As you know the default namespaces selected for the Special:Search page can be customized at your personal Preferences#Search tab and then manually changed via the Advanced search area once you are at any Special:Search page.
The drawback is that the manual changing this selection involves individually clicking potentially dozens of check boxes.
- At one wiki I see only 20 check boxes due to that wiki having the Blog feature disabled. (Main, User, Project, File, MediaWiki, Template, Help, Category, Forum, Video) I suspect this might be the fewest possible namespaces.
- Here at central.wikia.com I see 26 check boxes due to the custom namespace "Hub" and then "User blog" and "Blog".
- At a Semantic MediaWiki enabled community I see 36 check boxes - due to that wiki also having just one custom namespace plus the five SMW related namespaces (Property, Type, Form, Concept and Filter).
Up to 3 custom name spaces are possible. Therefore a wiki may have as many as 40 check boxes within this Advanced search array of namespace selectors.
I suggest that
- Preferences#Search have 3 columns of check boxes. Each column being for a preset selection of namespaces that the user might want.
- At Special:Search four buttons be added:
- Select all namespaces but not their companion talk namespaces (i.e Select all the evens but not the odds)
- Deselect all namespaces but not their companion talk namespaces (i.e Deselect all the evens but not the odds)
- Select all talk namespaces but not their companion namespaces (i.e Select all the odds but not the evens)
- Deselect all talk namespaces but not their companion namespaces (i.e Deselect all the odds but not the evens)
What do you think?