Saturday, 14 December 2013

Searches

You may have noticed that the Google Blogger Search Gadget has disappeared from my blog. I removed it because it wasn't working. I checked the Search Gadget setup, but in vain, and a little research on the Internet generally has suggested that although Google know their Gadget can go wrong, they aren't minded to give it a priority fix.

It's not a new fault - other people have reported the same thing for some time. Perhaps its search capability is strictly limited, and when the number of posts to look at - or more likely the total number of words to search - becomes too large, it times out and never gets round to producing a result. Even so, I'd expect a Google-made Gadget to cope with (in my case) only 1036 posts, and not more than 733,000 words at the last count. It's just not good enough.

One consequence is that anyone wanting to find something particular is reduced to reading all the post titles one by one, making a shortlist of the most likely posts, and then wading through all of that. What a task!

Getting at each post is easy - you simply look at the Blog Archive on the right-hand edge of this web page - but the post title won't always give away the contents because like everyone else I don't always offer a straightforward post title. Suppose you wanted to search for 'Darth Vader' but couldn't because of the removed Search Gadget. Unless I had told you plainly that 'The tale of my epic battle with Darth Vader, and how I saved the Universe, is in my post titled 'Something useful done on a rainy afternoon' dated 14 November 2010', you might be stuck.

This has its upside of course: Daily Mail reporters seeking salacious copy lifted straight from my canon would need extraordinary patience. I think they'd get tired of my endless blah, blah, blah, give up, and go away. They are busy people with vitally important jobs, after all.

So come on Google, get your finger out.


Sequel
Angie has just emailed me with a fix that works! It doesn't present the search results quite like the previous Blogger Search - you get the posts in full straight off, and there is no intermediate list. It's as if the search process applies a filter that excludes every post except those containing the search word or words. You can also sort the results for date and relevance. Well done, Angie!

3 comments:

  1. Google is not all it is cracked up to be. That's why I am sticking to Word Press. Even their browser has problems and that is why I switched to Firefox.

    Shirley Anne x

    ReplyDelete
  2. I also spotted that the Google Search wasn't working. Shirley Anne's right - the WordPress one worked faultlessly, but I'm not crossing the floor again to join the opposition. Not like Winston Churchill, my dear.

    Perhaps they'll fix it one day. And perhaps the Daily Mail will morph into a respectable newspaper. It's nice to dream.

    ReplyDelete
  3. You would think that an organisation like Google would live up to it's glossy image but it has turned out to just be a thin facade covering a shoddy enterprise.

    We are for ever being told that since we don't pay to provide them with content we should not complain but the failing support is causing me to use it less.

    Blogger now fails to load about 80% of the time!

    Reading list organisation failed well over a year ago with a repeated notice that "we are unable to process you request at the present time". I have just looked and surprise surprise they have actually changed everything without warning and it works again! Then again so many have given up posting!

    One thing few blog sites seem to do at all well is actually let you "read" a blog, just try working through a series of posts in the order they were written LIKE CHAPTERS IN A BOOK for example, Blogger is one of the worst.

    Where is the logical means of actually finding blogs in the first place? I found most which I followed by seeing who made comments on the first blogs I came across and worked on from there. Sadly very few readers like to comment or even follow "publicly". Only by interaction and dialogue do we get real benefit from our writings, few want to interact with an old biddy like me…

    Blogging helped save my life but rather than it having become an essential part of my new life sadly the systems increasing failures seem to be killing it and driving people to flippant twitchy social media sites which do not interest me at all.

    I am so glad that blogging blossomed at just the moment that I needed it and I feel sad for those who follow on who will not get the support and companionship it gave me...

    ReplyDelete

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Lucy Melford