"Searching by exact phrase is not supported on this board."

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Professor Hastig
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"Searching by exact phrase is not supported on this board."

Post by Professor Hastig »

I got the above message when trying to search for a two word phrase.

Is there a reason why this is inactive? With the current settings it is impossible to search for certain terms because they occur so frequently that specialization is needed to find things.
SanyaWaffles
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Re: "Searching by exact phrase is not supported on this board."

Post by SanyaWaffles »

I noticed this too. It renders searching pretty much useless for me.
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Caligari87
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Re: "Searching by exact phrase is not supported on this board."

Post by Caligari87 »

From what I can tell, this isn't a setting I can toggle; It's a limitation of the search engine used on the backend.

Our options are:
  • phpBB Native Fulltext
  • MySQL Fulltext
  • Sphinx Fulltext
  • PostgreSQL Fulltext (this is the one currently active and indexed)
Some initial research of the problem seems to indicate that MySQL Fulltext might have this feature but also suggest that fiddling with the backing database on the forum will be required. For example, this post from 2008. I'm not confident in manipulating SQL databases, and changing search engines will require rebuilding the search index (which takes time and server space).

For whatever it's worth, search engines like Bing and Google have indexed our forum pretty extensively, so a query on Google like site:forum.zdoom.org "my first map" seems to return expected exact phrase results, though filtering down by author and other criteria is obviously going to be more difficult than the native solution.

8-)
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Graf Zahl
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Re: "Searching by exact phrase is not supported on this board."

Post by Graf Zahl »

Forum search is in such a miserable state in general... :(
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Re: "Searching by exact phrase is not supported on this board."

Post by Professor Hastig »

I really don't understand why forum search is so bad.

There's some terms that are virtually impossible to find because of orthographic 'correction', alias terms and what not. Try to search for words like OpenAL and the search engine 'helpfully' corrects this to whatever. The result is I find thousands of posts with no relation to the search term. Another one I recently noticed is GLOOME (yes, that old ZDoom based engine) The relevant searches get drowned in an endless list of 'gloom'. It's really depressing. Where's that CRITICAL option of "use words as typed" to disable that stupid aliasing algorithm that never works right?

Also, thanks to Ken Silverman for naming his engine "Build". Good luck finding that in a see of text that frequently contains the verb 'to build'...
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Re: "Searching by exact phrase is not supported on this board."

Post by yum13241 »

Use Google search by site.
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Re: "Searching by exact phrase is not supported on this board."

Post by SanyaWaffles »

I think people's complaints are that the built in search is pretty much useless. Telling them to use something else in the long term is not ideal.
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Graf Zahl
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Re: "Searching by exact phrase is not supported on this board."

Post by Graf Zahl »

Google also applies some annoying heuristics to their search which makes it just as useless most of the time
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randi
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Re: "Searching by exact phrase is not supported on this board."

Post by randi »

Lame. The unofficial PostgreSQL search from the pre-upgrade forum could do it.
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Re: "Searching by exact phrase is not supported on this board."

Post by Xeotroid »

Graf Zahl wrote: Fri Jul 21, 2023 1:52 pm Google also applies some annoying heuristics to their search which makes it just as useless most of the time
Google Search annoys me more and more. Quality of search results aside (which have been on a steady decline), some of the recent interface decisions are awful.
Some time ago they'd decided that the buttons for search types (websites, images, books, maps etc.) should reorder dynamically based on the search query. Sometimes the first button is for images like normal, other times it's for shopping or maps, so don't go around clicking based on muscle memory.
Recently they've added search modifiers into the same tray mixed in with the search types – search for, say, chicken vindaloo, and the tray contains buttons for images, videos, then suddenly "calories", "authentic", and "SHU".
Just a couple of days ago, infinite scrolling for the search results page got briefly activated for me. Funny how even Google implements it without taking the page footer into consideration, so it was unreachable unless you pressed the End key a couple of times, loading a couple of pages of search results for no reason. Not that the footer is particularly useful, but it's sloppy.
And don't even get me started on the reverse image search getting basically useless after Google Lens replaced it on desktop.

Just so that I don't go completely off-topic, this inability to search for exact word matches is aggravating on Discord too, but that thing is also slow, irreplaceable with Google, and confined to a small sidebar, so, things could always be worse.
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Graf Zahl
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Re: "Searching by exact phrase is not supported on this board."

Post by Graf Zahl »

randi wrote: Fri Jul 21, 2023 9:20 pm Lame. The unofficial PostgreSQL search from the pre-upgrade forum could do it.
Don't you mean pre-downgrade...? :twisted:
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Re: "Searching by exact phrase is not supported on this board."

Post by yum13241 »

The things I miss from the old forum are the actually usable top bar and the old ZDoom Blue theme. The DRDTeam one is close but makes blacks extra hard to read. If advertizers can have exact matches, we should too.
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randi
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Re: "Searching by exact phrase is not supported on this board."

Post by randi »

Graf Zahl wrote: Mon Jul 24, 2023 3:43 pm Don't you mean pre-downgrade...? :twisted:
Unfortunately, staying on the old forum version would have also meant staying on an old PHP version that was no longer getting any updates. I hear (but haven't confirmed) that things are better now, but PHP has had a bad habit of breaking backwards compatibility with itself by slowly undoing bad decisions that were made earlier in its life. :glare:
Professor Hastig wrote: Thu Jul 20, 2023 12:41 am Try to search for words like OpenAL and the search engine 'helpfully' corrects this to whatever.
"Open." It gets stemmed to just "open." I'm pretty sure I can mark specific words to not do that. So aside from these two ("openal" and "gloome"), what others are there that should get this treatment? I won't make this change right away; it requires rebuilding the text search indexes, which will basically bring the forum to its knees for around 10 minutes, I believe. But if I can assemble a list of words, I'll do it the next time I upgrade the database.

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