Search Help

Here are several tips that will help you get better search results.

-- Exact phrases: If you are searching for an exact phrase, enclose it in quotes. Instead of weapons of mass destruction, search for "weapons of mass destruction" to find articles with the exact phrase in them.

-- Boolean expressions. Big name for a simple concept. Booleans let you expand or limit results by inserting common "connector" words like AND, OR and NOT.

* AND: Inserting the Boolean AND in a search string ensures that results contain all of the words in the string. A Boolean search using AND would be formatted like this:

weapons AND mass AND destruction.

* OR: Inserting the Boolean OR in a string will return articles that have any of the terms, but not necessarily all of them. To use the Boolean OR, simply ad OR between each word as detailed below:

weapons OR mass OR destruction.

* NOT: Inserting the Boolean NOT in a search string brings back all terms except the one following NOT. The example below will bring back documents that DON’T have the word destruction in them.

weapons mass NOT destruction

-- Search rankings: The ranking is the percentage you see to the right of your search results, and it considers frequency, placement and proximity when determining how each article is ranked. Here is a quick explanation of frequency, placement and proximity:

* Frequency: The number of times your search term appears in the document. The more times it appears, the higher the rank.

* Placement: How close to the top of the article your search term appears. The higher the term appears in the article, the higher the rank for that search result.

* Proximity: How close together do words appear in an article when you’re searching for multiple words. The closer the search terms are to each other, the higher the article will rank.

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