SearchLink 2.0 is up now. I had enough changes to make after the last version — which I already thought was a pretty big step forward — that I decided it was time for a major version bump. If you’re not familliar with SearchLink as a tool for speedier blogging and online writing, see the project page for more info.

External configuration

First, you can now copy all config options to a file called “.searchlink” in your home folder and SearchLink will read configuration options from that, overriding what’s in the Automator action. If/when new options are added, you’ll have to manually paste override values into the config file, but the benefit is that you won’t have to reconfigure existing options every time you update to the latest version.

Custom search definitions

This file is a great place to work with the new “custom site search” feature. You can define shortcuts (and even override existing ones) with custom Google site searches. You just define the shorthand and tell it which specific site to search when it encounters your !xx markers.

You can edit this directly in the Automator Workflow’s “Run Shell Script” action, or copy the below into your ~/.searchlink file and modify there:

custom_site_searches ||= {
  "bt" => "",
  "md" => ""

Easier Google searches

In the last version I made it possible to select any text and treat it as a Google search without needing any [](!g) syntax. This version allows you to use just [text]() to default to a Google search for the text in the square brackets. You can also use variants:

[]("search terms")
Updates the link with the results of the search terms, using the title of the located page as the text for the link.
[me]("brett terpstra")
The word “me” will be replaced with the results of the search for “brett terpstra,” keeping “me” as the link text.


Titles are cleaned better and truncated properly to avoid a bunch of SEO garbage getting into your writing or link titles.

If any Pythonistas want to take a crack at porting the latest version, I’m sure myself and other Editorial/Pythonista users would be grateful. Contact me for any info you need.

SearchLink v2.3.65

Generate Markdown links from web searches without leaving your editor.

Published 11/10/14.

Updated 01/16/24. Changelog

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