Wednesday, 20 September 2006

Search results: navigation keyboard shortcuts

Following my post on the beauty of keyboard shortcuts, Luis Velez asked whether there was a hotkey for moving to the Next page of Google search results.

Yes, there can be. If you use the fab free browser Firefox (please download it via the sidebar link if you want to support this blog!), you can download a free extension for Fox which lets you use the keyboard to navigate search results pages on popular Net search engines like Google, Yahoo, even social bookmarking site Delicious.

That extension' s called Search Keys (here's how to install a Firefox extension). After installing it, a Google search results page will look like this:

See the extra number in a green box after the heading of each search result in the list? Type a number on your keyboard e.g. 1 to go straight to that result (which for the search "LG Chocolate help" happens to be my post on connecting the LG KG800 Chocolate mobile phone to your PC, not as easy as it should be). Typing 3 takes you to the CNET forums, etc.

To move to the Previous or Next page of the search results, on Google at least, you can use the comma (,) or period (.) respectively - see them added in brackets? Just type the comma etc without any brackets:

(Note, if the previous/next keys stop working you may need to uninstall and reinstall that extension, I've had that issue myself anyway.)

This extension works on other search sites too. But you can't yet move to the previous/next page of the search results with other search engines like Yahoo, although that's on the developer's todo list for the future (see under "Possible features"). Well done and thanks to Jesse Ruderman for a very useful extension.

(By the way, while on keyboard shortcuts, I've updated my paean to hotkeys to link to a blog dedicated to keyboard shortcuts, Mousethreat, no not solely because he linked to my post but because I love hotkeys and like the idea of a blog dedicated to them. Yep call me a geek, though I'd prefer "power user"...)


Luis Velez said...

All I can say is thank you so much - this extension is the best ever! Will make my navigation so much easier... thanks!

Improbulus said...

You're welcome Luis. I like it too!