Every time you need to look up someone on your database, you would normally need to open your web browser, go to your alumni website, log in if you aren’t already, and use the quick search bar on your homepage to look somebody up. If you have to do this often, we have a few things you could do to make this a whole lot easier.

Identifying the search address.

The search address is the URL that you see on the search page on your website. It should look something like ‘//alumni.regencyuniversity.org/search?q=‘  . This search address can be used on different apps (listed below) to jump you straight into your search page.searchURL

Now that you have your search address prepared, let’s jump into some ways you can quickly run a search query through your database.


Method 1: Using Alfred (for Mac OS)

Alfred

Alfred is a great tool that I personally love to use, it’s hard to imagine life without it after you get used to it. It is essentially a replacement for Spotlight on macs. And for those of you who are used to Apple’s great spotlight search, you should love Alfred even more. Once you download Alfred (which is Free), you can easily access it using a short cut that you set. By default it should be set to option+spacebar, and it will bring up the alfred console on your display, which is where you will be typing in your keyword to trigger your database search.

Here is how you need to set up alfred to enable quick search.

Step 1: Go to alfred’s preference window.

Step 2: Navigate to Features > Web Search, and ‘Add Custom Search’

alfred_pref

Step 3: In the search URL field, add the Search address for your alumni website, and add {query} to the end. The result should look like this : //alumni.regencyuniversity.org/search?q={query}.

In the Title field, enter ” Search Alumni database for {query} “.

You can enter any keyword that you would like to trigger the search, for the sake of generalization, we are going to use the keyword ‘alumni’, but you can set it to something shorter like your schools initials.

Save your settings to complete setup.

The next time you need to run a quick search on your alumni database, you can simply type in your keyword into Alfred, followed by the search query you would like it to run. If you would like to look up for a person named steve, you can type in ‘alumni steve’ to quickly search through the database for ‘steve’.

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Method 2: Using Google Chrome

google

A similar arrangement can be set up using Google chrome too using the Custom Search Engine feature that you can find under the advanced settings in your preferences.

chrome-settings

At the bottom of the list of existing search engines, you can add your alumni database as well. Add a name to the search like ‘Alumni Database’, and a keyword that will trigger the search. Just like in the earlier example, we are going to use ‘alumni’ as the keyword, but you can set this to anything you like.

In the URL field, add your search address appended with %s. So your URL should look something like this: //alumni.regencyuniversity.org/search?q=%s 

And that’s about it. You’re all set. Now if you’d ever need to quick search your alumni database, simply type in the keyword you selected, ‘alumni’ and the query you want to run into the address bar on Google chrome


Keep watching this space for more tips on more ways to quick search your alumni database on almabase.

Let us know what you think in the comments. Do you think a quick lookup feature helps ? what are some of the things you try to look up during a quick search?

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