Address bar searches (was: epiphany-list gnome org)

On Sun, 2005-09-04 at 12:29 -0700, Ryan Thiessen wrote:
> In the recent bugreport over the change in address bar policy in
> Epiphany,, Reinout
> correctly suggested that we move the discussion/debate here to
> epiphany-list.

> But if I am missing something, my mind is not closed on this.  Can
> someone in favour of changing the behaviour speak up and explain how
> these users are expected to manage the change if the present behaviour
> is continued to the Gnome release.

First of all, read <>.
The original behavior was a privacy violation (with a dash of corporate
favouritism) which is certainly a more critical bug (albeit, probably
for fewer people). If the choice is only between enabling and disabling
the auto-search, disabling is unquestionably the right thing to do.

However, bug #158486 is still open, which means Epiphany's developers
are aware there is a problem. The current behavior tweak is a stop-gap
fix to a serious problem.

What else was wrong with the old behavior? Well, any punctuation or
special symbols would break it, leaving you with the same error page you
see now.

What's the easiest workaround? Create a smart bookmark to
(bookmark "";). When you type in an
address, you can select that smart bookmark to perform the search: it
shows up at the bottom of the auto-complete list. This has always
worked, and it's nice because it lets you use many search engines.

How about a better fix? Well, if we could allow a keyboard shortcut to
go to a smart bookmark field, we could bind "Ctrl-K" to a default
"google" smart bookmark, as done in Firefox. I personally dislike that
behavior, because I'm used to typing anything I want into the one, big
"location" field. (In my experience, 90% of Firefox browsing sessions
begin by typing a whole lot of words into that 10-character-wide field;
and the Location bar is rarely -- if ever -- used.)

There are plans for a "keyword search" feature, too, like Galeon does.
"gg some search terms", for instance. I'm not particularly fond of that
idea, but I could live with it. It would be an extension.

It boils down to this: automatically sending typos and other accidental
phrases to a for-profit company beyond GNOME's control is Wrong. It's
evil. Taking that into account, we must think up a better way of
handling searches. It'll take creativity: no browser I've seen has done
a good job of it.

Adam Hooper <adamh densi com>

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