Ubiquity Working on Me

by Oct 13, 2008Uncategorized5 comments

Mozilla Labs’ Ubiquity is working on me. The day it came out I was foolishly dismissive because it isn’t as fast as Firefox’s Keyword Search. That’s still true, but it does more than keyword searching, and even for keyword searching it provides some helpful added functionality.

Here are four tools I like:

1. Amazon Lookup

I’m forever looking up books on Amazon. Sometimes I just need a full, exact title. I don’t need to go all the way to Amazon to get it, and Ubiquity helps me get just that much info.

I’m not sure, however, why an Amazon search for “John Frame” in Ubiquity brings up the image below, while regular Amazon search brings up all of Frame’s books:

Picture 2.png

2. Gmail Tool: “TinyURL This”

I like TinyURL. I don’t trust all of my e-mail recipients to realize that 1) they need to turn on HTML in their e-mail client and 2) they need to copy a whole URL into their browser’s address bar if their e-mail client has split it up into two or more lines. So I highlight the URL I want to use, invoke Ubiquity, and turn it instantly into a Tiny URL. (If you’re worried that TinyURL will run out of free URL’s, do the math: 366 = 2,176,782,336 possible URLs).

Picture 2.png

3. Gmail Tool: “Word Count This”

I use Gmail for all my e-mail except for business junk e-mail (I use Allmail.net for that). With Ubiquity, I can select my reply and figure out how long it is. Cool.Picture 3.png

4. ESV Lookup

Need to look up a verse quick? I use the ESV website with Firefox’s Keyword Search multiple times a day. But if I want to look up a string of verses, I can use the “esv” command:

Picture 1.png

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  1. Duncan

    Glad to hear it! I tried to tell you this back then. Oh well. Happy trails!

  2. Duncan

    Hey Mark,

    I’m playing with a tweaked version of that esv Ubiquity command that pastes the verse into your current selection instead of just showing it in the search window. If I published that, do you think you’d find it useful? It’s still clunky, but I think people might find this sort of thing handy if I threw it out there.

  3. Mark L Ward Jr

    Go for it, Duncan, and I think I might indeed use it. I do that kind of pasting more frequently with BibleWorks, but there’s no BW for Mac, so for Gmail that would be useful.


  4. Duncan

    OK! Cool! I’ll probably release a bare-minimum beta version tomorrow. It might be something the Crossway people would be interested in hosting eventually once I polish it off.