This “Floating” Helium Browser Lets You Watch TV at Work

I’ve just discovered the holy grail for TV junkies who want to up their multi-tasking game to include catching up on the latest episodes of House of Cards whilst finessing color-coordinated bar graphs.

This app for Mac OSX, Helium, is a floating browser window that keeps the medium of your choice in the foreground as you work. That means you can scroll through or select any other window or program while the latest bloody episode of Game of Thrones unfolds next to your open spreadsheet. It also has a thoughtful “translucency” mode, when you want to be, you know, slightly less unproductive.

Not that we recommend watching TV at work. But the Helium app has got to be better than the poor office workers in this report, who admitted that they would often take bathroom breaks to watch video, or “most commonly hide a mobile device playing the video underneath a table or desk.”

And of course, watching TV while, say, writing a blog post for Green Label is not the same as watching TV while operating heavy machinery. One news item surfaced in January, of an air traffic controller in Ohio who streamed a whole three minutes of the B-grade Samuel L. Jackson movie he was watching to “every plane in the airspace he was supposed to be monitoring.” Unchill.

Maybe if he had Helium, that wouldn’t have happened (and the people of Cleveland could sleep safer at night).

If, on their daily Swingline stroll your boss has concerns about seeing Arrested Development season two playing next to your overflowing email inbox, you could tell them that Helium is actually a productivity app, since it technically also allows you to stream your Skype or Google Hangouts while you play Pacman against each other online work like an absolute boss on your quarterly reports.

Check out the Helium browser here and get busy staying busy. Or not.

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