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How I Use (Georg)

I have started creating this project in 2005, many of my friends have known it for years, and they fall into exactly two groups:

There's nothing in between. No one seems to be using it just occasionally.

I'm part of the latter group, and to help you join us, I will show you how I use Trovu.

My Setup #

First, here's how Trovu is integrated into my devices:

(Advanced) Googling #

My most frequent shortcut is g for Google. But sometimes, I need a more complicated Google search, and Trovu has shortcuts for these:

Google for results only in a certain language: #

>gol berlin

will yield results about Berlin only on websites in German – because German is the language I defined in my setup.

For other languages, I can prefix with the language code:

>pl.gol berlin

will show results only from Polish websites.

Google search only on Wikipedia sites: #

>wg berlin

This is like adding to my Google search query. It will list only results from that domain, thus all Wikipedia articles that mention Berlin.

I prefer this over the actual Wikipedia shortcut w because it's much faster and allows for more fuzzy searches.

I can also search other languages by prefixing it with the language code:

>fr.wg berlin

This will perform a Google search with

Same for Reddit and X (Twitter): #

>rg berlin
>xg berlin

These will only show results from or, making for a fast and fuzzy-allowing Reddit or X search, sometimes better than their built-in searches.

So, while anything can be done directly with Google, it's much shorter with Trovu's shortcuts.

Train Connections #

I live in Germany and often take the train. There's an old and hidden UI for the train timetables, originally made for the text-based Lynx web browser. It works to this day and is very fast; one only needs to know its URL—or use the Trovu shortcut.

>dbt berlin, hamburg

will show the next train from Berlin to Hamburg.

I can also add the time, and if I want, the date:

>dbt berlin, hamburg, 10, 8.12.

Note that while this interface is fast, it does not show current delays or non-planned interruptions (roughly any outage newer than 24 hours). For that, I use the regular interface:

>db berlin, hamburg

Typed Arguments #

All of these arguments are typed, so I can also do this:

>db b, hh, +2, fr

from and to are of type city, so they can take an abbreviation of a city name. Usually, these are the ones used on vehicle registration plates.

The time and date are, yes, time and date:

Filter for Regional Trains #

Cheaper connections can be found if I limit my search to only regional trains (suitable for the Deutschlandticket). I can do so by calling:

>dbn berlin, hamburg

Google Maps #

To find a place on Google Maps, I use:

>gm berlin

If I need a certain street in some city, I use two arguments:

>gm hamburg, hauptstraße

Here, the first argument is typed again as city, so I can use a city name abbreviation:

>gm hh, hauptstraße

To find directions from one place to another, I call:

>gd berlin, hamburg

Again, city name abbreviations work too:

>gd b, hh

Google Flights #

My favorite way to search flights is via Google Flights:

>gfl ber, ibiza, fr, mo

It opens Google Flights and shows direct results for return flights from BER (Berlin) to Ibiza, going there on the next Friday and coming back on the next Monday.

For one-way flights, I use:

>gfl1 ber, ibiza, 10

The date here denotes the 10th of the current month. If it is already in the past, it translates to the 10th of next month.

Programming #

As a developer, I often need to look up libraries and forums:

>npm yaml

will search for Node packages related to YAML.

>sof yaml

will search Stack Overflow for questions around YAML.

Dictionaries #

I speak a few languages and often learn new ones. For a dictionary of most languages, I only need their ISO code:

>en baum
>fr baum
>pl baum

These shortcuts will call dictionaries from English, French, and Polish into German — again because German is the language I defined in my setup.

Though, I can override this language by prefixing with another code:

>es.en baum
> baum
> baum

These will call the dictionaries into Spanish instead.

Media #

>yt berlin

searches for YouTube videos about Berlin.

>ytd berlin

does the same but sorts them by date (newest first).

There are also a few torrent search engines; my preferred one is BTDigg:

>btd berlin

Shopping #

I search for books and other products on Amazon:

>a smartphone

For things from China, I look on Temu and AliExpress:

>tmu camera
>axp camera

Do I Remember All Shortcut Keywords? #

The ones I mentioned, yes. These are not many, and I use them regularly.

If there's a shortcut that I know or assume exists but I just don't know its keyword or syntax, I call "my" Trovu page, that is, Trovu with my current settings:


I am then on and have the suggestions available just while typing.

Curious About Yours #

If you are already a Trovu user, too, I'd be curious about your setup and practice. Please share it in our Github Discussions, or as a reply to the X post.