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On Your Own: Improving simple Search Results

In your exercises so far, you have had a chance to do some searching by entering just one or more keywords (the simplest of searches).
Simple search queries are quick to compose, but they can return large numbers of results that take longer to look through. Many of the results may not be of value to you. More complex search queries should return fewer results with a greater proportion of useful results, but they take longer to think about and compose.
Take a minute or two to imagine that you could give spoken instructions to your keyword query about how it could improve its results. What would you tell it to do?

You might say:
  1. "Look for more results like this one, not these others."
  2. "Only look for current references, just the last few months."
  3. "This is the most important word or phrase; if you do not find it, the other keywords are not important."
  4. "Go back through these results and this time search for this other phrase."
The techniques described in this module effectively let you give these kinds of instructions to your search queries. As you go through the lessons, note which operators are most useful for the types of searches you most often need, or will need to perform.