Boolean Text Searches

Boolean text search is an extremely powerful tool available on numerous search engines such as Alta Vista and Excite. By using boolean operators AND, OR, NOT, and NEAR, it is possible to eliminate many extraneous hits. This comes in very handy when the search needs to be narrowed. For example, consider searching for animation vs. animation NEAR alias.

On the other hand, if looking for a phrase does not produce enough hits, replacing the phrase with a boolean expression may produce many more hits: "virtual pets" vs. virtual NEAR pets.

All search engines have on-line help that explains the basic search techniques and strategies. Below are two links to Alta Vista's help pages:

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