[MUD-Dev] Re: Intelligent WebGlimpse archive searching at Kanga.Nu

J C Lawrence claw at under.engr.sgi.com
Fri Jan 8 20:28:23 New Zealand Daylight Time 1999

On Fri, 8 Jan 1999 21:17:50 +0000 (GMT) 
Marian Griffith<gryphon at iaehv.nl> wrote:

> On Thu 07 Jan, J C Lawrence wrote:
>> Quoting from
>> http://glimpse.cs.arizona.edu/glimpsehelp.html#sect11 (slightly
>> reformatted):

> [everything snipped]

> I am absolutely convinced that this is all extremely smart and
> wonder- full. But what does it mean? 

MUD-Dev is archived on the web at Kanga.Nu.  The archives are
searchable.  The problem, per se, is that often the simple searches
return too many hits.  Search for "skill trees" and you get an
unmanagably large set of messages in return.  It is useful to be
able to narrow the field of search by adding logic to the search
pattern, by being able to say what must be present, what must not,
what may be present etc.

The answer is the ability to do more complex, or "intelligent"
searches, which use logic (AND, OR, NOT etc) to phrase a search
pattern that (hopefully) matches only what you are interested in.
In essence this is the same thing as the '+' and '-' signs with
AltaVista, or the "must contain" and "must not contain" fields with

> I know I am not the brightest light around this list, but would it
> by any chance be possible to translate this in something
> resembling english, please?  

Dominic J. Eidson did a good job of the rest, providing examples and
such, so I'll leave that bit there.

> I understand patterns, though I somehow doubt we are talking about
> the same thing here. But simple strings, strings with classes of
> characters sets of strings, wild cards and regular expressions....
> Do I need to know about that?

Outside of the simple logic patterns that Dominic described, you can
also do more complicated expressions called "regular expressions", a
(massively useful) thing inherited from Unix.  Regular expressions
are not trivial to describe usefully, but the following may help:

More simply (ha!), regular expressions allow one to define the exact
contents of a match, down to what letters and words may or must or
must not be present, in what order, and what may or may not lay
between them.

J C Lawrence                              Internet: claw at kanga.nu
(Contractor)                             Internet: coder at kanga.nu
---------(*)                    Internet: claw at under.engr.sgi.com
...Honorary Member of Clan McFud -- Teamer's Avenging Monolith...

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