Sorting/display options in Search

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12/16/2012 2:28:51 AM
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Sorting/display options in Search

Hi Joe

When searching the mojoPortal forums, there doesn't appear to be any pattern to the way the results are sorted. I always want recent posts first, because older ones are more likely to be irrelevant or misleading. The forums are generally very useful, but this is reduced when a search finds a ton of unsorted results. I'm now having users giving me "constructive feedback" about the same issues on a site I run.

Similarly, it would be useful in the Search results to be able display the last edit date of the matched item.

I know the same search mechanism covers all features, and a last edited sort may not be appropriate for all, or for all users, but it seems to me it would be a more helpful default than no sort at all. Perhaps there could be a way of configuring the sort for each feature type. 

PS the searching also doesn't seem completely reliable, while testing the sorting, I tried "+load +balancing" expecting this to find this recent thread https://www.mojoportal.com/Forums/Thread.aspx?pageid=5&t=11148~1 but it didn't.

PPS a possible bug, or config error in mojoportal.com: after failing to find that post with my search, I click the link to "Search this site with Google" - but no search controls appear (https://www.mojoportal.com/GoogleSearch.aspx). The Bing option works fine. I've tested in a couple of browsers.

1/4/2013 8:57:29 AM
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Re: Sorting/display options in Search

Hi,

To search more than one word wrap quotes around both ie "load balancing"

Google search is now fixed on this site.

I'm looking into possibilities for improving the search engine.

Best,

Joe

1/20/2013 4:56:35 PM
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Re: Sorting/display options in Search

Hi,

I've recently completed some work on the search index. Checkout our search page on this site and see what you think. This site is running the latest build and has the new search features.

We are now showing the author, created and modified dates in the search results and you can filter on the last modified date with date pickers to narrow in on time. The showing and hiding of those things is configurable.

Note that I didn't end up sorting by date because search needs to sort by the matching logic and the strength of the match. There is a way to sort by fields in lucene but it is very expensive in terms of memory usage because to sort it has to cache an array of the value of that field for every document in the search index. So it would get more expensive the larger the search index gets. Basically it isn't what lucene is optimized for and I decided to stick with its strengths. 

I'm also working on some new experimental features that leverage the search index. Basically I can query the search index for the content by created or modified date so I'm creating a "Recent Content" feature that can list and link to things in a feature agnostic way so long as the feature implements search. It will have a setting for filtering it by feature and a few other settings. I've also created an rss feed that can return the same data if enabled.

Best,

Joe

1/21/2013 1:45:42 AM
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Re: Sorting/display options in Search

Great improvement Joe - this allows us to filter out the older posts when searching the forums.

 

1/21/2013 9:42:09 AM
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Re: Sorting/display options in Search

Hi Joe,

Great addition! I'm really looking forward to the recent content feature as well.

Crispin's last comment got me thinking that the search input in the Forums could benefit from a date filter so one wouldn't have to be directed to the Search Results before they could filter.

Thanks!
Joe D.

1/21/2013 9:48:29 AM
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Re: Sorting/display options in Search

Hey Joe,

If they search they are going to be redirected there anyway and if they don't find what they are looking for on the first results then they can refine their search or filter it further. I don't think we need to crowd the forum page with more inputs and I don't necessarily think that newer forum posts always have the best answer. I think the filters should only be applied if one doesn't find what they are looking for in the initial search.

Best,

Joe

1/21/2013 10:03:58 AM
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Re: Sorting/display options in Search

Hi Joe,

That makes sense.

Thanks,
Joe D.

1/22/2013 10:06:30 AM
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Re: Sorting/display options in Search

I love the changes Joe! That will be very useful for forum searches.

Jamie

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