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Instant. Customizable. Search. [Rate my start-up] (dashler.com)
16 points by photon_off 2210 days ago | hide | past | web | 16 comments | favorite

The idea here is a page that allows you to search any website you choose, in the easiest manner possible. To me, that means having auto-complete available as I type my search, choosing whether or not I want the results in a new tab, and not having to load the landing page of the site before doing my search.

I've been using this as my startpage for about a week, and it's added a layer of convenience to anytime I'm in "research mode" about a topic. I can flip through Google, Twitter, Youtube, etc, and get a good all around feel for the prevalence of a topic, in a matter of seconds.

The filter function on the left searches through your list of search providers, but also instantly searches through Dashler's database of sites. You can specify part of a name, or a tag like "books" or "shopping" or "blog". (If you have a site you think should be there, please let me. I can add it right away.) In the "tools" section, you can add/edit/delete the search provider selected.

You can also add your own search provider. All you need is a URL with a "%q%" in it, which will be replaced by what you type in the search box.

Try it out, and let me know what you think.

It looks nice but I think I'll stick with slickrun, which saves me the 2s initial page load and can launch far more things than just searches.


Showing tips / help one line at a time might not be the best idea. For instance if you want to figure out what the filter does, you have to just click next over and over again and hope that at some point it will tell you.

Otherwise, this is pretty nice. Probably better than using a search toolbar. Though, I have quicksearches in my address bar for all of these, which means it's not really useful for me.

For instance if I want to research some programming topic X, I will go into my browser and type: "g X" -> Ctrl + T "w X" -> Ctrl + T "so X" to open tabs with searches of google, wikipedia, and stackoverflow (for instance). That's easier than clicking around on your site.

Now if you could display all search results side by side, it might be more interesting. And if you could create quicksearches for groups of that... So if I want to search Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, and Amazon.de at the same time and see results from all side by side (or in a grid layout if there are more than 3 sites). If you could do that, I'd totally use it.

Interesting concept -- It seems like it might work better as a browser plug-in though.

If you want to keep it as a web site, I would make the interface (your search box, browser list, etc.) as unobtrusive as possible (remove all the daed space, try to move your entire search interface to a bar at the top or left perhaps, and create a results pane who's vertical scroll bar is flush w the right side of the screen -- this will create a much more comfortable and familiar experience for users.

Great design advice. I'll experiment with that.

It might be a good idea to pre-emptively load the results from all the search engines so you don't have to wait for each one. Additionally, it should be obvious which ones get results and the ones that get poor results should be pared away.

Cool idea tho. You should hire a designer -- the current UI while functional definitely has that "engineer touch" :) (Not insulting, I have the same problem!)

How could I figure out which results are good, and which are bad?

Well, you definitely might not end up at a wikipedia article, or a wolfram alpha search. Beyond that you can try to get smarter about ordering them. If, for example, there are a lot of "related searches" on google, that might mean google has worse results. Or, if Google or Yahoo's first result is Wikipedia, you should rank Wikipedia first.

Cool, I'll use it for today and come back with feedback. I suggest adding DuckDuckGo, though.

Great! I appreciate it. DDG is available... type "duck" in the filter box.

You can add it to your list of providers by clicking "add" in the tools menu.

I think the UI needs attention most. I want to use it, but I want the searches to be done at once, so I can just skim across the sources. Maybe on hover-over?

It would also be good if adding a new engine were easier. The language is a bit confusing. I think there should be an explicit "add another search provider to this list".

Keep it up! I'll be checking back!

1. people don't like iframes with scrollbars. 2. people don't customize.

I like it. But I'd like it even more if it didn't use up so much screen real estate. I have a large monitor, and keep my browser windows pretty small (around 1024x768, which a lot of sites are designed for) Which is fine, but then the window-within-a-window results get positively tiny.

Really don't like that I searched for something, found a link, clicked on it, and had the whole thing loaded into an iframe that I couldn't make go away easily.

This should be considered more of a side project than a startup.

Load the sites side by side.

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