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Tips on how to better use "Search" function

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I realize I could use some help getting the most out of the Search functions on this HSOforum. For example, today I tried searching for info on a specific rod, the Jason Mitchell Meat Stick. I just typed this into the search box but got all sorts of unrelated hits.

I read the Advanced Search tips but realize I need an interpretation of these tips. There are four of them:

1. +keyword for required keywords" Using my example, what should I have done?

2. -keyword to exclude posts with a keyword. I have no idea what this means.

3. Use quotes to search for a phrase. I guess that might mean "Jason Mitchell Meat Stick", to tell the search function that I want the whole phrase.

4. Use an * at the end of a word to match partial words. I do not understand this at all.

Someone out there is probably a wiz at this and I would appreciate any guidance. There is a ton of good info on these forums I would like to mine.

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Did you use the search box on the left column? If not try that its much better.

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Did you use the search box on the left column? If not try that its much better.

Yep, what he said.

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To answer the specific questions, these are the same type of parameters that you can/should use with any search engine (Google/Yahoo/Bing/etc)

--Using the +

This enables you to put an emphasis on a specific word in your search. If you were looking for "men's rubber boots" but the search kept bringing back all kinds of results for "men's" stuff and "rubber" items, you could put enter "men's rubber boots+" with the plus and that puts extra emphasis on the boots. It becomes a keyword in your search. In your situation this wouldn't be very helpful.

--Using the -

If your search for a "Jason Mitchell Meat Stick" kept coming up with posts from the Cooking section about meat sales or types of meat, you could type "-sales" or "-beef" which would eliminate many of the erroneous results.

--Using quotes

In your specific search, using quotations would be the right move. It means that the search engine will look only for results that contain the specific phrase "Jason Mitchell Meat Stick." Normally a search engine would return any HSOforum that has those four words. If your search was just for "fishing rods" the quotations wouldn't be helpful, but they are when searching for a unique phrase such as "Jason Mitchell Meat Stick."

--Using the *

Not helpful in your situation again, but if you were searching for "riggings" you could instead type "rig*" and it will return any results that start with those first three letters, so riggings, rigs, rigid, etc.... That's not a great example but hopefully you get the idea

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I understood most of that, and use the quotes and + all the time. Refines the results tremendously.

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Thanks to all you guys. This will help immensely. Glad I asked.

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Good post!! I had given up on using the Search function, it was so carpy!!! Didn't know there was search function on the left either, I normally just ignore all all the garbage/ads on the left and right.

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