Google Lets Mac Users Quickly Search Outside the Browser

    June 10, 2009
    Chris Crum

Earlier in the year, Google gave developers a preview of a new open-source quick search box for Mac outside of the browser. The company has now made this available to everyone.

The Google Quick Search Box comes equipped with search suggestions as you would expect. These suggestions range from apps and local files on your computer to web search and navigational suggestsions, as wel las items from your browser history, and contacts. Google says more types of results will become available in time.

Quick search box for mac
Quick Search Box suggestions

"Once you’ve found the result you want, we wanted you to be able to DO something with it," Product Managers Ryan Tabone and KarenGrünberg explain. "To find out what you can do, select a result and press the tab key or the right arrow on the keyboard. Some examples of actions include instant messaging friends, playing a song, or emailing a URL. Just like the data you can search over, the list of actions you can perform will grow over time!"

To access he Quick Search Box, users simply need to push control+spacebar or Command twice. Shortcuts can be customized in the preferences panel.

"As you use the Google Quick Search Box more, it will learn which results you are likely to want," the product managers say. "The goal here is that we get you to what you’re looking for as quickly as possible. In the above example, if you chose Google Calendar, the next time you search for "cal", Google QSB will reorder the results so that you don’t have to arrow down to your desired choice. Instead, you can just type "cal" and press enter."

The beauty of the Quick Search Box being open source is that plug-ins can be created to improve features and functionality on a potentially massive scale. In fact, there is already a Twitter plug-in, that many users are likely to find helpful.