DNS is boring. Seriously. I’m yawning as I type this. However, OpenDNS is adding some very unusual features to their already speedy nameserver service.
OpenDNS is a separate DNS nameserver system that offers a few interesting things. First, it speeds up your browsing time, subtracting a few seconds with each query. Second, it offers “search completion.” Whenever you mis-type a URL, instead of going to an error page, it offers a few possible sites. Fair enough. That’s useful.
However, now you can create your own shortcuts. Shortcuts are one or two letter URLs that you type into your address bar that forward straight to a certain URL. You can even add variables to the shortcuts. For example, I have “cg [search term]” automatically set up to search CrunchGear. Pretty cool. It’s not hard to see the value in this — instead of trying to hit “www.gmail.com”, you just type “gm” or something. This works on any machine with an IP being serviced by OpenDNS, so small office IT administrators can create links to webmail or intranet resources that everyone in the office can use. Families can do the same thing.
Set-up is a breeze if you know your way around a router. I saw a demo a few weeks ago and was really impressed. It’s finally working right now, so check it out.