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[gNewSense-users] Code KDE4 Google Free (need some help)

From: Grammostola Rosea
Subject: [gNewSense-users] Code KDE4 Google Free (need some help)
Date: Fri, 03 Apr 2009 11:43:41 +0200
User-agent: Mozilla-Thunderbird (X11/20090103)


I'm not an great fan of the Google search engine. Imho it isn't very privacy friendly and they are way to powerful on the Internet and how to much influence in our 'information society'.

I know the Free Software Foundation has an Free Internet (without being tracked) also amongst its values. And also in the Gnewsense wiki I read about anonymous web searching.

Since a while I use KDE4. I'm pretty happy with it, but I have one big complain. The Google search engine is hard coded in the Kickoff menu (or Kicker). I rather like to use another search engine and I want to be able to choose my own search engine as user, but more important, I don't think it's right to hard code an Internet service of such a powerful multinational as Google is.

There is reported a bug here:

And I discussed the issue on the kde-devel mailinglist (title: "why can't I freely choose my fav search engine in 'kmenu'?"). The are open to change, but they say it will not be done in a short time, it's absolutely no priority for them, which disappointed me a bit, cause I think it is an important issue on principal and philosophic grounds.

So I thought, let's write an message to the guys of GnewSense, maybe they will value this issue in the right way and maybe they can help me change the code to get some Freedom back and to have an Google Free KDE4. I need some help here, cause I'm not an programmer myself...

The KDE devs gave me some hints and they are willing to give assistance with building a patch:

konqueror already has a "Default search engine" setting in the Web Shortcuts control panel. krunner uses the webshortcuts as well. so all it would take it
coordinating this configuration option ... perhaps it could appear in the
"Default Applications" control panel, with a button there to configure web
shortcuts (which would just bring up the kcmodule that konqi uses ...)

so ... if you'd like to implement this, here's a possible path:

* add Search Engine to the Default Applications control panel as described

* modify kickoff to use Plasma::RunnerManager for its searches

* create a WebSearch runner plugin that offers to search the web for the
search term

i'd be happy to answer any questions you'd have about the source code.

I'm looking forward for you replies and I hope you can do something for me and all the KDE users who really want to BE FREE, as KDE promises..

Kind regards,


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