Productivity Tip – Firefox Smart Keywords

No MDX, Essbase or ASO internals in the post (you may be relieved to read).

Instead, I want to highlight a very simple but wonderful feature of the Firefox browser – using Smart Keywords (aka ‘Smart Bookmarks‘) to perform custom searches. In brief, ‘Smart Keywords’ allow you to associate the search function of a web page with a text keyword.

If you’re already familiar – as many ‘tech’ types will be – you can stop reading now. If you aren’t, I think you’ll be very pleasantly surprised by how easy this makes accessing your go-to EPM online resources.

For example, I have associated the keyword ‘tr’ with the search box in the Essbase Technical Reference. Now I can open a new tab in Firefox, and enter the following:

Using a Smart Keyword




Hitting return takes me immediately to the following page, just as if I had navigated to the Technical Reference, entered “alter session”, and then clicked “Search”:

Smart Keyword Results





Even better, I have Smart Keywords configured for the Database Administrator’s Guide (dbag), the Network54 Essbase board (n54), and the entire ‘Business Intelligence’ space at OTN (otn). I can get straight in to search results at all of those places, direct from the address bar.

Mozilla explain how to set Smart Keywords up here.

One warning – the method described at the link above doesn’t quite work for OTN. It produces a bookmark that looks like this:

I manually edited the bookmark to look like this…

…and all was well. The ‘place’ and ‘places’ parameter values in my URL would need to be modified to create a search restricted to different OTN spaces. An easy way to do that would be to run a search manually against your selected space(s) and then inspect the URL.

Update July 9th 2015

It occurred to me that the built-in search for the Oracle documentation is not particularly flexible compared to, say, Google or DuckDuckGo.  The Google “site:” modifier can accept a URL, so it’s possible to use Google to search just the (for example) Technical Reference with the following Smart Keyword bookmark:

Compare the output of the following searches – I know which one I prefer (not to mention the ability to use other Google modifiers, quoting, logical operators etc):

Google Technical Reference Search

Google Technical Reference Search

Native Technical Reference Search

Native Technical Reference Search


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