What is wpSearch?
In short, wpSearch is a search plugin for WordPress. It is based on the open source search engine ‘Lucene’ which means it’s fast, and relevant. It allows a WordPress user to create a Google-like search on their blog — complete with boolean logic, wildcards, and incredible relevancy. This plugin allows a user to search their blog and view results with a power unrivaled in the WordPress world. Here is a more in-depth (and long-winded!) discussion on why it could be the best search for your blog.
The basics of wpSearch are simple (this is covered in more detail in the installation document):
- Step 1: Install wpSearch in your plugins directory and activate it through the WordPress administration page.
- Step 2: Go to the wpSearch Settings page and build your blog’s ‘search index’ (the search engine’s database) in one click
- Step 3: Check out your new blog search — maybe even blog about it!
Why was wpSearch created?
There are quite a few ways to search a blog. The way most users implement a search on their WordPress blog is by simply using the default search functionality of WordPress. The default search WordPress provides is flawed in two ways: The search is build from dynamically generated database commands; The actual search quality is fairly poor, not to mention slow.
Overcoming the issue of search quality has been attempted by many dedicated WordPress users. Some user-developers have implemented their own WordPress search algorithm, trying define what they think is relevant in a search. These methods have one thing in common: They use the SQL fulltext search. These searches may bring back a set of matching results, but you certainly can’t expect them to be in order of true relevancy. Databases just weren’t made to do that.
Another method of blog search has come about. This method uses a real internet search engine, such as Google. These search plugins simply query a real web search engine (such as google) and output the results to the blog. This method usually solves the relevancy issue and also helps improve the speed issue. But there is one thing wrong with this approach: Google can take up to two weeks to update its index, meaning a WordPress post might not be searchable until well after it is relevant. This method is not for time-sensitive material.
wpSearch is a WordPress plugin. This means that everything needed to implement wpSearch on your blog can simply be ‘plugged’ in to your existing WordPress installation.
The wpSearch tries to be as easy to use for the average blogger as possible. Once it is plugged-in, all searches automatically take place through wpSearch, bypassing WordPress’ slow keyword search.
Right now, wpSearch has been released under version 1.5. This latest version is extremely fast and lightweight. Check out the screen shots and play with the plug-in if you would like to check it out. It is an open source plugin, and anyone willing to contribute to this project is welcome.
The major features of wpSearch are:
- Unmatched and customizable search relevancy (that’s the power of Lucene working)
- Very fast search speed
- Wildcard and Boolean operator support
- Easy installation
- Instantly updated searching after a post has been written
- Searching of Posts and Pages
Features for advanced users:
- Access to the internal search service for extendability