Advanced Search "Tips & Tricks" page from BBCi Search

 by Martin Belam, 31 July 2003

At BBCi Search we published a page today outlining some of the advanced search syntax that can be used on both the web search and the site search. With the changes nearly complete at the back-end it has been the first time we have been able to issue anything approaching a guide to how to use advanced search across the site.

The previous mix of technologies meant you needed a flow-chart of the site's technical architecture before you could work out which rules would apply when. And using the old system we got a steady stream of email feedback from our users pointing out the inconsistencies and inadequacies.

Although site search still does not cover searching for the audio content available via the audio on demand radio player, and the BBC News content is still kept in a separate index to ensure freshness, over the last couple of days my colleagues have finally launched the most accurate and comprehensive site search the BBC have ever had across their web sites.

It has been a process that has taken over a year, but is now providing a service that I think my colleagues on search can be proud of. And I am pleased to have been part of it.

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