GitHub previews enhanced code search

GitHub has unveiled a technology preview of improved code searching capabilities on its popular code-sharing site, along with “precise” code navigation for Python.

Among the enhancements is a new code search engine built in Rust, oriented toward searching code and speed. In the technology preview, the search index covers more than five million of the most popular public repositories. Searches also can be made on private repositories if a user has access.

Features of the technology preview include:

  • “Smart” rankings and an index optimized for code.
  • Search for an exact string, with support for substring matches and special characters.
  • Scope searches with org:code or repo:code qualifiers, with auto-completion suggestions in the search box.
  • Refining of results using filters such as language:code and path:code.
  • Get bearings quickly with additional features, like a directory tree.

Search syntax can be found on GitHub.

Developers interested can sign up for the waitlist and provide feedback. Once the technology preview is enabled, developers can try it out on GitHub. At the outset, a separate interface will be provided for the new search as it is built out. Once GitHub is satisfied with the feedback and the technology is ready for wider adoption, GitHub will integrate it into the main experience.

Precise code navigation for Python is powered by a new stack graphs framework. Stack graphs enable encoding of detailed information about Python name binding rules. This enables determinations about which specific definition each reference refers to, with no additional configuration required for repos.

Copyright © 2021 IDG Communications, Inc.

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