For those familiar with OSX, the behavior I'm looking for is
open -g http://google.com, which will open a google webpage in the default browser in the background, without switching focus to it at all.
I've been testing on stock Natty (Gnome, Unity...) with Chrome and then Firefox set to the default browser. I've tried both
gnome-open http://google.com and
xdg-open http://google.com, and with or without appending
&>/dev/null & to the end, the browser window always gets focused. The only case where the browser doesn't get focus is when the default is Firefox and there is already a Firefox window open. I've also tried just calling
google-chrome directly, and neither of them work.
Is there some combination of commands or a package I could use to get the desired behavior more reliably, regardless of whether the default browser is Chrome or Firefox, or whether there's already a window open? This is for software to be installed on others' machines, so modifying their browser profiles is not really a solution...