How to turn off Outlook’s horrible Top Results ‘feature’

Ever since email was invented, relevant temporal results have been the goal of its search. If you want to know about a meeting you were invited to, you’d search for the the company, and the last email would bubble up to the top.

With Microsoft Outlook, though, it doesn’t work like that. Search for a critical email and Outlook will bubble up prehistoric emails dug up from the fossil record and pin them to the top as “Top Result.� Decades of email use have taught us the date matters the most during searches. Your eyes track to the top results and you think it’s the most recent message, but with Top Result, it’s not. Not at all.

We have no idea what AI machine learning algorithms Outlook uses to determine what to show you, but we’ve had so many blown meetings and missed emails due to Outlook’s Top Result breaking the fundamental temporal rule of email that we’re ready to tie two cinder blocks around its neck and hurl it into the Hudson River. 

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