David Madore's WebLog: Bonus links

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(Wednesday)

Bonus links

The previous entry was written yesterday but I forgot to commit it, so it only appears on this 'blog today.

To make up for this little bit of forgetfulness on my part, I have a little gift for Mozilla users: this Google search link, which can be used in many ways. If you just click on it, it will prompt for search terms to be sent to Google; but if you have a word selected, it will search for that (note that you can also achieve the same by selecting the word, right-clicking to open the context menu, and choosing “Web search for <whatever>”, except that it opens in another window). Even better: if you drag the link to your bookmarks (you can use it from there in the same way), you can add a keyword to the bookmarks (right-click on the bookmark to open the context menu, choose “Porperties” and fill the “Keyword” field), say, “g”, so that just typing “g something” in the URL bar will search for the word in question. Well, there are already dozens of ways to search Google using Mozilla, so maybe it's not very useful, but here's a similar Merriam-Webster search: that can be used in the same way—I suggest using “mw” as keyword, and then if you want to learn the definition of a word using Mozilla, just type “mw word” in the URL bar. Combined with the control-L shortcut to clear the URL bar, this is highly useful.

Certain non-Mozilla users can achieve similar results, but the JavaScript might be a little different (use document.selection.createRange().text instead of window.getSelection() under IE, perhaps), and maybe keywords are not available. I don't know. I don't really care, actually.

I learned about this feature from this Mozilla search tips page, and also from seeing similar code for IE; also see the official “documentation” concerning Mozilla keywords / bookmarklets.

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