Restricting the search area
Controlling where the search engine searches

Why restrict your search?
Restricting the area in which a search engine will conduct the search can help narrow down the number of results and possibly give you better results.

Date restricting
Many search engines offer the ability to limit searches by web page creation dates. This is a very useful tool for people who will be doing continuing research on a specific topic - enabling them to limit the results to pages created since their last search. It is also useful when searching for current event topics.

NOTE: The implementation of this feature varies widely. Some search engines like Yahoo offer radio buttons or pull-down menus, while AltaVista and Hotbot provide the ability to specify dates or time frames. Also, date restriction is related to the web page creation date, not some historical time frame, i.e. it would not be useful to use an engine's date capability to search for 1907 and information relating to the Wright brothers, since there were no web pages created in 1907 (in fact the web has really only existed in its present form since 1991).

Restricting searches to specific parts of documents
Some engines can limit searches to specific areas of the webpage, the most common being: title and URL. Here's an example of a title search: If you are looking for information on Alternative Medicine and believe that there are probably whole websites or pages devoted to your subject which have the keywords in the titles, you could use the syntax: title: "alternative medicine".

An example of URL search would be if you are looking for something that you know will be in the Apple Computer website. You could use: url: which would return only web pages created by the computer maker Apple.

Restricting searches to specific areas of the web
Some engines allow you to limit your searches to "just the web" or just "newsgroups."

Restricting searches to specific geographic locations
Some engines allow you to limit your searches to only webpages hosted in specified country

Restricting searches to specific media
Both Hotbot and AltaVista provide you with the ability to search for various types of media, including audio, video, images, Java and VRML. If you are looking only for images of Kathmandu using image:Kathmandu in Alta Vista will only find pages with images that have Kathmandu in the name of the image.

NOTE: Alta Vista also has an image search engine that will only look for images AND it will display the results as thumbnails (small pictures). Google also had a similar engine that displays thumbnails.