Part two of a very short “FF2 happy happy joy joy” series, of which part one is right here.
I’m sort of an intermediate customizer–I tend not to use a lot of special hotshot browser addons, etc., so I don’t usually mess with options too much. (OK, except for insisting that pages use my choice of font; I just get so tired of the dreary typefaces that dominate the web).
But with FF2, since the one-click feed subscribe (with Bloglines or your favorite reader–ah, and there’s the real-time spellcheck kicking in, not liking either “Bloglines” or “spellcheck”), I’d already customized the toolbars somewhat–moving the web-search box down to the bookmarks toolbar (along with Gmail, form-fill, search highlight toggle, spellcheck, Google info, and–until I deleted it–the now redundant “Sub with Bloglines”) so that the location bar was wider (I’d already moved PageRank to the navigation toolbar). With the search box more visible, I figured I’d use it more–and that meant customizing the dropdown list.
So here’s my list, after two minutes’ work:
The big four:
- Live Search (formerly MSN Search)
–and I note that FF still calls Ask “AskJeeves,” which is quaint.
- Answers.com, which I have yet to try
- Wikipedia (of course I use Wikipedia)
- Creative Commons
The last two are part of the default list (as is Answers.com–but, curiously, not Ask or Live Search). It’s trivially easy to add a site, assuming the creators want it to be added.
I do try to rotate web searches among the big four. I’m hearing that Live Search (vastly improved over MSN Search) is getting “newer” content (but haven’t attempted to prove that). I like Ask for answering questions directly and for a number of other features. Yahoo! and Google are, of course, Yahoo! and Google, and pretty competitive.
Sure I use Wikipedia. Why wouldn’t I? Not as a definitive answer, but as a great starting point, taken with a couple bushels of salt depending on the topic.
One mild annoyance/curiosity: If I’ve used
Google as the search engine[apparently, any search engine in the dropdown, since it just happened with Worldcat.org], then go to Gmail, Gmail seems to assume that I want to search my mail archive with the
So what’s on your search dropdown? Do you send all your searches to one engine? Have you tried Yahoo! or Live Search lately? (Or Ask, but Sarah Houghton-Jan has already–and correctly–noted that you really should give it a try, and I assume you take her more seriously than you do me.)
Here’s a question: What’s the fifth-place open web search engine?
Now to eliminate a bunch of bookmarks, since those are all redundant…