Would it be possible for the auto-generated
possible duplicate of Blah blah blah
comment to add text like the following when the selected duplicate is in the sidebar?
possible duplicate of Blah blah blah, found in the Related sidebar
I've found a number of questions this weekend that have had duplicates ready and waiting for me to find in the Related sidebar. I've taken to adding "from the Related sidebar" to the "possible duplicates" comment, to try to point out the fact that the list of questions that drops down when a question title is typed in isn't just cosmetic.
It's easy to ignore features of a UI that you're not familiar with already, especially when you're frustrated with a problem and just want to find out the answer. Doing research seems like it will take more time than just throwing a question out there and hoping somebody drops some code in your lap.
The link to the potential duplicate in the auto-comment and in the "Possible Duplicate" box are, I believe, intended to allow the questioner to get the desired information while still enforcing the standards of the site. I'm just proposing an extension of that idea -- indicate to questioners that the site is trying to help find the answer by performing a search on their behalf when they type in a question, so that they learn and can take advantage of that help next time they ask.
Oh, and how about an uppercase initial letter, while we're at it? :p