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Content policy

This policy is for our curated shortcuts, and how they should look like.

Note that you can add any shortcut to your user repository, completely ignoring this policy.

Caveat: You might note that many curated shortcuts at this moment don't match the listed criteria. This is because Trovu's first version (named Serchilo) has existed since 2005, with user-created shortcuts available since 2007, and this policy started to be written in 2023. Thus, the goal is to finally define some standards and then slowly applying them, with as little as possible breaking of existing user habits.


Avoid pure bookmark shortcuts

Bookmark shortcuts refer to shortcuts with 0 arguments, e.g.:

g 0:
  title: Google Web Homepage

You use it by simply entering g and hitting Enter.

This shortcut to the Google Web Homepage is fine because it is not alone: There is also a shortcut for the Google Web search g 1.

But a bookmark shortcut that has no corresponding 1-or-more-argument shortcut should be avoided. You may put them into your user shortcuts.


Avoid common words

Many users use Trovu with a default keyword: They can enter any query, and if it's not matched with a shortcut, the default keyword will be used – often it refers to Google.

Thus, such users often perform their Google searches without g – because it will be applied automatically if not shortcut is found.

However, if there is a shortcut with a keyword apple or app, this breaks.

This is why we want to avoid such common words as keywords:

  • Instead of app, we use gpa (Google Play App search), and
  • instead of apple, we use apl (omitting the vowels, shorter)

Abbreviate properly

The rule of thumb: The more popular the website, the shorter may be its keyword. If we abbreviate, here are the rules.

1-letter keywords: Only for top 50

The English alphabet has 26 Latin letters. Keyword of only 1 letter should therefore be only applied if the website belongs to the top 50 in visitor's count of the world (namespace o), to minimize the likelihood of clashes.

If the shortcut shall belong to a language or country namespace, then its website should be top 50 of that country.

2-letter keywords: Language codes have priority

A keyword with 2 letters shall be used for a dictionary of that language, using its ISO-639-1 language code (e.g. en, fr, be). Such shortcuts should be put into a language namespace.

If the shortcut is not about a dictionary, then it should not use a ISO-639-1 language code. This is to keep the space for a potential future dictionary shortcut.

Abbreviate by first sounds of words and/or syllables

A good keyword shall be easily memorable, and also not a word itself. We try to achieve this by taking the first letters of the website's name (if it contains multiple words) or syllables. For example:

  • fb for FaceBook
  • db for Deutsche Bahn
  • ad for AnDroid
  • bmf for Besser MitFahren
  • bmn for BugMeNot