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You're not searching for questions tagged with javascript but the word itself. I don't know why it wasn't automatically converted to a tag search. I suspect it has something to do with this being a common word. – ChrisF Jan 10 '12 at 15:06
"this" is a stop word in the search engine, we'll take a look at this coming up, but that's not an easy fix (it worsens many other scenarios). – Nick Craver Jan 10 '12 at 15:06
@NickCraver: OK. Understandably a tricky one. – Lightness Races in Orbit Jan 10 '12 at 15:07
I think I need a lesson 1 on stop words. Shouldn't this just be eliminated from the search resulting in a search for javascript (with thousands of results)? – Dennis Jan 10 '12 at 15:12
@TomalakGeret'kal : Stack Overflow's search converts popular tag names to tag searches. So it's probably literally the same search with or without the tag explicitly marked in the query. – Craig Stuntz Jan 10 '12 at 15:54
@NickCraver : Shouldn't be that hard for the results page to mention that it removed the stop word from the query, no? Then, at least, the user would understand why the search failed. I understand the fix itself can be tricky. Having said that, I'm not sure that this should be a stop word at all on a programming site. – Craig Stuntz Jan 10 '12 at 15:57
@Craig - The engine isn't only running for SO :) Also, no, it's non-trivial to show the word was removed, but we'll be taking a look either way. – Nick Craver Jan 10 '12 at 17:06
@NickCraver You don't need to know that the word was removed from the query. You just need the intersection of the query words and the list of all stop words (which I'm presuming, perhaps incorrectly, that you know). – Craig Stuntz Jan 10 '12 at 19:21

Your exact case isn't solved, because this is still a stop word. You'll need to quote it to ensure it doesn't get removed, like this:

 javascript "this"

You can test it out here

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