Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Feature of the Week: Optimize your Firefox Browser for BibSonomy

How often do you use the search box of BibSonomy?

You can speed up searching in BibSonomy considerably by creating some
smart keywords in your Firefox webbrowser.
Afterwards, you can access all your posts with a certain tag with just some keystrokes. This blog post explains how to do this.

First try: Speed up fulltext search

  1. Navigate to www.bibsonomy.org.
  2. Right-click on the BibSonomy search box that says fulltext search here. Select Add a Keyword for this Search...
  3. In the dialog that appears, enter a short keyword, e.g., bs (like BibSonomy search).
  4. Fill the remaining fields and click Save.

Now you can search in BibSonomy by entering into your browser's location bar (reach it quickly with CTRL + L) the string bs SEARCHTERM, e.g., bs firefox and pressing ENTER. Firefox will then search for the term SEARCHTERM in BibSonomy, e.g., bs firefox opens www.bibsonomy.org/search/firefox.

Next steps: Add more keywords

Adding smart keywords for other search options in BibSonomy is now easy: just select the corresponding option in the dropdown box

and repeat the steps above with a new keyword. Here are some suggestions:
search for a tag (e.g., /tag/firefox)
search for an author (e.g., /author/Stumme)
search for one of your tags (e.g. /user/jaeschke/myown). This is explained in the next step.

Finally: Quickly access your own posts

Adding a smart keyword to access your posts having a certain tag is now straightforward: go to your BibSonomy page and right-click into the enter tag(s) here field at the top. Again, select Add a Keyword for this Search...

and enter an appropriate keyword (e.g., bm for my tags).

Here I describe a more advanced method that searches for concepts instead of tags. Note that this works even if you don't have relations defined, yet!
  1. Go to www.bibsonomy.org/concept/user/jaeschke/arbitrary_tag and exchange the user name in the URL by your user name, e.g., replace "jaeschke" by your user name. Press ENTER.
  2. Right-Click in the input box containing the string arbitrary_tag and select Add a Keyword for this Search...:

  3. Again, enter a smart keyword (I would suggest to use bm as described above.).
  4. Search for your posts by entering bm TAGNAME into the location bar of your browser (remember CTRL-C).
Nothing new so far, except for the somehow difficult to access concept search field. But what are the benefits of /concept/user/jaeschke/programming compared to /user/jaeschke/programming? Well, I have created some relations using the tag editor of BibSonomy. One of them says that the tags ada, c, fortran, java, lisp, perl, python, and ruby are sub-tags of the tag (or better concept) programming:

Now, whenever I search for /concept/user/jaeschke/programming, I get all posts having the tag programming or one of its sub-tags, i.e., ada, c, fortran, java, lisp, perl, python, or ruby.

This way I can structure my tag space - and more important - use a logical OR in my queries.

More information about concepts and relations can be found here:

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