Watch Youtube as a pop-up window while working on other stuff

Let’s say you are working on a monotonous task that does not require your full attention, but still requires a hefty amount of time to complete – How do you entertain yourself while doing your job?
Usually, I tend to listen to music while working on some tasks, but I also like the ability to watch videos from time to time. But can you watch a video and continue working on your spreadsheet at the same time?
Well, of course – the most common way is to split screens:
split screen
 
The problem with this method is that a lot of screen-space is being wasted – if you watch a YouTube video, it’s probably ok if the video will be shown on a small part of the screen.
A better solution would be a floating window – but how do you that in Windows?
Here’s the solution:

  • a software called “Turbotop” will allow you to set any open window to be ‘always on top’, thus even if you work on a different application, the window you set to be shown on top, will always remain on top.
  • a shortcut to startup your browser without menus (aka ‘kiosk’ mode) – this will allow you to open YouTube directly in a minimal window, resize it to take a small portion of the screen, and keep it in one of the corners of the screen. Combine this with Turbotop and voila – you can now work on your spreadsheet, and watch Youtube without splitting the screen or hinder your work.

So let’s say you wish to do this trick with YouTube and Chrome:

  1. To open Chrome in ‘kiosk’ mode, create a shortcut with the following properties:
    “C:\Program Files (x86)\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe” –app=http://youtube.com
  2. Download, install and run Turbotop. Then open the Chrome shortcut.
    Choose the Chrome window and enjoy your minimalist floating YouTube video.on top window
  3. I keep the Chrome shortcut as pinned icon in my task-bar, coupled with a ‘play’ button:
    great success
  4. Great Success!
    GREAT_SUCCESS (1)

 

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