I think it would be useful to examine whether the present Search interface in the Home tab could be converted into a ribbon of its own. The tab of this ribbon would say "Search" and the tools within this ribbon would be "Favorites",
"Space", "Time", "Concepts", "Services",
The workflow would be:
(1) The User clicks on the "Search" tab and that pops up a panel that has a search summary on it, and has a "Run Search" button on it.
(2) If the user has stored the characteristics of a search previously, they are stored in "Favorites" and the user can click on the search that is needed, see the result show up in the search summary, and run the search.
(3) If the user wants to start a new search, they use "Space" to define the geographic region of the search domain, "Time" to define the required time horizon, "Concepts" to select the concepts to be searched, and "Services"
to select the services to be searched. Then they hit the Run Search button and the new information shows up as a "Search Results" in the legend.
(a) In the "Time" tab, the current application updates the end time to the current day, which is good. We should have a "Time back from present" option so that the user can pick the last 5 days, 3 months, 4 years, etc.
This would enable a "Favorites" search to enable somebody to get an update on the current situation in a hydrologic region of their interest.
(b) In the "Services" tab, we need a tree structure that is two-level by Organization and then by Service so that you have "USGS" as the organization and then NWIS Daily Values, Unit Values, etc, as the services published by that
organization. The current mass list of services makes your eyes glaze over. It would be good to have a hyperlink on each service entry that when you click on it takes you to a web site that explains what variables the service provides and
what is its spatial and temporal coverage.
(c) It is implicit in this workflow description that the results are contained in the "Search Results" table that appears in the map legend and accompanying map. We probably should store the result of each search as a persistant
data structure such as a shape file so that if the user hits "Save Project" the time series catalog that results from that search is permanently stored and can be retreived when the project is reopened later without running the search
again. Currently "Search Results" is lost when you close HydroDesktop because the information is not stored in a persistent data structure.