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Super Search discouraged?

by wojtyk (Friar)
on May 16, 2007 at 17:02 UTC ( #615838=monkdiscuss: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??

This is more of a Perlmonks accessibility question.

I frequently hear more venerable monks chiding younger monks (sometimes quite curtly) about not using Super Search to answer their question before posting in Seekers. Well, when I was a younger monk, I didn't even realize the functionality existed, as it is tucked away and blending in with the corner menus and nowhere near the main "quick search" textbox.

Specifically I'm questioning this design choice. Wouldn't it make more sense to have either a second Super Search textbox next to the Search textbox, or even better, a single textbox with a radio button toggle between Search and Super Search?

It seems it would make sense to make the Super Search more accessible and easier to spot by newbies and casual monks.
Any opinions?

Comment on Super Search discouraged?
Re: Super Search discouraged?
by ysth (Canon) on May 16, 2007 at 17:28 UTC
    When you use the normal "Search" and land on the Search Results page, you should notice the
    To search more than just titles, try Super Search or Google for site:www.perlmonks.org foo bar.
    Perhaps that should be in a bigger font, since bold doesn't seem to make it stand out?
      In most cases, I'll just use the normal search. And if I can't find from its result (which is rare), I turn to the Super Search. So, I find it quite intuitive as ysth points out. If I do know in advanced what I need, I go directly to the Super Search menu on the top right.

      Update: 25-05-2007 Fixed node title to follow the parent change. (I thought it was automatic :D)


      Open source softwares? Share and enjoy. Make profit from them if you can. Yet, share and enjoy!

        In most cases, I'll just use the normal search.

        In most cases, I found it simply doesn't fit my needs. So I eventually got into the habit of going straight to the Super Search. Of course I've been here for quite some time and probably all this doesn't apply to newbies, which is the issue the OP was concentrating on.

      Well that's not always true either.

      For example, when I went looking for posts with "Super Search" in the title and typed "Super Search" into the searchbox, it took me straight to the Super Search page.
      I've had similar experiences when searching for articles on common Perl modules...I recently searched on "crypt" and I was taken straight to the crypt perldoc
      Each of these gave no option to go elsewhere.

      And in the cases where the "To search more than just titles" line appears...Perhaps it's just me, but my eyes immediately key on the results, semi-ignoring the surrounding text. I mean, who really fully groks the whole "Below are some nodes whose titles contain these words..." line every time they do a search? Instead, the eyes just subconsciously glance over that information and go straight to the results. Where the bold probably helps for the Super Search recommendation line, I guess it didn't help enough in my case ;)

        For example, when I went looking for posts with "Super Search" in the title and typed "Super Search" into the searchbox, it took me straight to the Super Search page.
        Unfortunately, we have just the one box doing both search & goto functionality. Separating these two would be good. As a workaround, to force a search just drop off a letter: cryp, Super Searc.
        Perhaps it's just me, but my eyes immediately key on the results, semi-ignoring the surrounding text.
        I don't think it's just you. Do you think bigger text would help?
Re: Super Search discouraged?
by jdporter (Canon) on May 16, 2007 at 21:03 UTC

    Besides what ysth said, there's also the fact that the site FAQ (which you can reach by clicking the Need Help?? link near the top of every page) has a section on Searching PerlMonks, wherein you would learn about Super Search, if you didn't already know about it.
    Should the Need Help?? link be more prominent?

    If you haven't perused the PerlMonks FAQ... well, there's no time like the present.

    There's also a Super Search link included in the "menu" of links at the top right of every page.

    Also, if you go to your Nodelet Settings and add the Find Nodes nodelet, you'll find a Super Search link in that nodelet, as well.

    A word spoken in Mind will reach its own level, in the objective world, by its own weight
      This got me thinking if in some way the Super Search can be implemented as nodelet so one is opt to put it permanently on the side bar via Nodelet Settings.

      Open source softwares? Share and enjoy. Make profit from them if you can. Yet, share and enjoy!

        That's not such a good idea. The content of Super Search (the page) is pretty huge. If we put it in a nodelet, it would be by far the largest nodelet around. Nodelets are supposed to be small. Besides, Super Search is never more than a single mouse click away.

        Looking at it from another angle, there's nothing in the content of Super Search (the page) that requires special handling on the server side; it's just a generic form. That means you could easily make your own "mini-SuperSearch" form in your Free Nodelet, with just the fields you want. See below for an example.

        A word spoken in Mind will reach its own level, in the objective world, by its own weight
Re: Super Search discouraged?
by Trihedralguy (Pilgrim) on May 21, 2007 at 15:47 UTC
    I think super search should be used where Search is at the top of all the pages. It doesn't make sense to "half ass" search, then have the user search again.
    Also, as a HUGE perl noob and new user to PerlMonks, when I first started using this site it was very wierd. (I come from forms and BB's like phpbb, smf, and YABBSE.) Which is night and day compared to this website. The navigation of this website is also screwy at first because I didnt know like "The Monastery Gates" is like the index and if I want to ask a question I have to goto Seekers of Perl Wisdom and then scroll down to the bottom. (at least thats the way I still do it.)
    My two cents...
    I think keeping it hard to use is a good thing though cause it tries to weed out stupid users like myself :)

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