2. During the search: What did I find? How do I sift through information?

2.2. What happens if I do not find what I am looking for? Readjusting standards

2.2.2. Advanced searches

The most powerful search engines usually provide advanced search options that may be really useful for an initial automatic screening of the results obtained, as long as the different parameters for our search have been previously defined and established.

The most frequent parameters in advanced search options are listed below:

  • Including or excluding terms. This allows us to define whether the search results should include all the terms introduced in the form, if they should include all the results in which any of the defined terms is present or else if they should show results without any specific term requirements.
  • The search may be restricted to a specific sentence or wording.
  • Narrowing down the search so that only results written in a given language are retrieved.
  • Narrow down the search to the most recent updates of the pages included in the search engine database.
  • Determine whether search terms should appear in the title, in the full text, in the website URL or in the links it contains.
  • Choosing the information format in which we want our results to be in.
  • Search for sites that link to a given website or domain.
Figure 22. Google Advanced search

Each search engine combines a given set of advanced search options depending on the way it works.

We may perform this search by directly applying filters in the search box, using operators that may be combined with other operators, such as Boolean operators:

define: word This is used to search for the definition of the word we are looking for.
site: websiteURL It allows for searching for a given word in a given website.
info: websiteURL This is used to obtain information on the website, such as the cache version stored, similar websites or sites that redirect to this website.
filetype: filextension It finds pages that contain files of the previously specified types (PPT, PDF, XLS, DOC, etc.), related to the defined keyword.
inurl or allinurl: word It searches for websites that contain the word in its URL.
allintitle or intitle: word It searches for websites that contain the specified word in its title texts.
@: word /user name It searches for social tags or users in Twitter, Instagram and other social networks.
#: word This is used to search for tags in social networks.
…number …number
It allows for searching between number and dates intervals.