updated forum search

hi there,

i wanted to give a little feedback on the new forum search.
i kind of get why people wished for this change in the display of the search results, but i think it does more harm than good and it's quite obstructive. at least to my workflow in the forum - so this might be a very personal experience.
here is why:

i've been using the forum extensively in the last month, using it to build my first real plugin. i had (and still have) tons of questions and problems to solve. but i rarely had to open new topics, because this forum is so rich and full of good examples. i would just enter a search and crawl through the results and code snippets. with the new condensed search results it feels super impractical to me now. lets say i search for some terms, that wont show up in the title but only further down. now the term is hidden in the shortened part of the search result. i have to hover over the post to unfold it. if it's a long post my term will still be off screen, so i have to scroll down this post. and repeat this with 10 posts per site. all this unfolding and folding makes it quite hard to keep track of where i'm at, instead of focusing on the real task at hand: finding the an answer to my search. it feels like all the gems and knowledge i could stumble upon is now hidden in tiny little boxes. - with the old style, i could calmly scroll down an catch everything. even if it was a long scroll.

i really don't want to be dismissive about how other people need the search to work, but for me it took just a few hours and my brain refused using the search function.

so, i would kindly ask to revert this change.
or even better, maybe there could be a checkbox in the advanced search setting - this way everyone could get what they wanted.

cheers, sebastian

@datamilch
Hi dude , I think it is a compromise for the forum( I think @ferdinand mentioned it is NodeBB ) ,it can't fold the long codes , so they fold all the post , maybe a little option to set by user is a good option.

by the way , it is a little annoying now , but better for me to look for a loooong codes.

Cheers~!

Hello @datamilch,

Thank you for reaching out to us. Just as an FYI, you should be able to reply to postings made in Maxon Announcements. Starting a new discussion here in the General Talk forum is also okay, I am just pointing it out in case we gave off the impression that comments are not allowed or welcome in the Maxon Announcements forum.

As already pointed out by @Dunhou, the amount of time I can invest here is quite limited, and that people have different search behaviors is not exactly a surprise for me:

There will certainly be people who want the direct opposite, i.e., very verbose results. The common way to implement that would be an option in the user preferences but we do not have the resources for that. So, I picked a hover-based solution, trying to make all parties at least a bit happy; but which is a little bit clunky UI-wise.

And just to be clear here, I understand that user search behaviors are always 'correct' in the personal context of a user, there are no 'wrong' search behaviors. I also understand that users tend to be passionate about how they search for information and what they consider to be an acceptable search effort and what not.

But as expressed in my quote, the search behaviors of users also often tend to collide. In fancier systems this can be dealt with account settings. But I do not have the time to do this, as this would be quite a bit of work. As a compromise I have disabled condensed search results in the dark skin of the forum, the default light-skin remains with condensed results.

When I have time at some point, I might implement a JS hack which injects a toggle feature into a loaded search result page. A preference in the user settings is too expensive to do as I would have to touch the server and NodeBB implementation itself for that.

Cheers,
Ferdinand

MAXON SDK Specialist
developers.maxon.net

hi @ferdinand,
thanks for your response!

Actually I was not able to respond in the Announcement forum. I just looked again and there is no reply button for me.

Regarding the search mode, I fully understand the different behaviors. Just had the urge to give this feedback, so i can move on.
I really appreciate your 'hacky' solution with the dark-mode, thank you! :smile_cat:

just a thought for consistency: since the condensed feature seems to be skin related, couldn't there be 4 skins - light condensed and uncondensed and dark condensed and uncondensed ... but since i don't know, how you did it, maybe this might become to cluttered in your backend. aaanyways ...

have a nice day!

Hey @datamilch,

@datamilch said in updated forum search:

Actually I was not able to respond in the Announcement forum. I just looked again and there is no reply button for me.

Good that you point that out, that was not intentional. The recent forum update might have changed the privileges. I have again given registered users the ability to reply to topics in this forum. Creating new topics in this forum is still restricted to moderators.

Regarding the search mode, I fully understand the different behaviors. Just had the urge to give this feedback, so i can move on.
I really appreciate your 'hacky' solution with the dark-mode, thank you! :smile_cat:

Yeah, I understand and truly appreciate that. I was just trying to explain that what might seem as 'absolutely correct' from one user's perspective, might be the opposite from another.

just a thought for consistency: since the condensed feature seems to be skin related, couldn't there be 4 skins - light condensed and uncondensed and dark condensed and uncondensed ... but since i don't know, how you did it, maybe this might become to cluttered in your backend.

NodeBB has skins and themes (two different things). The theme our forum is based on, which is effectively a NodeBB plugin, has its own setting which is also called skin (because everything else would be too easy, right :D ). That skin has nothing to do with the NodeBB notion of a skin and its elements cannot be extended (without messing with the source) as far as I know. That custom skin is what users see as default and dark skin.

The easiest solution would be to inject some custom JS which listens for search result page events and then injects one or multiple toggle buttons and their associated logic into that page. The result will be then that one can toggle the folded state of all results on a page with one click (more or less what is currently already possible in the search options). But one would have to do this single click on each result page. Anything which is more persistent than that is too much work.

Cheers,
Ferdinand

MAXON SDK Specialist
developers.maxon.net