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I know that you can limit searches to just your own posts by typing:

user:usernumber

in the Search box, e,g, "user:1322 fpga" (since I am usernumber 1322) to search all my own posts (questions and answers) that include fpga in them.

But what's with this usernumber business? Why can't I just type in a username like this?

user:tcrosley

Doesn't seem to be much of a stretch to convert the latter into the former.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Curious why the downvote, seems like a reasonable question to me. \$\endgroup\$ – tcrosley Jun 10 '15 at 12:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ This might be a better question for the main Meta Stack Exchange because it's consistent across the network. \$\endgroup\$ – Greg d'Eon Jun 12 '15 at 0:42
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Gregd'Eon thanks, looks like I've gotten my answer -- no can do. But at least I found out about a useful shortcut. \$\endgroup\$ – tcrosley Jun 12 '15 at 0:46
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You can't enter your user name there because the software wasn't written to accept it, obviously. Apparently it was written to accept only user numbers. Why exactly isn't very relevant, but I can guess it may have to do with the wide format of user names and the complexity of parsing them from other parts of the search string. Or, maybe whoever wrote it called the most immediately available existing routine to get done with the task quickly and get onto something more important. Again, asking "why" is rather pointless.

By the way, you can always include "user:me" to search only your own posts.

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    \$\begingroup\$ I realize the software wasn't written to accept it, that's why I tagged it as a "feature-request". You make a good point about the different formats of user names, obviously to search for your posts one would have to write something like user:"Olin Lathrop" because of the space. Thanks for letting me know about user:me, I wasn't aware of that. \$\endgroup\$ – tcrosley Jun 10 '15 at 12:54
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    \$\begingroup\$ User name is not a unique identifier, user number is. That,along with allowing just about any character in the user name, including spaces, are probably the technical reasons. \$\endgroup\$ – W5VO Jun 10 '15 at 20:06
  • \$\begingroup\$ @W5VO Curious, if display name isn't a unique identifier, and I type @ W5VO, how does the system know whom to notify if there is more than one W5VO? \$\endgroup\$ – tcrosley Jun 11 '15 at 14:37
  • \$\begingroup\$ @tcrosley It only searches the comment thread you're commenting in (and chat has a different system), so that greatly reduces the potential for namespace collision. No idea what happens if two usernames that are exact matches are involved in a conversation. \$\endgroup\$ – W5VO Jun 11 '15 at 18:26
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For your own posts, you can use:

user:me

This doesn't work for display names, and won't ever work, because names are not unique.

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