Improvements to WPMUDEV forum search results

First, here are some problems I face in searching these forums. I'll follow with requests to address them.
When I specifically select a forum, like Plugins & Themes, and then do a Search, I don't want to see results from other groups, especially at the top of the list, when more relevant results are somewhere in later pages.
Further, I have no idea how old the results are until they're opened. I generally don't want details on problems or solutions that haven't been valid for over a year. Though of course old wisdom can be eternal and sometimes I don't want to eliminate old posts either.
I don't know which search mechanism you're using, whether the default for Wordpress, Google, bbPress, or some plugin. Therefore I don't know what syntax is available to help refine searches. Better searches and results make this a more valuable resource. As an example, if I say "custom post type template", am I going to get hits with only that text? With any of the words? Do quotes help?
In the tech industry in general we use abbreviations. I'd like to be able to find a discussion on custom post types without having to specify both "custom post type" and "CPT". And if I do say CPT, I'd like to hits where maybe only CPTT was used.

So please...
1) Enhance Search so that searching from ALL will return results from ALL, but searching from a specific category/forum will only return results from that area.
2) Add the original posting date to the search results/excerpt.
3) Add an option to sort search results By Asc/Desc Date or Relevance.
4) Document how we can best use the search here. Do we use something like "+PluginName +Function" or "PluginName AND Function"? Is "PluginName Function" and And or an Or? Are the words taken together only with quotes? Or is everything in the search box considered a literal search string? Is there any provision for Date or Author?
5) What is the shortest number of characters allowed? And is there a way to associate synonyms, so that if I say CPT, the results will include anything with "custom post type" too?

Thanks as always.

  • Adam Czajczyk

    Hello Tony,

    I hope you're well today and thank you for your post!

    We were experiencing some issues with internal search and while we are conducting some general "under the hood" improvements, that's also "on the table". I admit that I'm not quite sure how to answer your questions at this very moment - due to aforementioned fact - but I can promise you that I'll forward all your suggestions directly to the people involved in our site development.

    It's a valuable insight and very valid questions/points so I'm sure they'll take that into account.

    Thank you for your feedback!

    Best regards,

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