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Fix the Alphabet please! It wasn't BROKEN!

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Once we used the alphabet to find words and titles. 

It was once a grand achievement of humanity itself enabling categorization of words.

You can bring this back.  Some things, like the wheel on land vehicles over higher friction surfaces, we shouldn't change.

Please when I type the exact title in the search box try making that the main selection criteria.

This would enable half way intelligent humans to use your product without callouses from hand slapping one's own face.


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2 hours ago, Drold said:

Please when I type the exact title in the search box try making that the main selection criteria.

Use the intitle: parameter to identify the "main selection criteria"   
for example search     intitle:"the exact title"

The search feature is documented here

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I wonder how big a deal it would be to make the search box smart enough that it recognizes that you're typing an exact title match while you're typing it? Google and the other search engines have that.

Back in the buggy, kludgy EN for Windows app, there's a longstanding problem with responsiveness when typing text in the search box. The interface remains responsive while you type the first 2-3 characters into the search box, and the list of matches updates nicely. But on about the 4th or 5th character, the UI hangs for 5-20 seconds, consistently. This is enough to upset the flow of my typing, as it freezes so hard that it can't even display what I've typed, much less update the possible matches. Worse, when it hangs, if I keep typing (relying on the Evernote version of what Windows calls the type-ahead buffer) it sometimes drops characters, so I can't just keep on typing and trust that what I typed will eventually be seen and processed by the application.

I bring this up here because if you start typing "intitle:<whatever>" it hangs before you get to the : character, *every time without fail*. With patience, intitle: works as documented but because of this hang it is almost useless.

It is time for EN to offer an option to turn off the "live results as you type" feature (or whatever it is called).

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Having to type "intitle" every time you want to search in a title (which is surely one of the main ways people search) is onerous. As has been pointed out by others, imagine searching for, say, "whitehouse" in Google, and the first 30,000 results were obscure books and chat threads that have the word "whitehouse" buried in footnotes or the third page of discussions. This is my experience nearly every time I search for something in Evernote: the relevant results are buried, and I mostly see completely irrelevant notes.

Two options:

  • Evernote fixes search to match typical user expectations
  • Evernote users change their expectations about what a good search function returns

I'd encourage Evernote developers to think about which option is more likely to be successful.

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  • 2 weeks later...

@viverechristus to be clear, you don't have to use intitle: to match on title. In my long experience, an exact title match will be more likely to appear in the search results than an exact body text match, which in turn is more likely than a fuzzy match of title or body text. I think I assumed that the OP knew this, but maybe not?

Part of the problem could be, EN for Win doesn't support sorting results by quality of match.

Besides, no algorithm is perfect, which is why the intitle: modifier exists to force a title match. Intitle: is also helpful if you want a fuzzy title match while excluding exact or fuzzy body text matches.

Upon reflection: For the price, and given that the use case and the search space is very different than e.g. Google, I don't expect EN to have a Google-quality search implementation. EN understands the alphabet just fine. The main problem as I see it is that the Windows client hangs while typing your search (and not just when using intitle:). In previous versions, search was nice & responsive, assuming your PC itself wasn't slow.

Edited by John in Michigan USA
Clarify that I changed my position somewhat
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