OpenDNS Aims for Consistent Web Browsing
A provider of Internet addressing services hopes to unify how you navigate
the Web when using different browsers and computers.
This week, OpenDNS introduced "shortcuts" -- settings you may use
to reach certain Web sites when typing in specific alphanumeric combinations
in the address bar.
For instance, you can define "nyt" to bring you to the home page
of The New York Times or "tech" to bring you to the site's technology
section. You can define "g" to reach Google and type "g sopranos"
in a browser's address bar to do a search on the television show.
Two different users can define "bank" to reach their respective online
banks, or "mail" to get their primary Web-based e-mail account. OpenDNS
keeps track of who's defining what.
OpenDNS provides free directory services necessary to translate a Web site's
domain name into its actual numeric Internet address, so browsers can reach
the site. Typically computer users get such services through their Internet
service provider or corporate network; they must adjust their computer settings
to use the OpenDNS service instead.
Users also must create a free account and log on to have their settings work
across different browsers and computers. Otherwise, settings remain stored in
a "cookie" data file, limited to the browser and the computer in which
the setting was created.
Opera Software ASA's Opera browser has similar shortcuts, but settings on one
don't affect other browsers or computers. Other browsers including Mozilla's
Firefox and Microsoft Corp.'s Internet Explorer have different ways of handling
what gets typed into the address bar.
David Ulevitch, OpenDNS's chief executive, said the goal behind the shortcuts
was to give its 500,000 to 750,000 users a more consistent experience.