Last modified: 2011-01-25 00:33:13 UTC

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Bug 577 - Go and search button are confusing
Go and search button are confusing
Product: MediaWiki
Classification: Unclassified
Search (Other open bugs)
PC All
: Low enhancement with 9 votes (vote)
: ---
Assigned To: Trevor Parscal
Depends on:
Blocks: 19484
  Show dependency treegraph
Reported: 2004-09-26 06:22 UTC by Erik Moeller
Modified: 2011-01-25 00:33 UTC (History)
7 users (show)

See Also:
Web browser: ---
Mobile Platform: ---
Assignee Huggle Beta Tester: ---

mock-up of button/checkbox combo (1.98 KB, image/png)
2004-09-26 06:23 UTC, Erik Moeller

Description Erik Moeller 2004-09-26 06:22:38 UTC
Most people do not intuitively understand the difference between "Go" and "Search".

Using a design with one button and a checkbox "[x] try exact match" is probably
a better idea.
Comment 1 Erik Moeller 2004-09-26 06:23:21 UTC
Created attachment 51 [details]
mock-up of button/checkbox combo
Comment 2 Jamesday 2004-09-26 06:26:38 UTC
Search doesn't and shouldn't try an exact match. Go and search are the correct
functions and descriptions.
Comment 3 Purodha Blissenbach 2006-05-03 18:03:37 UTC
I have not met a single person who understood the sense of either:

  [..user input..]
   [Go]  [Search]

  Find: [..user input..] [Go] [Search]

They usually do after a while of experimenting. (Search disabled - please use Google - of course usually Google 
does not find anything at all on small language wikis - tends to be another disruptive measure)

See also Bug# 5818
Comment 4 Andreas Hartl 2007-01-12 12:47:51 UTC
The Usability Report done in also mentions 
this (section 3.4.1)

I just wanted to suggest a similar feature for unifying "Go" and "Search":

* Go to an article if there exists one for the search term. In that case, be sure to place a link "search all 
articles for <search term>" prominently at the top of the page. This leads to the functionality delivered by 
the full text search today.

* If there was no article found for the search term, deliver the results of a full text search directly.

Additional changes that may make search better usable:

* For power-users, still provide a button that has the functinality of the search button, but _hide it by 
default_ with a CSS style of display: none; power users may make this button visible again using a custon 

* Maybe re-label the combined "Go/Search" button with "Find". According to usability studies, this word is 
(slightly) easier to understand
Comment 5 Aryeh Gregor (not reading bugmail, please e-mail directly) 2007-01-12 18:44:26 UTC
(In reply to comment #4)
> * For power-users, still provide a button that has the functinality of the search button, but 
_hide it by 
> default_ with a CSS style of display: none; power users may make this button visible again using a 
> stylesheet

CSS shouldn't be used for things like this.  What we could do is have a GET parameter that's not 
actually accessible through the default interface, but you could use JavaScript to add a button that 
would access it if you really wanted.
Comment 6 Nathan Slonim 2008-07-16 17:52:01 UTC
Additional changes that would make search intuitive/less confusing:

1) The search textbox should default to a search - not the v1.13 behavior (only if no article found deliver the results of a full text search).

2) Add a checkbox "I'm feeling very lucky" for exact matches (with a default unclicked).

It is not common practice in search nowadays to jumping to an exact match without requesting it explicitly. 
Comment 7 Danny B. 2009-02-18 03:15:42 UTC
r46042 introduced the new optional behavior to show the commonly used pair of "Go" button & "Advanced search" link by setting $wgUseTwoButtonsSearchForm = false; in LocalSettings.php.

Comment 8 Brion Vibber 2009-07-19 18:43:53 UTC
Usability team is working on this issue. :) Assigning to Trevor.
Comment 9 Nux 2010-05-14 06:32:02 UTC
This seems to be kinda done in the Vector:

The problem is the search button does not search! This is a usability fail. The magnifying glass *always* mean "search".
Comment 10 Church of emacs 2010-06-11 08:43:42 UTC
Fixed in Vector skin.

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