Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Searching on SourceForge.net

I love SourceForge.net but I have a problem the way their search is structured. I actually didn't want to post this; I wanted to send SourceForge an email. But, I tried finding their email address, I couldn't, and I gave up. Note to SourceForge: Make it easy for users to give you feedback. When you type the SourceForge URL (http://www.sourceforge.net) and go to the home page, the search text box and options show up in the left side of the page. Here's a screenshot. Let's say you have a search string that has more than one word (mailing lists). I assume, since I'm used to Google, that the search engine would throw up results which include all the words in the string. Maybe that's a wrong assumption and I'm okay if it doesn't do what I think it's going to. It's a Yahoo! powered search anyway. What I am not okay with is what happens next. You're taken to a results page, where the search results are displayed. At the top of this page, where the search fields are present, you find a "new" check box with the text Require All Words, as in, require all the words to be present in the search results. Here's a screenshot. So, if I want to include all the words in my search, I have to select this check box. Why didn't they put this in the home page? It would've saved some trouble. Why should I type the search string, click the Search button, and then go to another page where they give me a "new" option. It'll help me if you put it on the main page, and it won't hurt me. I can always ignore the option, if I don't want to use it. Or, change the default, so that when you type a search string with multiple words, it'll include all the words in the search. Then, when you go to the next page, the check box can be selected. Just make my life a little simpler.


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