Firefox 3.2 to integrate natural-language commands


— 11:46 AM on February 10, 2009

Remember Ubiquity, that experimental Firefox extension that lets users input natural-language commands like "map this" and "share-on-facebook?" In an interview with Firefox architect Mike Connor, the folks at PC Pro learned that Mozilla will integrate Ubiquity's functionality into the next major release of its web browser—not Firefox 3.1, which is already close to gold, but the future 3.2 release.

Ubiquity is still available as an experimental browser extension from Mozilla Labs, and developers have written scores of custom commands for it. The extension needs users to bring up the command input box by hitting control-space, but according to Connor, Firefox 3.2 will integrate it right into the address bar. Firefox's address bar (a.k.a. the "Awesome Bar") already does automatic keyword searches in users' history and bookmarks.

Aside from Ubiquity integration, Connor said Firefox 3.2 will include a "lightweight theming" feature that will let folks "customise the design of the browser without downloading separate extensions." The new browser will also feature Prism, a feature that can turn web apps into "pseudo desktop apps" with their own Windows shortcuts—something Google's Chrome already implements.

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