Today I Learned: collection of notes, tips and tricks and stuff I learn from day to day working with computers and technology as an open source contributor and product manager

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Add search shortcuts to Chrome

Using customized search engines in Chrome is really powerful and can speed up you day to way productivity.

The idea is to have sort of a shortcut for URLs where they share a common pattern. This can be useful for:

  • Perl distributions and documentation on MetaCPAN or search.cpan.org if you use that site
  • RT tickets on CPAN bug tracker or your own RT installation
  • Jira Issues
  • Oracle Error Numbers
  • RFCs

All you have to do is edit the Omnibox (URL/address field) in Chrome. Right-click on the box and choose ‘Edit Search Engines’. Under ‘Other search engines’ you can then add your own.

  1. In the first column you add a label
  2. In the second a shortcut
  3. And in the third a URL including a %s, which will be the placeholder where our parameter (search string) will be placed.

So if we define:

MetaCPAN as meta pointing to the address: http://metacpan.org/search?q=%s

Now the Omnibox allows us to write: meta perl::critic and we are sent to the page holding information on Perl::Critic at MetaCPAN.

Here are some of the shortcuts I use and have used regularly:

Perl Distributions and Documentation

You simply provide the package name of the Perl distribution:

Suggested keyword pod and URL: https://metacpan.org/pod/%s

Suggested keyword: meta or cpan and URL: http://metacpan.org/search?q=%s

I previously distinguished between MetaCPAN and search.cpan.org, but since search.cpan.org has been decommissioned, the earlier suggestion of cpan can also be mapped to MetaCPAN.

Oracle Error Numbers

For getting information fast on the Oracle error that bites you:

Suggested keyword oraand URL: http://ora%s.ora-code.com/

Request Tracker Numbers

For getting fast to the RT you want to read:

Suggested keyword rt and URL: https://rt.cpan.org/Public/Bug/Display.html?id=%s

Jira Issues

For getting fast to the Jira issue you want to read:

Suggested keyword jira and URL: https://url_of_your_jira_instance/browse/%s

RFC Standards Documents

For easy access to RFCs:

Suggested keyword rfc and URL: http://datatracker.ietf.org/doc/%s


Suggested keyword twitter and URL: http://twitter.com/search?q=%s

Do note that the keyword should not resemble something you want to Google often, since the Omnibox is magical and acts as a search field which is what this tip uses.