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|Editor: Christopher Dyer|
Type: Help Information
Intention: Not for Publication
Read/Write Permissions: Open Access
26.10.2009 - Christopher Dyer - Sci-Mate
 Tips for Searching
 Go is case sensitive
The "go" function uses an algorithm to decide what page you're likely to be interested in, and this usually masks its case sensitivity - but not always. For more details about this please see Wikipedia:Go button
<a id="Avoid_short_and_common_words" name="Avoid_short_and_common_words"></a>
 Avoid short and common words
If your search terms include a common stop word (such as the, your, more, right, while, when, who, which, such, every, about), you may see many irrelevant results.
 Words with special characters
In a search for a word with a diaeresis, such as Sint Odiliënberg, it depends whether this ë is stored as one character or as "ë". In the first case one can simply search for Odilienberg (or Odiliënberg); in the second case it can only be found by searching for Odili, euml and/or nberg. This is actually a bug that should be fixed -- the entities should be folded into their raw character equivalents so all searches on them are equivalent.
 Words in single quotes
If a word appears in an article with single quotes, you can only find it if you search for the word with quotes. Since this is rarely desirable, it is better to use double quotes in articles for which this problem does not arise. See the <a title="Wikipedia:Manual of style" href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Manual_of_style">Wikipedia manual of style</a> for more info.
An apostrophe is identical to a single quote, therefore the name Mu'ammar can be found only by searching for exactly that (and not otherwise). A word with 's is an exception in that it can be found also by searching for the word without the apostrophe and the s.
 Phrases in double quotes -- exact match only
A phrase can easily be found by enclosing it in double quotes. For example, "holly dolly" returns six matches; holly dolly (two standalone words) returns 197.
 Namespaces searched by default
The search only applies to the <a title="Wikipedia:Namespace" href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Namespace">namespaces</a> selected in the user's <a title="Special:Preferences" href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Preferences">preferences</a>. To search the other namespaces, check or uncheck the <a title="Checkbox" href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Checkbox">checkboxes</a> in the "Search in namespaces" box found at the bottom of a search results page. Depending on the <a title="Web browser" href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_browser">web browser</a> in use, a box may still be checked from a previous search, but without being effective any longer! To make sure, uncheck and then recheck it.
Searching the image namespace means searching the image descriptions, i.e. the first parts of the image description pages.
 The source text is searched
The source text (what one sees in the edit box, also called wiki text) is searched. This distinction is relevant for piped links, for interlanguage links (to find links to Chinese articles, search for zh, not for Zhongwen), special characters (if ê is coded as ê it is found searching for ecirc), etc.
 Delay in updating the search index
For reasons of efficiency and priority, very recent changes are not always immediately taken into account in searches.
 Searching for external links
<a title="Special:Linksearch" href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Linksearch">Special:Linksearch</a> is a tool for searching for links from Articles to sites outside Wikipedia.
 External search engines
Various search engines can provide domain-specific searches, which let you search Sci-Mate specifically. Searches are based on the text as shown by the browser, so wiki markup is irrelevant. Depending on your browser, you may also be able to use tools that allow you to search Articles using <a title="Bookmarklet" href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bookmarklet">bookmarklets</a>.
In general, external search engines are faster than a Sci-Mate searches. However, because the search engine's cache is based on when the site was indexed, the search may not return newly created pages. Similarly, the search engine's cached version of the page will not be as up-to-date as the link to Sci-Mate itself. Also, when returning Articles in a regular search, mirrors and forks of Sci-Mate content frequently rank higher than the actual Articles because of search engine optimization techniques.
These issues may be less of a problem when using certain search engines that process Sci-Mate differently:
- Google tends to include Sci-Mate as part of its normal search, and it comes up fairly accurately.
- Yahoo! includes Sci-Mate as part of its content acquisition program and gets a regular datafeed.
- Clusty downloads and processes the database regularly, generating automatic abstracts and image thumbnails and meaningfully parsing redirects, disambiguations, and categories.
- Qwika only indexes wikis, and thus mirrors do not appear in their results.
By following the links below, you can use the Google search engine to search Articles - either all languages, or English-only. Google indexes all namespaces.
If you frequently search via Google, consider installing the Google Toolbar. Using the "search this site" button allows you to quickly search the Sci-Mate. The official Google Toolbar is available in versions for Firefox, Linux, Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows, and Internet Explorer.
- <a rel="nofollow" title="http://toolbar.google.com/" class="external text" href="http://toolbar.google.com/">Install Google Toolbar</a>
Note: It is important not to use spaces in the search. To add more parameters to the search, separate them by a plus sign, +. For a phrase search, use a hyphen (minus sign), -, between each word. E.g. to search for "Tip of the day", use Tip-of-the-day.
To provide a link to a Sci-Mate-specific search, include in the google-link +site:sci-mate.org (no spaces before or after), like this:
Which looks like this:
- <a title="google:alpha_protein+sci-mate.org" class="extiw" href="http://www.google.com/search?q=alpha_protein%2Bsite:sci-mate.org">google:alpha_protein+site:sci-mate.org</a></dd>
To clean up the link so that only the part you want to show is presented, use the pipe, like this:
 If you cannot find an appropriate page on Sci-Mate
If there is no appropriate page on Sci-Mate, consider creating a page, since you can edit Articles right now.