Historical Archive

A few weeks after releasing the product me and Sean have talked to several of our users over video calls. One of our goals was learning about frictions you might be experiencing and ways in which to mitigate them.

One complaint was that you’re not getting any results, or that you’re getting too many irrelevant results. We’ve addressed that with two guides. Admittedly though, the approaches outlined in them require that you wait a few days to test the effects. Can we do something to predict how good a filter will be immediately?

Well, not immediately

You might be wondering how come we’re the only ones out there with filters capable of e.g. matching a question mark in a post title. We achieved that by foregoing search engine functionality and only focusing on live content matching. This means we don’t need to store an index. And in fact can’t.

It’s extremely disk-consuming to create an index for something as seemingly simple as prefix matching, not to mention exact substring matching. We’re talking hundereds of times of more space of the original item. Quite unrealistic. And doing matching on an archive without an index is slow.

So we made email notifications

A slow archive is better than no archive. We’re storing a few weeks of historical content and when you enter a new filter we’ll match each and every item one by one. Just reading that much data from disk takes time! You can see the progress of our search in the Setup page at any time.

This process can take a little while. Worry not though, we will send you an email as soon as the search is complete.

Conclusion

We’re constantly improving our product, so don’t hesitate to tell us about your frictions.

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