Plug-ins like Adobe’s Flash, Microsoft’s Silverlight, and Apple’s Quicktime offer a lot of utility on the web, but there are times when you want to browse the web without distraction. Luckily, there is a fairly simple way of turning them off.

First of all, press CMD+, to bring up Safari’s preferences. Next, go to the “Security” tab. You’ll see a row of check boxes — find the “Enable plug-ins” check box under “Web Content.” Now, uncheck that box.

In the same section, you can also choose to just disable Sun’s Java plug-in. This is useful if you get tired of having Java applets slow down your web browsing.

Right under that, you can turn off Javascript from running inside of Safari. This will likely break many of your favorite websites, but there are some very legitimate reasons for turning it off. For example, websites like Snopes.com use Javascript for anti-consumer reasons like disabling text selection. When you turn off Javascript, they lose their death grip over your browser.

I use this menu all of the time in my web browsing, so I hope you find that this tip has some use for you. If you’d like to share your reasons behind turning off plug-ins or Javascript, please comment on this post or hit me up on Twitter.