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Old 14 Jul 2006, 04:07   #6 (permalink)
MalVeauX
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Alachua, Florida
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Default Re: Recoilless' guide to searching

Just to add a little note to add:

The key to searching is the same as when you're looking up a word in a dictionary. You don't just blinding flip through the book hoping to land on what you were looking for. You follow a natural process of specifying what you need until you find it. You start with a broad category. You find it. You narrow down where in that category what you're looking for fits. And you just keep going until you find it or until you determine it's not there.

To do this, you should probably always use the Advanced Search feature. This allows you to narrow your search to specific parts of the forum. After all, there's no sense in searching Tau advise from non-Tau army boards or off-topic an general topic areas which don't even have anything to do with 40k. You can easily select where you want the search to be carried out. Search only where it looks like the information you seek may be--common sense goes very far and can help you find things more quickly.

You can also narrow your search to search the contents of a thread, or just the topic titles. This can help you go much faster. For example, if you just want to look at Tau topics concerning Eldar, you may just search the Tau forum (and only the Tau forum) for topics that contain the word "Eldar." You'll find a lot of information faster, than filtering through thousands of posts where the word is mentioned, in threads that have nothing to do with what you're looking for. That's a common sense way to narrow it down and find what you need.

Another big thing about searching, which isn't even noted on the search features is the specific use of quotations in your search. For example:

[size=11pt]Search: the running game[/size]

If you entered that into the search feature, you would find anything concerning those three words. This will make it more difficult to find something specific, but it will make the search more broad, allowing more returned items to view.

Quotations can make it more specific:

[size=11pt]Search: "the running game"[/size]

When you use quotations around a group of words, it tells the search code to only find exactly that phrase, and not just the words. This is very specific. And this kind of search may return with very few hits that have relevant text, but it will be exactly what you typed.

(Note: in those examples given, the first search without quotations gave me 30 pages worth of hits. That's way too many to find something specific. Using quotations, the same search provided only 3 actual hits. Not 30 pages worth of hits, but just 3 hits. The difference is, they were exactly the phrase I wanted and I found exactly what I typed. This can be a speedy process to finding things that have already been asked and answered.)

[size=11pt]Searching is your friend![/size]
And a big thanks to Recoilles for reminding everyone!

Cheers!

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