I'm always excited to discover something new while searching on eBay, but I've been around long enough to know that there's virtually no such thing as "one of a kind."
When you've found an item you're interested in, it's often helpful to look for other auctions for similar items, either to compare prices or perhaps to find something better. Typically, this requires opening a search box and typing the name of the item for which to search. Here's a quick hack that will eliminate these steps and list similar items with a single click.
Then, open any auction page and click the new link, as shown in Figure 2-2. (Naturally, the hack won't work on a non-auction page.) A new window will appear with search results matching the title of the auction you were just looking at, which, in theory, should contain at least one auction. At this point, you can modify and repeat the search as needed.
Customizing the Links Bar
Modern web browsers such as Netscape, Internet Explorer, and Mozilla all have a customizable toolbar called the Links bar. The Links bar, shown in Figure 2-2, is nothing more than a small collection of easily accessible bookmarks (a.k.a. favorites, shortcuts, links) that you can click to open the corresponding pages.
The easiest way to add a custom button to the Links bar is to simply drag-and-drop the URL shortcut icon (to the immediate left of the URL) onto the bar to add the current page. Or drag any link from any open web page, bookmark, favorite, or Internet shortcut onto the Links bar.
Next comes the URL to open. The first part of the URL is taken from a standard eBay search URL, as seen in [Hack #12]:
The query parameter is then completed by including the title of the currently displayed auction:
document.title.substring(document.title.indexOf(' - '),document.title.length)
This last bit of code extracts the auction title from the page title by taking only the text that appears after the hyphen (with spaces on either side) that separates the end date from the auction title.
By default, this hack searches only auction titles. To search both titles and descriptions, add the &sotextsearched=2 parameter to the URL, making sure to place it before the &query parameter, like this:
A variation of this hack might be used to search completed auctions instead of current auctions, which may be useful for finding how similar items have previously sold or possibly seeing if the specific item on which you're bidding is being resold. Just change the URL to that of a completed item search, like this:
Note that eBay will complain if you try to show complete auctions and search titles and descriptions at the same time, since completed items can be searched only by their titles.