I'm currently working on an app that does search in a limited domain (travel). The current interface is via a dialog textbox, where the user enters sentences or phrases as queries. While natural language offers lots of flexibility I'm realizing this kind of interface is inherently problematic. First, parsing the natural language can be tricky as there are many possibilities. Second, and probably more important, it's a blind interface. We have various types of data and functionality on how to search and present it. It becomes a kind of guessing game whether the user can form a search query that will hit our data and search capabilities. Unless they happen to hit pay dirt it becomes frustrating for the user. At the same time it feels like the user isn't seeing the best of what we can do for them.
I'm sure I'm not the first to run into this. Do you have experience/ideas/research on how to improve/replace such an interface?
posted by blueyellow
on Nov 17, 2012 -
I just gave up on two pages in quick succession; the first hung while it waited and waited on something from akamai, which was apparently taking a nap just then, and the second while it waited and waited on something from doubleclick, equally asleep. Like I care whether a page manages to do its dirty background business with doubleclick. Is there any browser that has a [SKIP IT] button you can click that means "give up on what you're trying to get right now, skip over it, go on and load the rest of the page"? Would such a button be feasable?Or have I been missing something that's been in front of me all the time?
posted by jfuller
on Jul 28, 2004 -