Firefox keywords: custom search with bookmarks

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Many people use a search engine to navigate the Internet. But what you might not know is that Firefoxnote 1 lets you easily query many different websites with the add a keyword feature.

Why bother?

For a number of reasons, “smart keywords” (I guess that’s what Mozilla calls them) can be a very useful tool for you.

  • Better online privacy. Only query and send data to the site you want answers from, right?
  • It saves time. Once set up, this method allows you to do it all in one easy step—even when you’re on a different web page or in a blank tab/window.

Using Wiktionary as an example

Let’s take Wiktionary, the multilingual dictionary as an example.

Navigate to Wiktionary and right click Wiktionary’s search bar. A context menu will pop up with a number of entries. Left click the “Add a Keyword for this Search…” entry.

Inside a context menu, the “Add a Keyword
								for this Search…” entry is

Firefox will now present a dialog box with three options.

  1. The name of the bookmark.
  2. The location to save the bookmark in.
  3. The keyword to use for the bookmark.

Choose a name and location if you like. Then, type in your desired keyword and click “Save.” I chose wkt.

A dialog box that asks for the name of the
							bookmark, the folder to save it in, and the

Testing it out

Now it’s possible to find the definition of a word by typing wkt (or whatever keyword you chose) into Firefox’s address bar, followed by the word you want to know the meaning of.

Here’s an exercise to test this: what’s the difference between “somnambulism” and “funambulism?”

What else is possible?

You can add keywords to ordinary bookmarks, too (either by filling in the appropriate field as you add them, or by editing them after). This makes it easy to go to frequently visited websites in a couple of keystrokes. But, because there’s no query to make, nothing comes after the keyword.