What determines the order of results in a search?

Topic started by Oglaphone on April 28, 2010. Last post by Bellum 4 years, 7 months ago.
Post by Oglaphone (67 posts) See mini bio Level 11
Sorry if this is excessively trivial, but please, indulge my curiosity here.
When you start to type a word or a name, the site's auto complete(or whatever the term for it would be) tries to help by coming up with a list of suggestions. What I want to know is, what determines the order that equally relevant results are listed?
 
Like if I enter "Akira" the first result is the franchise Akira, which is pretty understandable as that's just the word itself, but following that we get the person, "Akira Toriyama", then the character "Akira Kaburagi" then another character "Akira Takano" etcetera etcetera. The order isn't random, and while there might seem to be priority according to category(first franchises, then creators, then characters) I can't work out what determines the order than the characters are listed. It's not alphabetical, I can tell that. Factors that I could guess at would be the age of the page(though I doubt it), the amount of content on a page or its popularity. 
Anyone got any ideas?
Post by John_Martone (2,992 posts) See mini bio Level 10
You know, I honestly don't have an answer, I know its supposed to be some degree of importance. I dunno what decides it, presumably some combination of number of edits and number of user clicks. Hence the reason Akira (franchise) is at the top, while Akira Toriyama presumably gets more traffic clicks than the character "akira"
 
I'll ask one of the programmers next chance I get.
Post by Kelleth (7,798 posts) See mini bio Level 20
Moderator
Its programmed to show the exact opposite of what you are searching
Post by Bellum (127 posts) See mini bio Level 8
If it's anything like GiantBomb, I suspect it has something about the position of the heavens.
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