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Suggestion PF Search

  1. Jul 18, 2009 #1
    Is there any way that PF could just implement http://www.google.com/sitesearch/" [Broken] as the default search? There was a similar post below how about a user has been having problems with search, and I thought I would turn my response into a suggestion thread. I almost always use Google to search PF anyways, because my search results here are not worth much. Also, the one search every 30 seconds is pretty annoying.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 18, 2009 #2
    If you already use google to search the site why do you need them to implement it as the default? Just continue doing what you're doing...
  4. Jul 18, 2009 #3
    Seriously? Then why even implement search on PF in the first place if something else works better? I'm sure some things rely on the current search, especially with things tied to certain data like user names, but it would be nice if when I search something in the general search box that something relevant plus a small snippet comes up. Maybe it isn't that big of a deal and people can just continue to do what works best for them, but it seems you don't want people leaving your site to perform a function that your site has.
  5. Jul 19, 2009 #4


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    PF search allows you to specify user name, sub-forum, choice to show threads started by user or all posts, searching by tags, sorting results by date and more. How would you do any of that on Google?
  6. Jul 19, 2009 #5
    Well that's what I mentioned in the last post. I know that there is some specific data that the current search has good use of, but maybe just for the basic search Google could be used. For instance, when I click on the search arrow and then type something in the box without doing an advanced search, Google's site search could be used. Then if I wanted something more specific in terms of the extra data that forums use, such as date, user name, sub-forum, etc., the current search could be used. Google's search is accurate enough that I'm guessing it would be enough for a lot of use cases.

    By the way, I linked to Google's site search, which is not a free service and seems to be pointed towards businesses. That's not what I meant. I think I meant their custom search.
  7. Jul 24, 2009 #6
    No comments on the topic of only one search every 30 seconds? Is this to cut down on server activity or something else?
  8. Jul 24, 2009 #7


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    I guess there must be a reason for the 30-second rule, but I agree it's aggravating. Especially if you realize too late you've simply misspelled a search word :grumpy:...30 seconds seems so long when you're just sitting there feeling stupid, haha.
  9. Jul 25, 2009 #8


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    I believe that the 30 second limit is indeed imposed to help preserve the server resources. The PF database contains a huge number of posts and I imagine that searching this database requires a significant amount of resources from the server.
  10. Sep 4, 2009 #9
    Okay, sorry to bring up this old post, but the search is very frustrating. A quick search for "QFT" in the sub-forum Science Book Discussion just brought up no matches, even as I'm staring directly at a recent thread with QFT in the title. How is this search useful at all besides searching for database tags like usernames?
  11. Sep 4, 2009 #10


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    Could be three letter words are considered meaningless and not indexed.
  12. Sep 4, 2009 #11

    The search system was not created by the administrators of this site. It's vBulletin. There's not a whole lot anyone is going to do about it. (They could, but they won't. It's a complicated process to change the way the forum itself operates and I'm assuming that this is still the default.)

    And yes, the 30 second limit is to preserve server resources. A lot of people searching at once, and over and over again saps the heck out of it. I used to post on a forum that had a 5 minute limit because they couldn't keep the site from going down.
  13. Sep 4, 2009 #12


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    I think the best advice is just to use the google site specific search, unless you want to search for things like "posts from user" or "tags". That's what I do, anyway.
  14. Sep 4, 2009 #13


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    I understand having a time limit imposed between posts, to slow down things like bot attacks, but it is frustrating on searches. I've encountered the same thing, either I typed something wrong, or clicked the wrong subforum, or even just know that there are a couple variants of a word or description for something that I want to try, and when no results come up with one, I don't want to keep sitting there waiting just to try the next variation.

    But maybe that 30 second rule can't be applied only to specific tasks on vB software and has to apply to everything or nothing? If it can be changed just on searches, that would be great (or maybe it has already been changed recently and I didn't try it yet).

    As for the utility of the search in general, I mostly find it useful when searching specific subforums, especially if a term I'm searching is used often at PF. If I want to search all the forums, especially for a fairly old post, or something that might be misspelled (either by me or the person who created the thread...PF's search is fairly sensitive to spelling), then Google works better. Though, there are websites with those google search bars that allow you to search the web or just that site, and whenever I've used those, they also turn up a lot of irrelevant junk too. I don't know how much it costs to get one of those either, and it may not be worth the cost for a site like this that is mostly funded by contributions and ads just to break even.
  15. Sep 5, 2009 #14
    The reason the 30 second rule is applied to searches (and only searches) is that it kills the server. Bot attacks notwithstanding it's still a drain... in fact I doubt bot attacks really happen here. It's there because people often make mistakes while searching, then search again, and maybe again. If fifty people are all doing this it can add up quickly. The forum will just slow down for everyone anyway.

    But if I'm not mistaken don't PF Contributors only get the priveledge of using search? If that's the case then I don't really see why it's needed as there aren't hundreds of us active at any given time. (At least, I don't think there are.)
  16. Sep 5, 2009 #15
    No, everyone can use the search feature...I've never visited a forum that didn't have a free search. Thank god PF doesn't use google search, it is so frustrating to me that some forums do use google search because it's not comprehensive, and posts are constantly being dropped out of existence in the searchable history making them impossible to find. It's extremely annoying!!
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