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Searching corporate wiki is pretty difficult, because contrary to something like Google, you can't use context of a search query to recommend content.

* First you have a few occurrence of the same search query in your search history (because only a few people searched similar words in the past)

* You can't either use synonyms of remove stop words to recommend better content (IT, can means "information technology, or the pronoun. THE can be an acronym, ...).

So basically the only thing you can do is search words. Confluence is worse than that because it tries to remove stop words and do things that break exact match search. But this is a difficult job. Ways to improve search: allow multi titles, index with tags, attributes, only do exact words match, allow users to suggest content for a specific search query, search autocompletion, searching in live during typing ... (many things that Confluence doesn't care about). You also have to respect rights when returning documents, each documents, can have rights from folder or document itself, inherited from team access or user access, so this is really computation intensive too, or pre-compute rights

(Working on a competitor [0] of Confluence and I have put plenty of hours of work on that specific issue, and I can tell you this is really hard)

[0] https://dokkument.com

It seems like there ought to be some recognition that these are business tools, and ought to be designed with power users in mind. Instead, "search" in B2B products is built with the same uber-minimalist UX as B2C search.

Even early Google had more power user features than a typical B2B product search bar.

Boolean expressions (NOT, OR, AND), exact match strings, links-to, linked-from, in-folder/category, etc. should be mandatory for these workflows. Better if you can include search queries as live page content, as in Notion & Height.

Knowledge management is still a neglected area in most of companies. No money => a few players. Confluence has been there for years with almost no competition. Notion has emerged recently but is not really a good fit for medium to large companies. As a result Confluence is not worried and doesn't have to improve its product.

Power users are a small share of users of knowledge management software, so it is difficult to build a system only for them. Most people just type a few words and give up if they don't find the result in the 5 first results.

> Power users are a small share of users of knowledge management software, so it is difficult to build a system only for them

In practice, knowledge management at companies is a specialization. There are <5% of employees that go around and document/organize things for everyone else. Most employees are passively consuming information and information hierarchies built by someone else.

If you're not building tools for those power users, you're not building for creating and organizing content in your system at all.

As an example of how nuts this is, managers at my company regularly try out various search terms, create index documents, and do "internal SEO" to optimize how other employees will discover documents. This isn't a byzantine environment like public web search is, why do I have to hack around the wiki's default notion of page relevance?

Well it depends of what you are talking about. Usually people who produce contents are power users. But people who search content as you said are the 95% of others users, these are the ones who also needs a search relevant to them.

My belief is that knowledge management can't exist without power users, which we call "admins", these are the ones responsible to make sure content is well organized for others and create content if necessary. Those people need specific tools to do their job well, which to me is more something that you can have in an admin interface while all the users use the basic interface.

Those tools have two sets of users, admins (curators, creators, organizers) and regular users. We need a different interface for both. And that's exactly what we are working on.

> This isn't a byzantine environment like public web search is, why do I have to hack around the wiki's default notion of page relevance?

That's exactly why I suggested to have multi titles, when you get that and you facilitate the suggestion of new titles for a document, anyone when finding a document can suggest the query terms he used, and that can benefit others users

We're also trying to build something in the space with www.archbee.io, a YC company.

Confluence does search while typing, it's just so abysmally slow that you typically won't get a result until you've stopped typing.

Confluence/Jira is abysmally slow with everything it does, anyone know how/why that is?

Have a look at how many http queries it is sending. It's like they are sending a unique query for every word used in each page. This is horrendous.

FYI, the "blog" page on your website returns an error. Plus it appears to be a django setup in debug mode, and is serving full error messages w/ settings to the web.

Do you really think you will be able to get close to Google results?

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