[okfn-help] ckan FAQ.
nick at whiteink.com
Thu Dec 17 19:36:25 GMT 2009
Dear Jonathan, David, et al.
We're currently in the middle of a major overhaul of the CKAN UI. Notes from this process are available at:
And you can follow along with our changes in the repository at
I've appended a few comments to the below exchange:
On 17 Dec 2009, at 19:23, Jonathan Gray wrote:
> On Thu, Dec 10, 2009 at 8:22 PM, David Jones <drj at ravenbrook.com> wrote:
>> In the lists of packages (eg http://ckan.net/package/list but also search
>> results and stuff), there are two symbols displayed to the left of each
>> package. cross,cross / tick,cross / and so on. Their meaning does not
>> seem to be documented (and it's certainly not obvious enough for my simple
>> mind). Oh wait, I just found the hover over. Not accessible and still too
> Agree. We should have a key.
Indeed. This is in fact already addressed (as a first pass) in the mercurial repository, which I believe will shortly be deployed to test.ckan.net. There is certainly room for improvement (especially on the new "license openness" icon) but there is a key, and it should be a lot clearer than before.
>> One ought to be able to search for a package directly from this page:
>> instead of having to clicking on "search" to take you to a type-in box which
>> could easily fit on the "package" page.
> Again agree. Generally too many click throughs. Same applies to adding
> packages. Should be able to do all this from front page ideally.
> Website should better prioritise key pages.
This is another thing I've been attacking (across various views on CKAN, not just the packages index) over the past few days. Also now fixed in the repo (mostly).
>> Why does searching for "crutem" not find the package called "crutem3"?
> Yep also agree that this could be improved.
Have *also* discussed this with Rufus! It looks there's a good deal of consensus that this is an issue. We discussed that possibly the best way to deal with this is to:
a) Union the results of a full-text (stemmed) search with the results of a standard SQL substring search on the package shortname field, although it's not clear how we then decide on scoring/ordering. My feeling is that a substring match on a package shortname when the match is over (say) 50% of the length of the package name is a very high scoring characteristic and thus we should prioritise such results.
b) If the standard search throws up no results, fall through to a substring search on package name.
In addition, I plan to implement an autocompleter on the package search field whose results will be a substring search on package name and tag names, allowing you to jump directly to the appropriate tag/package listing directly from the search box.
>> What order are search results in? Example, searching for "temperature"
>> gives the package results in no particular order (that I can determine).
> I believe it is in order of when they were registered on CKAN. I think
> I also suggested a while back that we should have the option to list
> alphabetically, etc. Ultimately faceted browsing of tags would be
Using the tags as a filter on the search results is something I've discussed at the wiki (linked above). Not in the repo yet, but we're working on it.
>> I just added the "gistemp" package. The license is listed as
>> "Other::License Not Specified" because I couldn't find a definitive
>> statement. However, in the lists it appears as "This package is NOT openly
>> licensed" (once I discovered the hover over, see  above). But it
>> probably is. Might I suggest that "License Not Specified" merits a question
>> mark in that column?
> Again I agree. Someone else also raised this. I think I said perhaps
> there could be a question mark for 'not specified', rather than a
At the moment we don't have a separate icon for "license unknown" rather than "license not open" but I have (I think) improved the copy describing what the different icons mean. I may well add a question-mark icon later.
Hope the above comments are some cause for happiness!
P.S. Apologies to Jonathan for the reply-all failure!
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