SIGIA-L Mail Archives: RE: [Sigia-l] String search question
RE: [Sigia-l] String search question
From: Eric Reiss (elr_at_e-reiss.com)
Date: Wed Oct 22 2003 - 11:01:11 EDT
I assume you're referring to site search tools.
Our experience suggests that people usually expect the site search to
take things pretty literally, video = video.
Users also take the Boolean operator AND for granted if more than one
keyword is entered - even if they don't actually know what a Boolean
They expect the search box to respect a phrase search enclosed in
quotes. Note: people who do phrase searches are generally pretty
So much for the basic expectations.
Most important of all, users desparately want the results page to
give them more than just a page title. An executive summary, or a
short page excerpt (particularly if it highlight the search term)
makes people VERY happy. This is without question the single best way
to improve the usability of a site search engine.
To get back to your question regarding vid = video = david, people
don't usually search for parts of words unless they are experienced
searchers, sloppy, or lazy. The danger in allowing partial word
searches is that you can end up with an idiotically large number of
search returns, which irritates people. On the other hand, a good
thesaurus, hidden in the back, is great for dealing with the problem
of plurals and acknowledging common spelling errors.
Hope this helps.
All my best,
When replying, please *trim your post* as much as possible.
*Plain text, please; NO Attachments
Searchable list archive: http://www.info-arch.org/lists/sigia-l/
Sigia-l mailing list -- post to: Sigia-l_at_asis.org
Changes to subscription: http://mail.asis.org/mailman/listinfo/sigia-l
This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.2
: Sun Nov 23 2003 - 22:55:57 EST