/[webpac-proto]/search/snippets/help.html
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1 <HTML>
2 <HEAD>
3 <META NAME="GENERATOR" CONTENT="Adobe PageMill 2.0 Mac">
4 <TITLE> FS Consulting - MPS Search Interface </TITLE>
5 </HEAD>
6 <BODY BGCOLOR="#ffffff">
7
8 <TABLE BORDER=0 WIDTH=100%>
9 <TR><TD VALIGN=TOP ALIGN=RIGHT COLSPAN=3> <A HREF="/"><IMG SRC="/demonstrations/search/images/banner.gif" ALT="Home" BORDER=0></A> </TD></TR>
10 <TR><TD VALIGN=TOP ALIGN=CENTER> <H2>How to Search a database</H> </TD> </TR>
11 </TABLE>
12
13 <H3>Basic Searches:</H3>
14
15 <P>For basic searching, you just need to supply a word or a set of words
16 which will be used by the search engine to look documents. So you could
17 look for 'animals', 'information retrieval systems' or 'user interface design'.
18 The search engine will assume that the words are ORed together in the absence
19 of other operators.</P>
20
21 <H3>Wildcard Searches:</H3>
22
23 <P>You may also do wildcard searched, so you could look for 'comput*' and
24 the search engine will look for all words which begin with 'comput', so
25 it will search for 'computer', 'computing', 'computational', etc.</P>
26
27 <H3>Boolean Searches:</H3>
28
29 <P>Boolean searches are also supported, so you may do things like 'lowland
30 <B>AND</B> gorilla', or 'animals <B>NOT</B> gorilla'. Note that the operators
31 need to be in <B>UPPER CASE</B>.</P>
32
33 <P>You may also nest boolean searches using brackets, so you can do '(lowland
34 <B>OR</B> gorilla) AND animals'.</P>
35
36 <P>Booleans are implemented in a 'smart' way in that operators have precendence,
37 so 'microsoft <B>AND</B> graphical user interfaces' will be evaluated as
38 'microsoft <B>AND</B> (graphical <B>OR</B> user <B>OR</B> interfaces)'.</P>
39
40 <H3>Proximity Searches:</H3>
41
42 <P>Proximity searching is also available by using the <B>ADJ</B> operator.
43 So to find all documents in which 'microsoft' and 'windows' are adjacent,
44 you would use 'microsoft <B>ADJ</B> windows'.</P>
45
46 <P>A simpler alternative syntax for proximity searches is to use quotes,
47 so the search described above would look like &quot;microsoft windows&quot;.</P>
48
49 <H3>Fielded Searches:</H3>
50
51 <P>Fielded searching is available for any database which supports it. To
52 restrict a search to a particular field, you need to enter the field name
53 followed by the equal sign, followed by the value you want to search, so
54 to look for 'marchionini' in the 'author' field, you would use 'author=marchionini'.</P>
55
56 <P>You can also combine field searches with brackets, so 'author=(marchionini
57 AND florance)' would search for records which have 'marchionini' and 'florance'
58 as authors.</P>
59
60 <H3>Range Searching:</H3>
61
62 <P>Range searching can also be performed on any numeric field, for example
63 to search for all documents that were published after 1993 (assuming that
64 the database had a 'date' field) you would use 'date&gt;1993'.</P>
65
66 <P><HR ALIGN=CENTER WIDTH=50%></P>
67
68 <H3>Putting it all together:</H3>
69
70 <P>So the following searches are legal:</P>
71
72 <PRE>
73 author=marchionini AND date&gt;1993
74
75 title=encyclopedia AND author=marchionini
76
77 (lowland AND gorilla) OR (animals AND plants)</PRE>
78
79 <P>this is not the same as:</P>
80
81 <PRE>
82 lowland AND gorilla OR animals AND plants</PRE>
83
84 <P>which would be evaluated as:</P>
85
86 <PRE>
87 lowland AND (gorilla OR animals) AND plants</PRE>
88
89 <HR ALIGN=CENTER WIDTH=50%>
90
91 <H3>Soundex Searches:</H3>
92
93 <P>The use of 'soundex' is also supported in searches. This is useful for
94 names, for example, when one is unsure of the spelling or if there are a
95 number of spelling variants. For example if I were to look for documents
96 containing the name 'tognazini' and I were unsure whether it is spelt with
97 two 'n's and/or two 'z's, I would be able to use the soundex capability
98 to search for the documents as follows 'soundex[tognazini]'. The server
99 will expand the term and list all the variants in the query report. The
100 user could then browse it to look at them and decide which is the correct
101 spelling. You can also restrict the 'soundex' operation to certain fields
102 such as 'author=soundex[tognazini]'.</P>
103
104 <H3>Typographical Searches:</H3>
105
106 <P>The use of 'typographical variation' is also supported in searches. This
107 is useful when searching for words which could be mis-spelled, for example,
108 if 'animals' is spelled 'anmials'. This operator looks for simple typos
109 and juxtaposed letters. I would be able to use this capability to search
110 for the documents as follows 'typo[animals]'. You can also restrict the
111 'soundex' operation to certain fields such as 'author=typo[animals]'.</P>
112
113 <H3>Using the Forms Interface to Search:</H3>
114
115 <P>The forms provide a way of structuring the searches for the user so that
116 they dont have to remember what field are available in the different datababase.
117 The basic input field will accept any kind of query from the user, while
118 the titled fields will accept text for searching on that particular field
119 only. The user can fill in any of the fields and they will be ANDed together
120 before searching.</P>
121
122 <H3>Stemming:</H3>
123
124 <P>Two types of stemming are available, one is a plural stemmer (which is
125 used for both sample databases offered here), and the other is a Porter.
126 Both stemmers will handle US and UK English.</P>
127
128 <!--#include virtual="/demonstrations/search/snippets/footer.html" -->
129
130 </BODY>
131 </HTML>

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