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This page contains precise instructions on how to use the Yahoo Search Engine to search the World-Wide-Web. If you store this page in your Favourites Folder (I.E.) or Bookmark (Netscape) you will save a copy on your PC so that you can always read it (off-line) later, before embarking upon a future search.
Examples of the Boolean Search strings are provided by YAHOO UK & Ireland and Microsoft FrontPage, all copyrights acknowledged.
You can jump right in and use the text panel below (query box) to search for documents across the Internet containing specific words or combinations of words. Enter your text (Search String) into the panel and click the Submit Button The text search engine will display a weighted list of matching documents, with better matches shown first. Each list item is a link to a matching document; if the document has a title it will be shown, otherwise only the document's file name is displayed. For the more adventurous a brief explanation of the query language is available, along with examples.
FACHRS is authorised to use and link to the search engine provided by Yahoo UK & Ireland. To return to FACHRS after your search just use the Back Button on your Browser
How to use Yahoo! Search
If you know exactly what you're looking for or even have a general idea, try using Yahoo! search. Specify a keyword or set of keywords, and Yahoo! will search its entire database to find listings that match the keywords you provide.
After you have specified keyword(s) inside the query box and clicked on the search button, Yahoo will search through the five areas of its database for keyword matches. The five areas are:
|Yahoo! Web Sites|
|Yahoo!'s Net Events|
|Most Recent News Articles.|
The first page returned to you will be a list of matching Yahoo Categories followed by a list of matching Yahoo Sites. If no matching Yahoo Categories and Sites are found, Yahoo will automatically perform a Web-wide, full-text document search using the Inktomi search engine.
If you want to further customise your search, you have two options at your disposal:
- go to the search options page and follow the instructions, or
- specify options along with the keywords inside the query box using our advanced search syntax.
How Yahoo! Search Works
After you have specified keyword(s) inside the query box and clicked on the search button, Yahoo (unless otherwise specified) will search through the five areas of its database for keyword matches. The five areas are:
|Yahoo! Web Sites|
|Yahoo! Net Events|
Yahoo! first finds all the keyword matches and then sorts the results according to relevancy within each specific area. Yahoo! ranks results in the following manner:
|Multiple Keyword Matches: Documents matching more of the keywords will have a higher rank than those matching less.|
|Document Section Weighting: Documents matching words found in the Title are ranked higher than those found in its Body or URL.|
|Generality of Category: Categories matching higher up in the Yahoo tree hierarchy (i.e.- more general categories) are ranked higher than those deeper in the hierarchy (i.e. - more narrowly focused categories)|
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Tips for Better Searching
Search Options (courtesy of Yahoo!) provides a simple method of narrowing down your search without knowing how to use using Boolean expressions
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Examples of how to create "Search Strings"
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 PRO
- finds documents containing 'PRO', plus 'information' but not 'retrieval'
- finds documents containing words starting with 'web'
|Specify Words that Must Appear in the Results|
Attach a + in front words that must appear in result documents. Note there is no space between the + and police
|Specify Words that Should Not Appear in the Results|
Attach a - in front of words that must not appear in result documents. Note there is no space between the - and monty
Advanced Search syntax is available to you within Yahoo's search query box. Using the syntax will allow you to better tailor search results without having to visit the Search Options page. It also will allow you to tap into features currently not offered on the search options page. There are 4 types of query syntax available:
|Required and Prohibited Search Words|
|Document Section Restrictions|
Prohibited Search Words|
Attaching one of the following operators will either require or prohibit words from appearing in the search results.
Attaching a + to a word requires that the word be found in all of the search results.
Try a live comparison: police versus police +sting
Attaching a - in front of a word requires that the word not be found in any of the search results.
Try a live comparison: python versus python -monty
|Document Section Restrictions|
Attaching one the following operators to the front of a search word will restrict the search to a certain document sections.
t: - will restrict searches to document titles only
Try a live comparison: joe boxer versus t:joe boxer
u: - will restrict searches to document URLs only
Try a live comparison: intel versus u:intel
|Phrase Matching ("
Putting quotes around a set of words will only find results that match the words in that exact sequence.
Try a live comparison: great barrier reef versus "great barrier reef"
|Wildcard Matching (*)|
Attaching a * to the right-hand side of a word will return left side partial matches.
Try a live comparison: cap versus cap*
Combining the Syntax
You may combine any of the query syntax as long as the syntax is combined in the proper order. The proper order for using the syntax is the same order that the operators are listed on this page. That is, +, -, t:, u:, "" and lastly *.
Try a live comparison: (correct) +t:football -American versus (incorrect) t:+football -American
Time Restrictions You can restrict your search to documents that are more recent than a certain date. There is no search query syntax available for restricting by time. This feature can only be accessed from the search options page.
Displaying Results You can customise the number of search results displayed on all result pages following the summary page (the layout of the summary page is fixed). There is no search query syntax option available for customising the number of displayed results. This feature can only be accessed from the search options page.