Often I notice that the search function seems a bit off.
Don't get me wrong, I've found lots of great questions and answers. It just appears, to me, that it heavily leans towards getting questions answered at the cost of leaning somewhat away from finding answers to questions. Which makes complete sense.
Possibly the greatest thing about SO is the great wealth of information left behind, but it can be rather difficult to find some of that information. This is especially noticeable to me when duplicates arise yet the keywords in the title and question don't yield relevant results. IMHO, this is because people are trying to find their answers but don't.
I don't know what formulates the results, the only solutions I've personally thought of were a very clunky second search box or some sort of advanced search with a different style of search possible for finding archived results.
Seriously feel that there needs to be some work done there to make good answers more accessible.
The only time this has happened to me I feel is only a mediocre example. I have a question "Hard Copy vs Soft Copy" over at programmers. I looked around for a while but didn't find the question later said mine was a duplicate of "Is it common to print out code on paper?" In this instance it was more my fault because even optimally, I wouldn't expect the search to find "Hard Copy" and "print" similar enough and also I should have more logically just searched for "print". I've seen much better examples but they come and go and I forget them. Apologies.
I feel strongly about this issue though because I am sure it is affecting many users, especially the newer ones. Is there a way to look at only closed questions? Some of the patterns are somewhat obvious in them.