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Using RILM

A guide on how to use RILM, a database on scholarly works concerning music.

Boolean

By using Boolean operators, you can construct searching that can include and exclude elements as well as have alternate versions of terms.

There are three Boolean operators that RILM uses.

The first Boolean operator is "AND." This tells the search engine that you want both these words to show up in your search.


The search mode that does this for you automatically is the "Find all my search terms." But if you were in the "Boolean/Phrase" mode, then you would want to add "AND" between each word within a given box.

This type of search is similar to Google, and it is particularly useful when you want all the words you put in the search box to show up somewhere in the record.




The second Boolean operator is "OR." This tells the search engine that you want at least one of the words you pick to show up in your search term. This is a particularly useful operator to use when there are common synonyms to the words that you are using.

When you are doing this type of search using Parentheses around the terms that are interchangeable is very helpful.

The search mode that does this for you automatically is the "Find any of my search terms"
In the example here, the searcher was interested in (almost) any type of keyboard music...


The last one Boolean operator is "NOT." This tells the search engine that you do not want the word to show up in your search. Generally, this is not an operator that you will want to use often, since if you use it you will probably end up without some important or useful results. However, occasionally it can be useful when you have too many results and most of them are not relevant.

There is no search mode that will do this automatically for you (mostly because that would be a little counterproductive).

So what you need to do is enter "NOT" in the search box right before the word (or words in quotes) that you want to make sure is (or are) not to be included in your end results.

Generally when you are doing this type of search, you should be in the "Boolean/Phrase" search mode -- although for this particular mode, make sure that you include "AND"s between the words to get the largest number of results (otherwise the search engine might miss results).


If you had done the search including both it would turn out this way:


If you did not care whether or not records included Johann, then the results would have been like this:


Content compiled/Written by G. D.