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I'd like to see a few changes to the search script to ease searching of meta data. Reasons:
  • Regexp syntax is a bit complex to enter a lot
  • Some of the characters required in matching don't work easily (if at all) in URLs
  • ; for and does work in URLs - and is very useful for meta searches for forms
  • need compatibility code for those sites with a mixture of form and category topics (note: can upgrade using tools/upgradeformat), or could just weaken the current syntax that tends to know details are in cells (^lt;to> etc).

Am I missing something here?, I can't find the tools/upgradeformat function in any of the TWiki directories or topics [ EdgarBrown - 10 Oct 2002 ]

Aaaargggg.... it broke all the existing (pre-metadata) forms, at least they still display correctly [ EdgarBrown - 13 Oct 2002 ]


  • Have a new field for meta search terms
  • This is then turned into appropriate search string
  • Go for a simple format: meta-type,[key],fieldname,fieldvalue[,...] - in sets of 4, sets anded together

For example, to search for all TopicCategory fields for BugClassifications it would be:

  • meta="FIELD,TopicCateogry,value,BugClassifications"

all high priority open bugs:

  • meta="FIELD,BugType,value,open;FIELD,BugPriority,value,High";

for all .doc attachments it would be:

  • meta="FILEATTACHMENT,,name,\.doc";

Comparison operators could be added for the last item e.g. for all big attachments:

  • meta="FILEATTACHMENT,,size,>1000000";

-- JohnTalintyre - 18 Jul 2001

This looks very useful, since it lets you search forms (as in CategorySearchForm) using FormTemplateSystem (since this will be held as metadata - a bit confusing since to me the form data is just plain data, but not a big deal).

The syntax could be improved - how about the following, modelled on the registry and similar ways of modelling structured variable names (the FILEATTACHMENT is really just a structure that contains a few variables such as size and name):

  • meta="FIELD.TopicCategory.value:BugClassifications"

  • meta="FIELD.BugType.value:open;FIELD.BugPriority.value:High";

  • meta="FILEATTACHMENT..name:\.doc";

  • meta="FILEATTACHMENT..size:>1000000";

It would be nice to optimise away the '..' for FILEATTACHMENT etc if possible, but I think this scheme would be a bit easier to read.

-- RichardDonkin - 20 Jul 2001

Should I guess that a variant of this has been implemented in FormattedSearch?... Mmmm.... I don't seem to find a straight answer in any topic.

-- EdgarBrown - 10 Oct 2002

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Topic revision: r5 - 2002-10-13 - EdgarBrown
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