Piloted search

Freeing users from bad search

Piloted Search quite simply is the ability for users to determine how to search. Many sites today have a few fields that allow users to use in a specific order for searching. Now user have the power to determine how they filter data. This is quite intuitive since all of our brains a little different. People prioritize information differently. Because of this some may people think to look down path A and not path B.

Celeriq addresses this issue by giving user filter options known as dimensions. These items are non-unique data like car make, model, or year. User filter on one of these items and the lists reconfigure themselves to remove all empty paths. Using look-ahead technology, Celeriq calculates empty paths and removes them from the results. As such the user will never get a set of results with zero items when using Piloted Search.

This last statement is actually quite important. Many application often have the "million or zero" problem. When users search they either get a million results (unusable) or zero results (looking like an error). The later problem is addressed by never allowing zero results to appear. Look-ahead ensures these search path are never offered to the user. The former problem is addressed by automatically paginating lists to provide the user with the illusion of simplicity.

Having all of these options displayed for user consumption also means he can filter up and down as often as he likes. This methodology allows users to feel free to use the site much more than they might have using existing search technologies. He will apply filters then remove them and apply others, building all sorts of customized groupings with one-click ease.

Ordinary people

Build web sites and information retrieval systems that allow non-technical people to find what they want easily. Many times there is no need to have a free-form text search when information can be grouped in sets like states, types, cities, mileage ranges, age ranges, etc. Users can choose from a list of items instead of typing what they want and finding nothing because of their search criteria.

Last edited May 4, 2013 at 3:02 PM by codetools, version 3


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