Search tips

This page gives instructions for using our website search.

In the search box you can:

  • enter a list of words for these to be searched for in any order
  • enter a phrase "in quotes" for this phrase to be matched exactly
  • use a star * to indicate missing characters
  • prefix any word with + to indicate that it must be present
  • prefix any word with - to exclude any results with this word
  • prefix any word with ~ to give it minor importance

You can choose to search for:

  • Page names - your search is matched to page names
  • Highlights - your search is matched to page content keywords highlighted by users
  • Page text - you search is matched to page content
  • Blog text - you search is matched to blog content
  • Pictures - your search is matched to picture names

Searches are case insensitive and all possible results are listed in order of how well they match your search criteria.

Tip: The wild-card * is useful for finding things where you are not quite sure of the spelling or ending - you can enter the first few characters followed by *.  For example a* will match all words starting with a.  Remember that without a * the search tries to match your words exactly as given.

Pages that are indexed well with keywords tend to give the best results.  This works like a traditional book index where an editor has selected particular keywords of importance to link back to that page.  It is hoped that as this site is built and continues to grow then keywords will be a useful feature.

Note that words of three characters or less are considered 'trivial' and not included in any searches.   Also not included are a number of very common usage words.  By 'not included we mean that the words are not indexed and are ignored in any search.

Back to the Search page.

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