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Please DO NOT listen to this guy. This auto-focus to the search box misfeature absolutely ruins any page viewing navigation.

For people who use up/down arrow or pgup/pgdown keys to scroll down the page (which is pretty much all laptop users), this focus stealing misfeature would frustrate them to no end.

I won't go back to any site that does this.

More importantly it completely breaks the page for a page-reading program, meaning the site becomes significantly less accessible to disabled users. In fact the guide to accessible website design (don't remember where to find it now) specifically says NOT to autofocus to some "random" or arbitrary place on the page.

Please DO NOT listen to this guy.

Steady on, soldier. I just asked a question.

Sorry. It's just a lot of websites have gone that route and it's really annoying. I didn't want Amazon to cave in to the seeming demand from users and wanted to present another view.

Judging from the up-votes it seems this resonates with a lot of people.

Not to mention any sort of single-key navigation. What is important though is that TAB should work and focus the important fields in the correct order.

I disagree completely. The fact that Amazon does not auto-focus to the search box annoys me greatly, since 99% of the time I find the items I'm looking for via search. Compared to Google, Youtube, etc. Amazon feels clunky.

Then why don't you just search via Google? "site:amazon.com bank of bob" or even most of the time you can just add the word amazon to your search query "amazon bank of bob" and I get exactly what I'm searching for.

To me you haven't made any case at all why others should have to suffer so you can have auto-focus on Amazon when your needs are already met elsewhere.

Things like this are why I have DuckDuckGo as my browser's default search engine.

"!amazon thingamabob" (or just "!a thingamabob").

Way more convenient than going to the homepage and worrying about search auto-focus.

My favorite thing about DDG is that at this point there are so many bang syntaxes defined that if I don't know the syntax for something, I can often just guess and half the time I get it right!

Firefox keyword search is more direct, though you have to define them yourself. See my comment above.

Try keyword search on Firefox:

"a foo" to search on amazon, "g foo" google, "i foo" imdb, "m foo" google maps, "w foo" wikipedia, "u foo" urbandictionary, etc... I have more but they are not public sites.

Chrome automatically recognizes searches on sites, so that you can just type "ama[TAB]" in de URL bar, and it will give you a site-specific search straight in the URL bar (provided that "ama" auto-completes to "amazon.com" for you, naturally). This works for basically every site you've ever visited that has search functionality. It's pretty decent.

That's interesting, though I only care about a few sites, and prefer the brevity of the ff keywords.

Sounds like the two could complement each other, like aliases and completion in a shell.

You can rename the search engine abbreviations as you like.

I have "w" for wikipedia, "y" for youtube, "gm" for google maps, etc...

This is THE feature of Chrome that I use constantly every day. It saves 5-10 seconds on each search you do every day. It adds up.

Is it still a misfeature on pages that fit on one screen, e.g. google.com, or (my own company's) mixrank.com?

Isn't a better strategy to optimize for the common use-case?

I think it makes sense on Google where that's all you're going to do (more than just a common use case, it's almost the ONLY use case, probably like five 9s).

I don't think it makes sense on Amazon. A typical amazon user may browse around and explore outside of search. Maybe most of the time they will search, but there are no doubt other use cases like using the fancy nav. It's even possible that they want to encourage user's the browse around a bit instead of finding what they want and leaving right away.

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