Excite for Web Servers gives web users access to a sophisticated concept-based
searching engine. But even though the search engine is advanced, users
can form queries without using a complicated query language. This page
will help you to choose the queries that will give you the best
A query is simply a description of an information need. Unlike Boolean
systems that search for just those documents containing all the
words in your query, Excite for Web Servers will search for documents that are a
best match for the words in your query. Excite for Web Servers will also search for
documents that are about the same concepts that your query describes,
so sometimes Excite for Web Servers will bring back articles that don't mention
any of the words in your original query.
What this means is that your query -- the description of your
information need -- can be as detailed as you like. Don't worry about
providing too many words; the more words, the better. Additional words
in your query will help Excite for Web Servers figure out what concepts you're
really interested in. On the other hand, Excite for Web Servers will do a pretty
good job of figuring out what documents are interesting to you even if
your query is vague.
For example, let's say you're searching a web site for documents about
customer support for the Widget2000 product you're using. A good
starting point would be
customer support for the Widget2000
If you have a question about a particular feature of the Widget2000,
for example the Blurfl upgrade package, you might choose a query like
customer support for the Blurfl upgrade package
of the Widget2000
Even if there are no documents that are actually about the Blurfl
upgrade, Excite for Web Servers will still show you documents about Widget2000
Advanced Query Tips
Here are some suggestions for getting the best results out of
Excite for Web Servers.
- Only use words that are relevant to your query
If you're looking for documents about the Widget2000, don't enter a
query like "
Find me all documents about the Widget2000". Excite for Web Servers
considers all the words in your query to be part of your
information need, so queries like the previous example will find all
documents about finding all documents about the Widget2000, which
may not be exactly what you want.
- Specify multiple forms of the same phrases
Excite for Web Servers distinguishes between hyphenated and un-hyphenated words. So,
sometimes it might be necessary to explicitly say that you want both
versions, for example "
CDROM CD-ROM". Excite for Web Servers will try to figure
CD-ROM are the same, but it never hurts to
explicitly specify multiple forms.
- Common words are ignored
Excite for Web Servers doesn't index common words like a, and, or the.
Consequently, those words in your query will be ignored. Excite for Web Servers also
ignores numbers; however, it can find strings that happen to contain a
number, for example 3Com.
Last Modified: 02 July 1997