The text input control (top right) should retain its value when used. Thus making it much easier to modify the search.

Currently one has to completely re-enter (with all typo likelihood), or navigate back (thus losing the initial results as reference.

EDIT: JUst tried again on SF. Search for "[windows]" consistently left a blank search box... some other searches left it populated and some didn't. There seems to be a lack on consistency. (All in FF.)

EDIT #2: As noted in the answer below if the search consists of just tags, then it is treated as selecting those tags. This should still leave the search box populated to allow refinement of the search (i.e. keep the page content consistent with a search).

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Up vote meta.stackoverflow.com/questions/30371/… for this feature request –  Greg Bray May 14 '10 at 18:47
    
@Greg: Thanks for the pointer. –  Richard May 15 '10 at 8:44
    
This is completed, you can find details here: meta.stackoverflow.com/questions/30371/… –  Nick Craver Feb 15 '11 at 1:53
    
@NickCraver: Thanks. –  Richard Feb 15 '11 at 7:52
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2 Answers

The reason a search for [windows] will not keep the term in the search box is because that will actually take you to the tag page.

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This is what I (finally) realised. But I think this should not clear the search box as it makes refinement of the search harder. –  Richard Sep 21 '09 at 9:14
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Which browser are you using? I currently observe the behaviour that you request to be implemented.

I just searched with the keyword test, and on the page which shows the search results there is the text test in the search textfield.

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Aye, me too. I used a three part phrase and just built it out to test on Chrome Beta/Win7. Coincidentally, I discovered that the search for rock em sock em robots returns around 500 posts. See for yourself! stackoverflow.com/search?q=rock+em+sock+em+robots –  Eric Sep 20 '09 at 18:46
    
And now it seems to be working (FF and IE)... but I know it wasn't earlier (and the first try with IE didn't work either). –  Richard Sep 20 '09 at 18:48
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