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Latest version of Cooliris embraces browser tabs

A new version of the popular Cooliris browser extension lets you keep it open and running in multiple tabs. It's also got a new sharing system that makes it easier to direct people towards content.

Cooliris has just released a new version of its add-on that lets users run multiple instances of its media browsing wall in different tabs of the same browser. Previously, the only way to get it to run like this was to open it in different browsers. This way you can have one tab open to search YouTube videos, another that's browsing online photos, and a third that's playing a TV show off of Cooliris' Hulu.com interface.

Users are only limited in the number of Cooliris tabs they can have by what their computer is capable of. I ran four or five quite easily, and I can't see users needing more than that.

The company is also making it easier to share exactly what you're looking at on your Cooliris wall with others. It now creates a special Cooliris URL for each piece of media you click on. That link takes whoever you send it to, to the Cooliris media wall in the context of however you found that piece of media--that is, if they have the software installed. If they don't, the link won't take them anywhere, something the company says will change in a future iteration that will show a preview or link to the source in some way.

Right now these sharing URLs are quite long, although I'm told an internal shortening service is in the works. This will make it easier to share on places like Twitter and Facebook. This isn't just for users though, it's also for advertisers. These new links give Cooliris another way to track both incoming, and outgoing links. Up until now the company has been doing this internally. With this new system it's letting third party analytics tools like Google and Quantcast aggregate their own metrics.

Right now this new version only works on Firefox (Windows or Mac) and Internet Explorer but it will be headed to Safari users in the near future. Other small changes include a complete redesign of the scroll bar that lets users navigate around the wall of thumbnails. I've compiled this, and some of the other new features in a quick video embedded below: