Searching for artists, albums and songs is one of the core features of VocaDB, so it’s important that it’s efficient. I’m proud of VocaDB’s current search features – the search is pretty fast and offers plenty of filters for finding what you’re looking for. Despite of that, I’ve been thinking that it could be made even better, faster and easier. The next major change on VocaDB will be reworking the search pages, which will significantly affect the overall layout of the and how you navigate it. This will be called “Search 2.0” and you can preview it by trying the work in progress alpha version.
The first major change will be moving artist, album and song searches (possibly tag and user searches as well) all on the same page. There’s actually a “universal” search page already, but it’s very limited and you have to change pages to drill down with additional filters. With Search 2.0 you can switch between different aspects quickly. By default you’ll be searching for “anything”, meaning artists, albums and songs matching the query will be listed. If you know what you’re looking for you can change the search to focus on one of those entry types, which also gives you more search filters. The page updates automatically when you’re typing in letters, there’s no need to initiate the search by clicking a button. Paging is also faster because only new results will be loaded instead of the whole page.
When searches have been moved to the same page the left side menu will become even more useless than it is now. That’s why we’ll try to remove the menu completely, moving the remaining items elsewhere, such as the top of the page. This would free up lots of space for the main content.
The final cool thing about the new search is that it uses the public API, acting as a demonstration of what can be done with it. This could all be implemented on another site outside VocaDB, while still using VocaDB’s database.