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Inquisitor 1.0 (Beta 5)

Inquisitor 1.0 (Beta 5) is now available for download. This is a minor release that fixes the bug in Beta 4 that prevented changes to the standard search site (return) from actually taking effect.

Inquisitor 1.0 (Beta 4)

Inquisitor 1.0 (Beta 4) is now available for download.

The first major improvement concerns search history. Inquisitor now includes searches from your search history in the suggestion pop-down, highlighted and prioritized by the last time searched. This is different from Beta 3 which would highlight previously used search terms, but would not augment the global suggestions with your own personal search history. There are also new preference controls for this.

The second major improvement is the addition of user-customizable shortcut-triggered search sites. For example (using the default settings), hitting return in the search field searches Google, option-return takes you directly to the first Google result, control-return takes you to A9.com’s results, option-command-i does an image search, etc. These shortcuts also work when the search field is not active, so you can flip between different search sites with relative ease simply by using the keyboard.

I’d also just like to remind people that Inquisitor is donation-ware, and your donations are very important in keeping this project alive. I do have many other major time commitments (public and not), and every donation, no matter how small, goes a long way in helping me justify continued refinement of this project. Thanks in advance!

  • Comments Off on Inquisitor 1.0 (Beta 4)
  • June 19th, 2005 4:35 pm

Inquisitor 1.0 (Beta 3)

Inquisitor 1.0 (Beta 3) is now available. Inquisitor now incorporates a certain amount of local knowledge – that is, your personal search history – when producing search completions. This is somewhat explicit as previously selected items in the list are drawn with a slightly highlighted background.

Beta 3 also fixes minor bugs when doing site: searches or queries with quotes. Also, highlight colors now abide to the user’s appearance settings.

Inquisitor 1.0 (Beta 2)

Inquisitor 1.0 Beta 2 is now available for download. The sole change is the addition of a user preference to disable animation effects, which can positively alter the perceived speed and responsiveness of the interaction.

Inquisitor 1.0 (Beta 1)

I’m pleased to announce that the first beta of Inquisitor is now available for download. Inquisitor is a predictive-search extension for Safari with a simple and sensible interface (with some interface flourishes for effect). It augments the Safari web search field with predictive search capabilities.

Predictive search has two really compelling uses:

Auto-completion: Suppose you want to search for the keyword “acquisition”. With Inquisitor, you need only type “acq”. The remainder is filled in automatically since Inquisitor knows that “acquisition” is what most people will end up typing.

Query suggestion: Suppose you type in “ipod”, but aren’t really sure how to make the query more specific. Inquisitor provides a list of common queries involving the “ipod” keyword, such as “ipod shuffle”, “ipod mini”, “ipod accessories”, “ipod cases”, etc. Pick one and go.

Inquisitor 1.0 is freeware. If you want to send a token of appreciation or encourage the continued refinement of Inquisitor, tips/donations are graciously accepted.

Please note that this release requires Mac OS X Tiger – a Panther-compatible version is a possibility for the future.

Inquisitor rebirthed

Many months ago, I developed an application concept for a web search utility called ‘Inquisitor’. The idea was pursued for a few releases before I decided I was chasing an interesting idea up a tree. The executive summary is that Inquisitor, as a separate application, was too far removed from the web browser to be truly useful in regular situations. Over the last few days I’ve been toying with a concept that has a similar conceptual basis to Inquisitor (and will take on the name), but is properly integrated with the web browser (Safari). The idea is simple enough – add predictive search capabilities to the Google search field in Safari. Think Google Suggest (which doesn’t actually work in Safari, strangely enough) with superfluous eye candy. When? Soon. And it’ll be free.