In the past (before the latest search system changes), typing perl in the search field would redirect me to all of the questions with the tag. Great. Even more great: this is still working.

If I try to reach the C questions instead, well it never worked. However, searching for c] would work, and works.

Soon I realized it was related to the number of characters in a tag. And three characters used to work. But used to work. Not anymore.

Searching for vim won't go to its tag page. And the most impressive thing: searching for vim] won't work either.

So, what's up with the search system?

  • 3
    Actually, I like to be able to search for questions containing vim, independently if they are actually tagged vim. This works for some words which also are tag names (github, jsch), but not for others (git, java redirect to the tag if used as the sole search word) - I guess it depends on the popularity of the related tag or the word usage. – Paŭlo Ebermann Aug 20 '11 at 0:18

If you want to search any question containing "vim" you search for "vim"; if you want to look for any question tagged , you search for "[vim]."

Maybe the search code was more permissive before, and if you entered vim] understood that you meant to write [vim]. The syntax for searching questions tagged with a tag has always been the same, and it is well documented; with "well documented" I mean that the documentation reports to enclose the tag between [ and ] and not, for example, to use at least one of [ (at the beginning of the tag name) and ] (at the end of the tag name).

  • I was actually about to edit the question because I thought c] was a typo for [c]! – jscs Aug 19 '11 at 23:50
  • I know I'd have to search for [vim]. And I didn't had to type vim], only vim was enough. And yeah, I know it's well documented, but why removing such meaningful shortcut? I'd love to know what three-letter word was responsible for doing this, I doubt it's tag is not appropriate. – sidyll Aug 19 '11 at 23:50
  • @Josh, indeed helpful, eh? When you want to open the C questions page what do you do? Go over to the mouse, or hit <tab>c]<enter>? :-P – sidyll Aug 19 '11 at 23:53
  • 3
    If you use a non documented feature, the feature could not work anymore when they change code (it could be the "feature" was really a bug). Documented features should always work; if they don't work, or there is a bug, or the documentation was not exact. What I meant with well documented is that there isn't confusion about what the documentation suggests on how to search questions tagged with a tag. – kiamlaluno Aug 20 '11 at 0:16
  • I think this may be partly my fault [for asking about "[such]" things](meta.stackexchange.com/questions/103157/…). – M. Tibbits Aug 20 '11 at 1:04
  • We redirect for the top n tags on single search words. See the search help page. – Jeff Atwood Oct 8 '12 at 21:02

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