[Python-ideas] New Project to Capture summaries from this

Steven D'Aprano steve at pearwood.info
Fri Mar 29 02:04:24 EDT 2019

On Thu, Mar 28, 2019 at 06:43:39PM -0700, Nathaniel Smith wrote:

> For example, here's a post of yours from a few weeks ago:
> https://mail.python.org/pipermail/python-ideas/2019-March/055911.html
> AFAICT, it is not possible to find that post with Google.
> For example,
> doing a site-restricted search with an exact quote from your email
> says that there are no pages that match:
> https://www.google.com/search?q="Is+that+common+enough+that+it+needs+to+be+built-in+to+dict+itself%3F"+site%3Amail.python.org


Maybe Google hasn't crawled Python-Ideas for March yet.

Or maybe they are continuing their ambition to dumb everything down to the lowest 
common denominator by applying it to search now too.

For many years now I've been disappointed at Google search's lack of 
*precision*: it is really good at finding the same super-popular pages, 
but not so good at finding *specific* pages even when given exact 
substrings from that page.

Nevertheless, Google is not the only search engine in town. This was the 
first search I tried:


(second link is the desired page).

Here's a second set of search terms which leads to the right page, 
without even using a site-specific search:


(sixth link)

Google does seem worse at this though.

Nevertheless, I take your point: the ability of search engines to hit a 
*specific* page containing an exact phrase seems pretty poor. (As 
opposed to finding a *popular* page related to the phrase.)

But in context, we're not asking people to find a specific page, so this 
test is totally irrelevant. What we want people to do is find previous 
discussions. A link to any part of the thread would be sufficient.


links to at least three relevant discussions on the first page.


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