More Complex Query Syntax

As you learn more about how the Metamorph Query Language works, your queries can become more complex, if so desired. Two key factors which are part of any query, along with a statement of the search items you are looking for, are intersection quantity and delimited text unit.

Search items can be weighted, by marking them for inclusion with a plus sign `+', or for exclusion with a minus sign `-'. All other search items are considered equally weighted.

It is understood that the maximum number of unmarked search items will always be looked for, unless a designation follows those sets of `@#'; i.e., the at sign `@' followed by the desired number of intersections; i.e., 0-9+. Designating "@0" would mean "zero intersections required".

For example, one might enter this query:

     +Near East @1 military political economic involvement

This query would locate any sentences which definitely contained a reference to one of the countries in the Near East set, and also contained at least one intersection of 2 of the 4 specified search sets: "military", "political", "economic", and "involvement". Thus it would retrieve the following sentence, where the words in curly braces indicate the set to which the preceding word member belongs:

Troops in Turkey {Near East} became engaged {involvement} in a heated battle {military} when a training exercise was misinterpreted as a hostile initiative.

You can further qualify the type of search results you are after by changing the delimiters which dictate the proximity of entered concepts. This can be done by adding to the query line "w/delim" where "delim" is either "line", "sent", "para", or "page". (NOTE: "page" only works where page formatting characters exist in the text.) Or you can just choose an arbitrary number of characters to search within; like: "w/250" to indicate a window of 500 characters (250 forward, 250 back) around the first search item found.

Therefore you could change the nature of the above query:

     +Near East @1 military political economic involvement w/para

By adding a delimiter specification "w/para", you are instructing Metamorph to search by paragraph rather than by sentence. The required proximity of concept is now much broader. More paragraphs will be found to fit all the search requirements than sentences. But the sentences are likely to be closer matches to the query, as the correlation of concept had to be a closer match.

In addition to entering English questions and keywords, Metamorph has several special pattern matchers which allow the user to search for practically any type of expression. Any such expression is a valid search item, which can be assigned a logic operator, and searched for in proximity to other keywords, concepts, or expressions, as outlined in the previous section.

All the above things are covered elsewhere in detail. Their strength can be drawn upon where very specific types of results are desired.

Metamorph lets you create new and varied viewpoints as to what the originator of the files might have intended, without hours of preprocessing or knowledge engineering. These new views and impressions can be informative, educational, and useful, enhancing content analysis and data correlation.


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