I’ve toyed a lot with how to do search. I originally put it in the menubar, but then removed it (along with some buttons), since you can’t put buttons or a search box in a menubar on some platforms (Ubuntu Unity, Mac OS X). Aside from searching the document, this box would also search the menu structure and help — kind of an omnibox, really, although the two use-cases are quite different: one is for navigating the document, one is for finding commands. I also snuck in a search feature into my simplified navigator proposal, but it wasn’t very prominent or well thought-out.

I then silently removed the search box, hoping that I’d later find a better place for it, one that works with all platforms. At one point, I was actually thinking that “Find” doesn’t need more prominence. After all, it’s the first item in the “View” menu in Citrus, so it’s easy to find and hit (and Chrome users get by fine having it only in the menu).

At the end of the day, though, I still missed not having it up-front. And so I put it in the static toolbar, far to the right. And I rethought it completely, so that it could serve as a sort of center for getting around the document: I combined search and Navigator, and got rid of the floating windows and dialogs. Tada:

It doesn’t seem like much, I know, but it puts a lot of things up front into one interface.

It serves instead of the “Find and Replace” dialog (and is much more powerful than the current “Find” toolbar): the “A->B” button shows a textbox under the searchbox for replacing text; the “All” button (represented by a circle) selects all the results. (To replace all, you select all, then hit replace.) Advanced search options (just like those from the dialog) are available under the “Options” button (the one with the gear).

It also serves as the Navigator — just click the compass button. It’s the revamped Navigator, of course — read more about it here.

And as it’s the revamped Navigator, it also works as a page/slide pane.

Lastly, it’s also the place to go for selecting specific stuff. If you want to select all tables, for example, choose “Tables” from the category picker and push “Select all” (again, the circle icon). To select everything in the document, the classic “Select all” functionality, choose “All contents” (that’s the default, by the way) and push “Select all”.

2 thoughts on “Navigation

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