Advanced Search with OSF Widgets

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Advanced search applies to a few different OSF widgets, especially WebMap and OSF Ontology. The example herein uses WebMap, but the same principles apply to any of its deployments.


Advanced Search is obtained via a standard search on WebMap or via the Advanced Search link below the search box on other applications.

The general presentation of Advanced Search presents the structural data definitions of the results set in the right-hand panel, with a listing of individual results (and a pagination feature) in the left-hand panel:

Advanced search main.png

Individual Results Panel

The individual results panel presents all candidate results in this left-hand panel. If the results number exceeds the standard display limit (generally 10 or 20), then a pagination option is also presented at the bottom.

Advanced search results.png

For the WebMap application, a number of other options are presented on this results panel:

  1. The icon for the object type is also shown on the results, and linked to the map display
  2. Mouseovers or clicks cause the highlights to be syncronized between the results panel and the map display
  3. There may optionally be structured data records presented below each result
  4. Multiple results can be selected via checkbox for map display
  5. Selected results are moved to the top of the results listing, highlighted differently, and kept at the top of the listing so long as the checkbox is kept on.

Structural Data Panel

The structural data panel shows the sources (datasets), types (classes) and attributes (properties) for the results set that was produced from the starting search. Counts for each of these items are also provided, as well as checkboxes or icons for selecting them in subsequent filtering steps:

Advanced search structure.png

Filtering Results

Filtering by source or kind is done by checking one or more of their associated checkboxes (not shown). Selections by default are treated as combined (that is, in a Boolean sense the AND operator is applied).

Filtering by attributes is done via actual attribute values. When an attribute is selected, a Filter box appears. The actual filter value can be entered directly. OR, by clicking on the filter box, a listing of existing values appears as an auto-complete dropdown below the box, from which one can be selected:

Advanced search filter 1.png

By selecting the Add button, that attribute filter is now applied, and it is also possible to select another attribute to add to the filtering list:

Advanced search filter 2.png

Multiple attribute filters are combined via the Boolean AND operator, meaning that results get smaller and smaller with the addition of more filter conditions.

As attributes are inspected, their icon status changes. In order below, these icons represent: no action taken; filter condition applied; and filter evaluation in-progress:

Advanced search filter icons.png

As any of these filter conditions are applied, the applicable results list in the left-hand panel is altered to reflect the current filtering conditions:

Advanced search filter results.png

Lastly, for the WebMap application, changing the coverage of the map viewfinder may also cause some of the available results to be removed as the map is scrolled away from thumbtack(s) (not shown).