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This chapter is from the book

OR Searches

OR searches cast a much broader net than AND searches and may result in a very large number of hits for you to consider. They make good sense, though, when there's more than one way that the person, object, or thing you're looking for might be referred to within a Web page or other document. If you're researching the Clinton presidency, for example, you'd want to look for references to President Clinton or Bill Clinton or William Jefferson Clinton.

Some search engines perform an OR search by default. In other words, if you type several words or phrases, leaving a space between each one, the search engine assumes that you want to find references to any one of them: "President Clinton" "Bill Clinton" "William Jefferson Clinton".

Other search engines require you to actually type the word OR between the words or phrases: Greenspan OR "Federal Reserve Chairman". Full caps may or may not be required for the word OR, but using them is a good habit to get into.

Finally, some search engines offer OR searching as a menu option or radio button. You type your search words and phrases and then choose the option labeled Any of the Words or some such (as opposed to All the Words). See Figures 3.5 and 3.6 for examples.

03fig05.gif

Figure 3.5 Choosing Any of the Words from a menu like this is the way you tell some search engines to perform an OR search.

03fig06.gif

Figure 3.6 Here's another approach to OR searching. Type the words in the Any of These Words field to indicate that the search engine should look for any of the words you've typed in the search form.

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