Built In Browser

Would you use a built-in browser in Scrivener?

  • Yes
  • No

0 voters

Not sure if this has been suggested, but a built in web browser would be a great feature. Find a website, select some text and/or pictures, and click a button to automatically keep a note in the research section. This will prevent me from switching back and forth between Firefox and Scrivener. Plus it could store the url so I can properly reference the information without too many additional steps.

I understand the desire for something like that, but to be honest, I want my writing tool to be a writing tool, not a jack of all trades.

To use an analogy, a well-designed screwdriver fits great in your hand, and you love using it. A screwdriver that’s also a hammer and a wrench starts to feel bulky and awkward, and it stays in the drawer.

The main reason I chose “no” on this one is that I would personally rather see development time go toward improving the writing tools, rather than the researching tools, especially when there are other applications which (in most cases) are open 24/7 that handle this in a dedicated fashion. My second reason: I do not find dragging links from Firefox to be any more labour intensive than a capture mechanism would be from within Scrivener. Third: I have used other applications that have integrated browsers, such as DEVONthink and newsreaders, and I never use the browser feature. I have all of my preferences and tools set up the way I like them in Firefox. I am very comfortable in that browser, and using a stripped down embedded browser is just not nearly as efficient a use of my time. This last one is probably a bit paranoid, but I am a bit of a security nut, and I have Firefox tuned to leave as small a trail as possible when I browse. With embedded browsers I have no control over cookies, Javascript, advertisement downloads, and so on.

Interestingly, I once asked for this exact feature for another writing program I was trying out. I was used to having it in DevonThink Pro.

But to be honest, while I know other users who use this feature of DT often, I seldom use it in DT any more, since it has gotten so easy to import web contents without having to view things within the program itself. And I see no real reason for it in Scr., where the job is writing and developing a specific project. Scr. lets me store links, which is pretty important, since a good deal of my research material is often web-based. But I don’t need to view a linked page itself within Scr. It’s fine that I can view it in my favorite web browser. And if I want to import the contents into Scr. for more development, I can do that too easily enough.

If Scr. could do what you request, that would be fine. Or perhaps if I worked ONLY in Scr. it might make more sense to me. But I agree that I’d rather see development time going into improving the writing aspects of Scr., which is what I need–a writing environment that I can tailor to my needs. The research side of Scr. is already robust enough for my uses.


My 2 cents,

Yet again, what is required here isn’t a new feature - it’s a good user scenario. Scrivener -or Devonthink for that matter- could never rival the tools already available in Firefox, Safari etc. Better to aim at better integration with available browsers.


I agree with the previous posters on this one. I see no need for browsing capabilities from within Scrivener, and in fact, I would rather not see time/energy spent on its development.

Scrivener is so good primarily because it’s a writing tool. As such, integration in future versions with bibliographic software is more important in my mind.

My .02 :slight_smile:

Fair enough response, and I suppose it does make sense. I am unfamiliar with DevonThink, I’ll certainly take a look at it. Otherwise I would like to say that Scrivener is a great application, and keep up the great work.

Thanks for your kind words on Scrivener, erasableink. I think the others have pretty much explained why this won’t happen in Scrivener without my having to say anything. :slight_smile: But basically, consider how much development goes into a good web browser, such as Safari or (my favourite) Camino. There is just no way I could match their features and make Scrivener a good writer’s app. That is why I decided links should open your default browser, which will always be the best way to view web content.
Thanks for your ideas,
All the best,

two more cents coming in…

The main problem I have with browsers embedded in apps such as Devonthink (and Agent) is that they do not support plugins. I tends towards the paranoid, especially as far as browsing habits are concerned, and any web browser that doesn’t support extensions (to enable/disable images/javascript/plugins/cookies on the fly, to take anti-spooofing measures such as reverse dns lookups, etc) simply doesn’t get used.

I’m firmly in the “more integration, not more features” camp.