Search Help

Query Language

The text search engine allows queries to be formed from arbitrary Boolean expressions containing the keywords AND, OR, and NOT, and grouped with parentheses. For example:

information retrieval
finds documents containing 'information' or 'retrieval'

information or retrieval
same as above

information and retrieval
finds documents containing both 'information' and 'retrieval'

information not retrieval
finds documents containing 'information' but not 'retrieval'

(information not retrieval) and WAIS
finds documents containing 'WAIS', plus 'information' but not 'retrieval'

web*
finds documents containing words starting with 'web'

To find information about a topic, simply type in a few keywords. The more detailed your query, the more relevant your results.

Our search engine also comes with some advanced capabilities to help you find exactly what you're looking for. These capabilities are best shown with a few examples:

Note on case sensitivity - only search words or phrases containing an upper case character will be treated as case sensitive. A search on "internet" will match "Internet", "INTERNET", and "InTerNet", while the search term "INTERNET" would match only links with INTERNET (in uppercase) in them.

Prefacing a search term with a "special" character can greatly help you to narrow your searches....

Symbol

Translation

Example

Usage

+ / and

Require this term +internet Will only display listings that contain the word "internet"

- / not

Forbid this term -web

or ...

+internet -web

Will only display listings that DO NOT contain the word "web"

or

Prefer this term +internet or web This will find all listings containing "internet", and will rank those that also contain the word "web" a bit higher. (since web is "preferred")

url:

Find all entries belonging to a given domain or matching a file name url:www.mysite.com

url:*asp

The top example will return all entries in the www.mysite.com domain. The lower example shows how you could find every .asp page listed in the engine.

*

Match anything inter*

 

You can use the asterisk as a "wildcard" to match parts of a word. In our example, the search would return any listing with any word starting with "inter". The asterisk does have one limitation: it cannot span words - that is, the query "mat*arts" would not match the first sentence of this description - and it can represent at most four letters or numbers. To avoid overly broad searches, the asterisk can only be used in words or phrases which have at least three characters, so a search for "th*" or "an*" would be ignored.