Bug 102615 - UI: Have Find Bar (Ctrl+F) and Find & Replace (Ctrl+H) search Values by default
Summary: UI: Have Find Bar (Ctrl+F) and Find & Replace (Ctrl+H) search Values by default
Status: NEW
Alias: None
Product: LibreOffice
Classification: Unclassified
Component: Calc (show other bugs)
Version:
(earliest affected)
Inherited From OOo
Hardware: All All
: medium enhancement
Assignee: Not Assigned
URL:
Whiteboard:
Keywords:
Depends on:
Blocks: Find-Search
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Reported: 2016-09-27 01:51 UTC by brucehohl
Modified: 2019-03-10 21:13 UTC (History)
6 users (show)

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Description brucehohl 2016-09-27 01:51:35 UTC
This enhancement request is to change the default search behavior of the Find Bar (Ctrl+F) and Find & Replace (Ctrl+H) to Values instead of Formulas.

I make this request as nearly all my searches are performed to find calculated values (as opposed to characters or numbers within Formulas).  If fact, I typically only search Formulas when performing a Find & Replace to update formulas. I suspect this may be the case for most users.

Also, in LO 5.2.1.2 neither search feature includes a single click way to set a search for Values. Ctrl+F does not include a Values check box or Selection list [Formulas|Values|Notes|All].  For Ctrl+H the Values selection is placed under 'Other options' in a selection list which requires 3 more mouse clicks (and seems not possible to accomplish without the mouse).

If this request is not aligned with most use of the search features I suggest instead that the choice of searching for [Values|Formulas|Notes|All] in Ctrl+F and Ctrl+H should be 1 click away and retained for the session.
Comment 1 V Stuart Foote 2016-09-27 02:13:05 UTC
Any reason to not make this the default?

Presently in Calc a FindBar TextFind widget searches Formulas and cell content--and excludes calculated results.

Other than tweaking a long present default, would this change result in a negative UX?

@Heiko -- user survey worthy?
Comment 2 Heiko Tietze 2016-09-27 07:13:14 UTC
(In reply to V Stuart Foote from comment #1)
> @Heiko -- user survey worthy?

https://plus.google.com/u/0/107566594492891737454/posts/J1pEbNWxEhc

I added the option to not restrict the search to a particular type, meaning you find both a cell with =1+1 as well as =1.

This quick poll is not a fully qualified survey. We should treat the result as an atmospheric picture only.
Comment 3 brucehohl 2016-09-27 13:20:07 UTC
For comparison:

Google Sheets: Ctrl+F by default searches Values only (and appears to have no way to search Comments).

Excel 2013: Ctrl+F by default searches Formulas and Values but not Comments. This is the case even though Excel Ctrl+F > Options > Search in: = Formulas by default. Hence, the displayed interface settings != default behavior :(

Two observations:
(1) Both Sheets & Excel include Values by default in Ctrl+F.
(2) Excel has a UI deficiency which I hope not to see in LO.
Comment 4 Heiko Tietze 2016-09-29 10:34:11 UTC
(In reply to Heiko Tietze from comment #2)
> https://plus.google.com/u/0/107566594492891737454/posts/J1pEbNWxEhc

The majority searches for values followed by ~25% who want to find everything. At third position with 18% users want to find formulas first of all.

My take on this is simplicity: The quick search should be clean without controls to steer the workflow. Finding everything makes sense here. And in the full dialog an option to restrict the results to values or formulas etc. makes sense, at best better exposed as Bruce said in comment 0.
Comment 5 Cor Nouws 2016-09-29 15:43:48 UTC
(In reply to Heiko Tietze from comment #4)
> My take on this is simplicity: The quick search should be clean without
> controls to steer the workflow. Finding everything makes sense here. And in
> the full dialog an option to restrict the results to values or formulas etc.
> makes sense, at best better exposed as Bruce said in comment 0.

Looks good - thanks!
Comment 6 brucehohl 2016-09-30 01:05:59 UTC
More comments (as I do searches very often):

(1) Although my original enhancement request was for Ctrl+F and Ctrl+H to find Values by default and the informal survey supports that approach, I equally agree with the logic of having a default search for all (Values, Formulas and Comments).  As stated that would simply cover all search cases.

(2) Keeping the default search type the same for Ctrl+F and Ctrl+H provides consistency.

(3) For Ctrl+H changing the default search choices would be easier if: (a) Other Options were always displayed. The Find Bar already provides slim search tool. (b) Instead of a selection list, check boxes where used for Values, Formulas, Comments. This is more flexible as the user could select more than one choice. Reconsidered layout of Find & Replace might be in order as well.

(4) For Find Bar (Ctrl+F) the I suggest the English label "Formatted Display" should be changed to "As Formatted".  (I had to check the release notes to determine the purpose of that check box.)

(5) I like the idea of user control over the persistence of the Ctrl+H choices. This could be accomplished by (a) saving ALL choices to the user profile or (b) the suggestion stated elsewhere of an Expert Config option to change the default search type (and perhaps other search settings such as Columns instead of Rows).
Comment 7 brucehohl 2016-10-01 13:29:24 UTC
Amendment to comment 6:

(3)(a) I suggested that Other Options always be displayed but instead perhaps the user choice of display or not could be remembered in the user profile or for the session. The thought is that it is more efficient if search parameter settings can be easily seen (if desired) and can be changed with the fewest clicks/KB presses.

(These thoughts also applies to the Standard Filter Options button. This is not specific to this bug report but is made as UI concept suggestion for consistent handling of Options buttons.)

(4) Ctrl+H also includes the English label "Formatted Display" for which I suggest the term "As Formatted" may be more clear to users.
Comment 8 Speranskiy 2017-01-30 08:01:07 UTC
Any updates regarding this guys? It's very annoying to go to the CTRL+H dialog to find a value!
Comment 9 Heiko Tietze 2017-01-30 09:05:28 UTC Comment hidden (no-value)
Comment 10 Cor Nouws 2017-02-07 16:54:41 UTC
(In reply to Speranskiy from comment #8)
> Any updates regarding this guys? It's very annoying to go to the CTRL+H
> dialog to find a value!

Updates are posted in this issue.
For the rest: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Development ;)
Comment 11 Greg Nowak 2018-02-08 07:41:33 UTC
Thumbs up for making ctrl+f search for values by default the same with ctrl+h.

Thank you.
Comment 12 Mike Kaganski 2018-02-08 07:47:44 UTC
I don't think it is productive to decide on defaults, unless the user's choice is saved for re-use in profile.
Comment 13 juho.lehtonen 2019-03-10 21:13:50 UTC
I also support making ctrl+f search for values by default the same with ctrl+h. Or at least have option for that straight in the search bar.

Thanks.