[Wasabi Proposal] End user search language

Mikkel Kamstrup Erlandsen mikkel.kamstrup at gmail.com
Sat Feb 17 06:30:17 PST 2007

2007/2/16, Liam R E Quin <liam at holoweb.net>:
> On Wed, 2007-14-02 at 14:29 +0100, Mikkel Kamstrup Erlandsen wrote:
> [...]
> >
> > Also, I must say that I've got cold feet with regards to let OR have
> > precedence over AND. Is it not safe to assume that people that use
> > logical operators (which I'm willing to bet is a minority) knows that
> > AND usually takes precedence over OR?
> No, not safe.
> The most effective interpretation of (a AND b) I have seen is to use
> quorum ranking -- first list things containing both, then list
> things containing either, and for (a AND b AND c) sort results
> by the number of terms matched.  And this is what some of the
> Web search engines do, too.
> There's no good answer, though, I think.  You have to do user testing.

The sorting would be up to the to the search engine backend. It is mainly
the interpretation of the language we should be focusing on. But I agree -
it is nice include terms also matched by either term. On the other hand this
rules out automated usages of the languages from other apps (they might want
exact matches only) - but the xml language is more suitable for that

Perhaps we should allow "fuzziness" like this in the results from a user
query... It might have unwanted consequences though, so it should take some
consideration. It might be better to advise end-user-apps to expand a "A AND
B" query to something more forgiving...

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