Meta Stack Exchange is where users like you discuss bugs, features, and support issues that affect the software powering all 158 Stack Exchange communities.

What is meta?
Here's how it works:
  1. Any Stack Exchange user can ask a question
  2. The community provides support, votes on ideas, and reports bugs
  3. Your voice helps shape the way Stack Exchange operates

Stack Exchange's built-in search returns results really really quickly. Are the pages spidered and indexed? Is there some schema optimization in use? I'm just curious.

share|improve this question
up vote 5 down vote accepted

They're using the new mind-reading features in .NET 4.0, so the server already knows what you're going to search for (and starts looking) before you even hit the submit button.

But seriously. :)

I believe they're using SQL Server full-text search (is this covered in one of the FAQs?) so yes, everything is "spidered and indexed"...

edit here's a blog post that mentions them in the same sentence... :)

share|improve this answer

An enslaved army of highly trained monkeys.

share|improve this answer
Don't forget the typewriters – Joe Schmoe Jul 9 '09 at 18:43
As opposed to Google which, as everyone knows, uses pigeons, as in the famous Google PigeonRank (TM) system. – Tom Harris Dec 1 '09 at 3:05

Keep in mind that SO doesn't have to search eleventy-billion or so web pages like Google does. It's more like 350,000 questions. Many databases are much larger than that.

share|improve this answer

Mainly because it's not a very good search. It is easy to return bad search results fast.

share|improve this answer
Is this "hide behind wiki friday" or "im going to make a comment an answer wednesday"? – Troggy Oct 23 '09 at 20:40
"It is easy to return bad search results fast." :) Funny but not true. – çağdaş Oct 23 '09 at 20:51
hey it's a running gag that SO site search sucks. i'm not the first to point it out. – Kip Oct 23 '09 at 21:16
used to be true, but not any more (see recent changes We just hadn't had time to work on it much, and it was low-pri since Google works so well. – Jeff Atwood Oct 24 '09 at 0:06

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .