justify our existence.

Thank you to all of our loyal users. As we said when we launched Protopage 8 years ago, we are in this for the long term and we plan to see Protopage around for many decades to come!