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Add Help namespace to default search on all wikis
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Description

Split from:

(In reply to MZMcBride from bug 52817 comment #35)

If many users are customizing their search settings, we're doing something
wrong.

(In reply to Quiddity from bug 52817 comment #40)

Searching for help documentation is HELL unless we add the Wikipedia: ,
Help: , and Template: namespaces to our default search. For the first few
years as a new editor, I was constantly searching those namespaces for tools
and guides. (Note that the Template: and Category: namespaces aren't
included in the "Help and Project pages" output)

That tab was removed: https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/#/c/132965/1 Which makes sense for most MediaWiki installations but not for Wikimedia projects editors.

Until bug 22774 is fixed or some hook is found to add the tab again on Wikimedia projects, I think we must add Help to $wgNamespacesToBeSearchedDefault on all wikis: results from it will mostly be what users expect, when they come up.

Personally I recommend against Project, or even worse Template, because on many wikis they contain an entire ghost project, often with article-like titles and content. See for instance some Wikipedias which have almost a *million* pages in either, extreme right of https://stats.wikimedia.org/EN/TablesCurrentStatusVerbose.htm


Version: unspecified
Severity: enhancement
URL: https://meta.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=Wikimedia_Forum&oldid=8891410#Including_.22Help.22_namespace_in_default_search
See Also:
T74196: Bring back shortcut to search in "Help and Project pages"

Details

Reference
bz66066

Event Timeline

bzimport raised the priority of this task from to Lowest.Nov 22 2014, 3:26 AM
bzimport set Reference to bz66066.
bzimport added a subscriber: Unknown Object (MLST).

(In reply to Nemo from comment #0)

That tab was removed: https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/#/c/132965/1 Which
makes sense for most MediaWiki installations but not for Wikimedia projects
editors.

Yes it does make sense to remove from WMF wikis. We looked at the logs for searching and less than 0.01% of searches ever use these tabs.

Until bug 22774 is fixed or some hook is found to add the tab again on
Wikimedia projects, I think we must add Help to
$wgNamespacesToBeSearchedDefault on all wikis: results from it will mostly
be what users expect, when they come up.

There is a hook already, SpecialSearchProfiles. I'm unconvinced we should use it to readd the tab. The idea here is to de-clutter that area of search.

(In reply to Chad H. from comment #2)

(In reply to Nemo from comment #0)

That tab was removed: https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/#/c/132965/1 Which
makes sense for most MediaWiki installations but not for Wikimedia projects
editors.

Yes it does make sense to remove from WMF wikis. We looked at the logs for
searching and less than 0.01% of searches ever use these tabs.

Sure. I didn't say WMF wikis, I said Wikimedia projects *editors*. Of course they are a minuscule percentage of the visitors and searchers.

(In reply to Chad H. from comment #2)

There is a hook already, SpecialSearchProfiles.

Does it allow per-group configuration? (Not actually proposing it, just throwing ideas.)

I'm unconvinced we should
use it to readd the tab. The idea here is to de-clutter that area of search.

I am as well :) , hence the simpler proposal to add a handful hundreds more pages (Help ns) to default search.

We don't nee this tab, but wikis certainy want a better way to produce specific search boxes that will look in some namespace or category.

These custom boxes will also be tuned to the place where they will be used (they can't be necessarily the same in the main namespace, in the Template namespace and in the Project namespace, or in user talk pages: eahc namespace want their own local tuning). For that, wikis will develop some templates that cn be inserted in their pages (so avoid duplicating other search boxes elsewhere in the page as they cause confusion).

But the basic default search box of the wiki should only search in the main namespace (or possibly just in the current namespace where the default searchbox is viewed).

Ayway users can customize their prefered search spaces by adding a few ones if they want to add them to the default search box. They can also add gadgets to their user page to modify or complement this default search box.

Also I don't like that the default search uses the "I feel lucky" strategy used by default and that brings up directly to a found page (just because its name matches exactly the search string), without using a first landing page of results where extra seach options can be adjusted before following a link. Searching does not mean that we want to visit that page.

Ok, let's proceed: we have a supermajority and only one oppose.

Change 139819 had a related patch set uploaded by Odder:
Add Help namespace to default search on all wikis

https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/139819

Change 139819 abandoned by Odder:
Add Help namespace to default search on all wikis

Reason:
Apparently not yet possible for us to do.

I will restore the patch when there is technical infrastructure to handle this enhancement.

https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/139819

Not ready for shell yet; please refer to Nik's comment on the Gerrit patch for further information.

I put back community-consensus-needed per comment 5 misrepresentation and Gerrit patch Anomie comment.

In comment 5, Nemo speaks about a "supermajority". One could expect a supermajority is more than 4 people voting for, even when meaning 80%! This is an omission of a key information.

In the Gerrit review, Anomie said "I'd really want to see consensus for this that isn't just a handful of people on Meta. Let's not give people the opportunity to bring out the "In a locked filing cabinet in a disused lavatory behind a door that said 'Beware of the tiger'" quote again."

(In reply to Dereckson from comment #9)

In comment 5, Nemo speaks about a "supermajority". One could expect a
supermajority is more than 4 people voting for, even when meaning 80%!

Sorry if I used the term "supermajority" with an unexpected meaning.

The [[m:Wikimedia Forum]] *is* the appropriate place where to discuss configuration defaults, it always was. In fact the topic has then received more attention later; but we're talking of an extremely trivial change, which would increase the number of searched pages by about 0.07 % on average, so I wouldn't be surprised by a low participation.

Where was the community consensus to remove the search for "Help and project pages"?

Why do we always have double standards around here?

Code changes to the software itself is exempted from community consensus as the community does not control an open source piece of software, the developers do.

Declined per T124354. There is no consensus for this change yet. Please reopen the task if consensus reached.