[Rd] RFC: What should ?foo do?

Duncan Murdoch murdoch at stats.uwo.ca
Fri Apr 25 16:57:16 CEST 2008

On 4/25/2008 10:41 AM, Simon Urbanek wrote:
> On Apr 25, 2008, at 8:46 AM, Peter Dalgaard wrote:
>> Duncan Murdoch wrote:
>>> I haven't done it, but I suspect we could introduce special behaviour
>>> for ??foo very easily.  We could even have a whole hierarchy:
>>> ?foo, ??foo, ???foo, ????foo, ...
>> Heh, that's rather nice, actually. In words, that could read
>> ?foo: tell me about foo!
>> ??foo: what can you tell me about foo?
>> ???foo: what can you tell me about things like foo?
>> ????foo: I don't know what I'm looking for but it might be something
>> related foo?
>> You do have to be careful about messing with ?, though. I think many
>> people, including me, would pretty quickly go nuts if ?par suddenly
>> didn't work the way we're used to.
> I strongly agree with that.
> One potential way out could be to offer some extended fall-back in  
> case the man page doesn't exist. (I'm not sure I like that, either,  
> but I could get used to it ;).)
> I don't really have a problem with status quo and I think if you want  
> proper advanced searches, you should be using (or implementing them)  
> in the GUIs anyway. That is what the new users will be using (and  
> looking for) in the first place. If they have to count the question  
> marks instead, they won't know about it (although I like the idea for  
> advanced users).

I'd like to try to have the search common across all platforms, but the 
GUIs could present it and the results in their own way.

Duncan Murdoch

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