[Feature Proposal] Bookmark Wildcards as Replacement for Search Engines



  • I've asked this around before but wanted to open up dicussion some more. What is your stance on supporting bookmark wildcards?

    By that I mean interpreting %s as a variable in a bookmark URL just like it currently happens for search engines. Firefox has them and I think old Opera had them too, not sure about the later though.
    It is a nice feature by itself, but since we already have nicknames or aliases for bookmarks, if we added an additional "search suggest URL" to every bookmarks they could even totally replace search engines altogether.

    As I understand search engine storage is a pain to manage currently, they are hard to come by, and virtually impossible to backup according to this thread.
    This could potentially make storing search engines a lot more predictable, manageable and safe; they would be a lot easier to backup, export and even organize as regular bookmarks into folders; and could potentially simplify address bar input handling (one less thing to account for?), and less alias/nickname conflicts.

    I totally understand this is no small feature and may have far reaching implications, but what do you guys think?
    Is this doable? Is it worth it? Is it even desirable?

    Alternatively both systems could both be kept in parallel (search engines and wild cards)



  • @duarte.framos And what do you expect to happen when you click on a bookmark with such a wildcard? Is it going to - for example - google the phrase %s? How are you suppose to fill them?

    Don't get me wrong - I'm not criticizing, I'm just trying to comprehend. I don't think that the old Opera have had such a feature - and I use that browser even today. I didn't use the Firefox though (for more than a couple of days of my life), so I might have missed that feature there. I don't know, I never felt a need for such a thing, but maybe now I will, after finding out about it. 😜

    BTW. Nice use of tags, most people here (including myself 😁) don't use them either because the don't see them or they don't care about them (or forget to include them or whatever)... 😜



  • @pafflick said in Bookmark Wildcards as Replacement for Search Engines:

    @duarte.framos And what do you expect to happen when you click on a bookmark with such a wildcard? Is it going to - for example - google the phrase %s?

    Yes, currently under Firefox that is what happens, if I use any bookmark with a wildcard but don't provide any arguments it either tries searching or navigating to %s.
    In most cases the website ends up automatically redirecting you to a default page, virtually replacing the search engine by its corresponding home page.
    In some very rare cases it navigates to a generic "not found" error page, but few sites actually do that, most redirect you to some form of default search page where you can search from anyway.

    It kind of ends up almost working as current bookmarks with a nickname

    @pafflick said in Bookmark Wildcards as Replacement for Search Engines:

    BTW. Nice use of tags, most people here (including myself 😁) don't use them either because the don't see them or they don't care about them (or forget to include them or whatever)... 😜

    Thanks, I like tidy and organized. :) Never noticed them before actually, not sure if it's a feature of the new forum software



  • @duarte.framos said in Bookmark Wildcards as Replacement for Search Engines:

    I like tidy and organized. :)

    Me too. 😎

    But you still didn't tell me how to use wildcards in the bookmarks? How do you replace them with what you want? Is there any automated way to do that or do you manually select them and replace with whatever it is you're looking for?



  • @pafflick Under Firefox it is automatic. it works exactly like search engines do, provided you specified a nickname for it (or alias in Firefox lingo).

    Lets say you have a bookmark called Google with URL https://www.google.com/search?&q=%s and alias G

    • If you type in the address bar g vivaldi and press enter it will automatically do a google search with https://www.google.com/search?&q=vivaldi
    • If you click on it (from a menu or bookmark bar) it will actually search for %s with https://www.google.com/search?&q=%s;
    • And if you just type g google will actually redirect you automatically to https://www.google.com

    Not sure if it was clear but this was a feature request, under Vivaldi no replacement occurs currently it would just search for https://www.google.com/search?&q=%s with or without arguments.



  • @duarte.framos OK, I get it now, thanks. I'm supporting your idea then... 😉



  • @duarte.framos Please excuse what may be a naive question - but isn't that what the current address field & search field does?

    • If you type in the address bar g vivaldi and press enter it will automatically do a google search with https://www.google.com/search?&q=vivaldi

    Assign g as nickname for Google Search and this already works.

    • And if you just type g google will actually redirect you automatically to https://www.google.com

    That is a straight Google bookmark - no need for parameters on it.

    • If you click on it (from a menu or bookmark bar) it will actually search for %s with https://www.google.com/search?&q=%s;

    This one I don't understand - why do you want to search for %s ? Why not just put %s in search field.

    I admit I must be missing something, unless you are just asking for an alternate way to search besides the current methods in url field and search field.



  • @TbGbe I think you missed that part: 😉

    @duarte.framos said in [Feature Proposal] Bookmark Wildcards as Replacement for Search Engines:

    As I understand search engine storage is a pain to manage currently, they are hard to come by, and virtually impossible to backup according to this thread.
    This could potentially make storing search engines a lot more predictable, manageable and safe; they would be a lot easier to backup, export and even organize as regular bookmarks into folders; and could potentially simplify address bar input handling (one less thing to account for?), and less alias/nickname conflicts.



  • @pafflick Yep - I did, thanks.

    So this request is an alternate to implementing a proper backup/restore function (portable??) ?



  • Yes, this is what already happens with regular search engines, what I meant with this feature request is that if they are stored along regular bookmarks they would be a lot easier to manage and export, while retaining all the current functionality.

    @TbGbe said in [Feature Proposal] Bookmark Wildcards as Replacement for Search Engines:

    This one I don't understand - why do you want to search for %s ? Why not just put %s in search field.

    I don't want to search for %s, that is just one caveat of this feature request (a downside if you will). Clicking a bookmark with a wildcard in it, without explicitly specifying a parameter would lead to this weird behavior. Eventually if this were implemented some default behavior for this could be implemented so searching for %s would not happen.

    So summarizing, this feature request would be an alternative to the current search engine storage only, behavior would remain the same while potentially (in my layman eyes) unifying and simplifying stuff



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