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January 7, 2005

A Bit More On Livesearch And Movable Type //

It’s been about two weeks since I posted the Livesearch functionality tutorial here and in the time I’ve been looking at the SQL query to see if there’s room for improvement.

I noticed that some of the results for certain queries didn’t make sense. What I realized I had forgotten was that it’s raw, Markdown formatted text stored in the database tables and the results reflect all positive matches to the string a user submits through the feature. This includes matching bits of URL strings…

In effect what I thought was wrong, wasn’t. It was a matter of false expectations of what the results should be, that they weren’t as good as they should be or that I had made a mistake with the query. The query correctly checks against the entry_text entry_title fields. Taking this a step further, we could add MySQL’s full-text search to make searching even more robust.

Another small catch to keep in mind is that searches are case-insensitive meaning that a search for “Apple” should yield the same results as “apple”.

The point I’m trying to make here is simply that you should look closely at the results to ensure that everything is working as you expect. Test a handful of queries using the command line or some other database management tool.

Other Examples Of Using XMLHTTPRequest

This XMLHTTPRequest thing is really starting to take off now that newer browsers are supporting the feature more consistently and that the web community has started to take notice.

As a result you’ll likely see the Livesearch functionality cropping up on more and more blogs/websites in the near future and in more innovative and creative ways. Two other excellent examples of the XMLHTTPRequest object can be found over at map.search.ch and of course Google Suggest.

So say you…

Excellent! Thanks Arvind. I’m going to give this a good look and see if I can incorporate these improvements with the regular Livesearch functionality.

Scott Scott January 9, 2005

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