Smart Keywords – Key to Efficiency

You want “Smart Keywords”. I just learned about this last week, and it’s totally awesome. I have a keyword set up for Yahoo Search, so I type “ys honda” into the address bar to initiate a search for Honda on Yahoo Search. Typing “the awesome” returns a THEsaurus entry for Awesome. “dict improvement” returns the dictionary entry for Improvement. The best part of being able to search from the Address Bar is that I can get the cursor to focus on the address bar by pressing Alt-D on the keyword.

Before learning about Smart Keywords (which may be new to the latest Preview Release of Firefox 1.0) I relied on the customizable search box to the right of the address bar. While it has the ability to search just about any source, there’s no way to get there from the keyboard.

Here’s how

Say you search on a lot of different things – corporate phonebook, imdb, etc… wouldn’t it be handy to have convenient aliases to all these searches? You bet it would be.

  1. Go to the page that has the search box on it, right click on it and choose “Add a Keyword for this Search…”
  2. In the “Add Bookmark” dialog that appears enter a name and a short “keyword” and save the Bookmark…

Now you can type “kw search string” in the URL, e.g. “pb Janet Robinson” for a quick phonebook lookup. I can’t live without my keywords. Oh, and it handles POST forms too, unlike most other browsers!

In other words, you can have instant access to any search input field from your keyboard. It’s great.

Hat tip to Ben Goodger at