Survey: What filters would you like for 🔍 search?

This was something that was really hard for me to get my head around for the entire time I’ve been volunteering on the search project.

The languages interface on the search page:

Is where you decide which documents it’s going to search in. Not the root language of the texts. The current wording is really confusing to me because it says right there root languages. What I’m proposing it say is Manuscripts.

So if you have Pali and English ticked and you search for cat, it’s going to search in all documents in both Pali and English that have that term. That means:

  1. It will return results from English translations of Pali, Classic Chinese, Sanskrit, etc. texts if they have the word cat
  2. If you have partial match turned on, it is going to return a bunch of Pali documents (i.e. the Pali manuscripts themselves) that have the characters cat in them. Lots of them

Does that make sense?

So except for searching for the articles written by Bhante Sujato, there are no in:english texts. in: is exclusively for ancient collections and also groups of ancient collections in the form of shortcuts, like in:ebt

Does that make sense?

So, as odd as it sounds, in:pali is not asking for Pali texts. Its asking for all the collections that are written originally in Pali. I know, it hurts my head thinking about it. If you have Pali ticked on the search settings then including it will be redundant if your search term is Pali.

So once we actually have a working in:pali filter, and once we can use operators with the same filter keyword, you could search for in:vinaya AND in:pali to get all of the Pali/Theravada texts. That would be equivalent to in:pli-tv-vi (which is ugly and doesn’t work at the moment.) All of that is why I’m proposing in:pvt for Pali Vinaya Texts.

And you are correct that there is some inherent redundancy in the whole system because if you search for feeling in all the texts on SC (so imagine every box ticked on the settings area) then I’m fairly sure it will only be returning English results.

However, if you try the same thing with cat you are going to get an avalanche of Vietnamese translations because (with diacritics, which are ignored) cat as a very common Vietnamese word. Or if you search vedana you are going to get Sanskrit manuscripts as well as Pali.

We do need a tag for this. I’m proposing in:pst, In Pali Sutta Texts.

But… once we get involved with Vinaya and Abhidhamma, then there are many schools that use Sanskrit, so in:sat (In Sanskrit Abhidhamma Texts) is a thing, but is it only thing we need? And I just noticed that there is one school that has both Sanskrit and Classic Chinese root texts.

That’s kind of the reason I made the thread. :joy: