Search Directgov via IE8 and actually IE7 and Firefox

27 March 2009 at 11:06 1 comment

If you download Internet Explorer v8 you can use the new ‘accelerator’ feature to select some text on any web page, then right-click to access a ‘search Directgov’ link which fires that word directly into the Directgov search engine as a search query. (other search engine options available).

And Simon Dickson has thoughtfully added a search plugin for Directgov, which will allow you to search Directgov directly from the browser interface.

“Visit this page on the MozDev website to find Puffbox’s brand new Directgov search plugin. Click on the word Directgov, and it’ll ask you if you want to install – say yes. If you then consult the list of search engines available from your browser’s built-in search box, you should now see a Directgov option. Enter a word, and it’ll take you straight to a search query Directgov results for that word.”


Entry filed under: search, search interface.

Design for your least able user – a search bot Crowd sourcing ups and downs

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. philipmc  |  27 March 2009 at 17:55


    For readers who use Firefox and IE8, I wanted your readers to be aware that Firefox has a version of Accelerators too, it is called “KALLOUT – Accelerators for Firefox” It’s available as a free add-on through Firefox. See:

    I believe the Accelerator developed by DirectGov works directly with KallOut-Accelerators for Firefox. Users who like Firefox can stick with it and still get the benefit of whatever the UK government has developed.

    We can knock MS all we want but the selection-based search is really helpful in IE8. One GREAT feature of KallOut is BestGuess. The challenge with selection-based search is that the user has to figure out which one to apply to his selection. It’s a little clunky once you get more than two or three. KallOut does a super job figuring out which accelerator you need to use for a given selection-based search request. Kallout — Accelerators for Firefox is actually kind of spooky when it works so well.

    Check it out! I agree that it’s a big step forward for the user to have the selection-based search bundled into the browser by default, however.

    “KALLOUT – Accelerators for Firefox” is available through Mozilla at



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