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Re: Apropos commands and regexps

From: Kim F. Storm
Subject: Re: Apropos commands and regexps
Date: 17 May 2002 00:26:43 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.09 (Gnus v5.9.0) Emacs/21.2.50

Miles Bader <address@hidden> writes:

> address@hidden (Kim F. Storm) writes:
> > I don't like the "and" approach -- at least not as the default.
> > (see my previous posting for the rationale).
> `and' is the defautl for all search engines that I've used, and has the
> advantage of being simple and easy to understand.

A quick test shows that Google, Yahoo, Lycos uses AND
while Altavista, Excite, AskJeeves uses OR.

That's 50/50...

For WEB search engines, I think AND does make sense -- since there
are SOOOO many pages to match.  But for a limited universe like
emacs -- which doesn't always use the most obvious terms --
using AND doesn't make a lot of sense to me.

> Perhaps your idea of `2 or more' would work better in practice, but
> it's hard to say without some real experience.

I think it is adequate in practice.

> > Comparing to WEB search engines, I don't think that separating
> > keywords with commas is common practice...
> No, but it's common practice in writing lists.

I don't see the relevance, sorry.  But of course, we could ignore
commas in case people use them...

> > Consider searching for "grep" -- shouldn't that return "igrep" ?
> Good point; I guess maybe it shouldn't do any anchoring at all (bit
> annoying, that, since I often get lots of false hits when my apropos
> term unexpectedly happens to occur in the middle of a common english
> word...).

We could put a "button bar" at the top of the apropos output with
the following buttons:

 [Match all words]  [anchored match]  [search documentation]

Kim F. Storm <address@hidden> http://www.cua.dk

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