As part of the Bristol Civi Sprint a proposed new layout has been suggested for the existing Find and Merge Duplicates page. The page is used to add / edit Duplicate Matching Rules for the individual, organisation and household contact types. This wouldn't involve changes to the way the Merge Rules work but the changes will make the page easier to use and understand.
This would include changing the use of the confusing terms 'Strict' and 'Fuzzy' to 'Front End' and 'Back End' respectively. On-screen help text will explain what the terms mean and how to use the page features. The names of the Rules would also be altered so they reflect the fields used to identify a matching contact.
A mockup of the proposed changes can be found here;