In search of
February 25, 2013 9:02 AM   Subscribe

I have a GoogleBooks library with 2650 books in it. This is good. For several months now, I have been unable to perform full-text searches on it. This is not. I've ascertained from other users that this is not a system-wide problem, so the bug is somewhere in the library.

Full-text searches turn up, at most, 4-10 results, even though I know that my library should yield, say, over a hundred; moreover, the results tend to be random (e.g., missing books that have the keyword actually in the title). This happens across all browser platforms and on different computers. Using advanced search doesn't solve the problem, as that only pulls up results over all of GoogleBooks. There is no way to report this to Google using their form--it doesn't fall under their definition of "issues," I guess--and no way to contact them in any other fashion. (My previous technique for grabbing their attention--writing up the problem on my blog--hasn't worked this time, either.) Is there any way to fix this on my end (ha...), or is there some magic method of getting someone (anyone?) to look at what's going on?
posted by thomas j wise to Computers & Internet (2 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Your library is probably too large and the search times out. Are all your book paid? I would try deleting the free items if you can to reduce the size.
posted by wongcorgi at 9:42 AM on February 25, 2013

I sympathize with you, tjw: I have a GoogleBooks library with 599 books in Favorites. Running a search on My Library gives me exactly the result you describe: three or four hits, when there should be hundreds (and if I search my pet author's last name, I get 12 when it should literally appear in every book with preview or snippet view).

I've had increasing problems getting consistent results in Google Books searches for the last six months, and it's killing me because it's such a great service for research. But the lack of a way to provide feedback on anything but a legal issue is not making their product better.
posted by steef at 12:38 PM on February 25, 2013

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