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RE: "Canned" search instructions?

From: David VanHook <dvanhook(at)>
Date: Mon Oct 28 2002 - 14:45:20 GMT

Thanks very much -- I ended up doing a Google search for SWISH and
instructions, and managed to find a couple of other sites similar to yours
which had some pre-written SWISH instructions.  In the end, I ended up doing
exactly as you suggest: start with the others, then customize it to match
some of the tweaks I've made to SWISH myself.  I just didn't want to have to
completely re-invent the wheel if it wasn't necessary!

Thanks again --

Dave V.

-----Original Message-----
From: Lauren Landsburg []
Sent: Saturday, October 26, 2002 9:09 AM
Cc: Multiple recipients of list
Subject: Re: [SWISH-E] "Canned" search instructions?

Hi, David.

> I'm about to go live with SWISH-E (again, fantastic software), and I'm in
> the process of writing the "search instructions" page....
> Does anybody out there have a nice little search instructions page for
> SWISH-E which I could "borrow" for my site?

Unless I misunderstand your question, you probably have to write this
yourself for your users.  I assume you are looking for a user-friendly
version of

How do your users access swish-e?

If they do it through a web page with a form you designed, you probably let
them select among several options.  But then you need instructions to match.
Swish-e's "fantastic software" (I quite agree!) makes it so that the set of
options from which
users can select is highly customizable, with a little post-processing
magic.  The cost is that you then do have to explain what you did or no one
can use it!  :)

If you used an HTML form someone else provided, that person also probably
has an instructions-page to match.  So: Start there.  That's how I got
started: I knew Perl, so I picked off a Perl-based user-interface and set of
instructions.  I then
customized it for my various sites' purposes.

You are welcome to cop from one of the Instructions pages I've written, but
be aware: this page as written is highly dependent on customizations I've
written in Perl to post-process the basic index provided by Swish-e.  Also,
the page is written with
an eye toward that website's readership, which consist of fairly-well
educated graduate students and faculty in economics: they may have little
knowledge of computers, but they are very logical in reasoning ability.
Consequently, neither the
language, style, or options may cover what you want for _your_ users!  But
maybe it can give you some ideas about what users are looking for in
general.  We get pretty good reviews about our Help pages.  So:

Received on Mon Oct 28 14:49:34 2002