Drag and DropZones adds amazing gesture-based Web search to Firefox

We take a look at a really neat add-on for Firefox that gives you gesture-based controls for dragging and dropping text into various search engines and commands.

Josh Lowensohn Former Senior Writer
Josh Lowensohn joined CNET in 2006 and now covers Apple. Before that, Josh wrote about everything from new Web start-ups, to remote-controlled robots that watch your house. Prior to joining CNET, Josh covered breaking video game news, as well as reviewing game software. His current console favorite is the Xbox 360.
Josh Lowensohn
2 min read

I've only recently become interested in gesture-based computing. In the past I think it's been an overly complicated affair with too much learning involved, but these days with special hardware like Apple's multitouch track pad and some really fantastic Firefox plug-ins, gesture-based navigation is slowly becoming mainstream.

One Firefox plug-in that's pushing this envelope is Drag and DropZones. It's a mix of keyboard shortcuts and search engines in one simple tool that puts both together in one giant, transparent grid that can be summoned with a single drag and drop. To make it work, you simply highlight some text and drag it into a search engine or shortcut of your choice. The tool comes with a large number of engines and shortcuts included, and you can have up to 64 within the confines of the grid.

What makes the tool just wonderful is that you can customize the heck out of it. You can move around boxes, change the size and color of the grid space, and pick what items you want and where they go--even duplicating items to add more shortcuts in the same space.

I gave it a quick spin earlier today and am definitely keeping it around. Between this and the AutoCopy extension you'll be saving yourself from ever having to use your keyboard when browsing, which both carpal tunnel sufferers and lazy people can appreciate.

To see how it works, watch my quick screencast below (note: there's no audio).

[via MozillaLinks]

Drag and Dropzones demo for Webware from Josh Lowensohn on Vimeo.