[whatwg] Proposal for IsSearchProviderInstalled / AddSearchProvider

Adam Shannon adam at ashannon.us
Mon May 16 16:37:57 PDT 2011

On Mon, May 16, 2011 at 18:29, Ian Hickson <ian at hixie.ch> wrote:
>> AddSearchProvider(string openSearchUrl, [optional] bool asDefault)
>> retrieves the open search document from openSearchUrl and decides in a
>> UA specific manner whether to prompt the user about the change or
>> addition.
> I haven't specified the "asDefault" argument since it isn't implemented
> anywhere except Chrome, but other than that I have specified it. The UI is
> left very open-ended. Note that there is already an equivalent declarative
> feature in HTML: <link rel=search>.

(First, I like that asDefault hasn't been specified yet.)

I don't like having the only barrier between changing the default
search engine for a user's browser be a single dialog box. This list
(and others) have repeatedly found that dialogs don't work and users
skip past them.

Think of the non-techy user who simply clicks yes to evil.com's
request to change default search provider. Will they even know what
that means? Will they care at the time of the dialog? How will they
revert back?

I'd rather see UA's implement better controls on their end than see an
API which could be largely abused. (Drag and drop browser controls
over tons of sites asking for permission to be the default.)

Adam Shannon
Web Developer
University of Northern Iowa
Sophomore -- Computer Science B.S.

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