Searching Tips & Tricks
Should I Search or Should I Go?
Here is what happens if you try to find "art" on meritbadge.org:
- ART goes directly to Art Merit Badge but does not give you search results for the Cub Scout Art Belt Loop or Webelos Artist.
- ART says that meritbadge.org does not have the word "ART" on any page!
- To the Wikipedia Search, "ART" is not the same word as "Art", "art", "ARt", etc.
- Google Search meritbadge.org for "ART" to find Art, Cub Scout Art Belt Loop, Webelos Artist, and dozens of of other pages.
- The Google Search for "ART", "Art", "art", "ARt", etc. will find any page with of those capitalizations as well as Artist.
Expand or narrow your search
- Use the asterisk "*" wildcard to expand your search. "*" also removes many of the case match problems!
- Put phrases in "quotes" to narrow your search.
- Family Life finds Family Life but also any page with the words "Family" or "Life"
- "Family Life" finds only pages with the phrase "Family Life"
- Geneology says that meritbadge.org does not have a page on this merit badge.
- Geneology also says that meritbadge.org does not have a page on this merit badge.
- Google Search meritbadge.org for "Geneology" asks, Did you mean: Genealogy
- Click Genealogy to go to that page or dozens of others that reference "Genealogy".
How Search works
- Only the text on the page is searched - the page title is ignored.
- The article content is searched in its raw (wikitext) form - i.e. it searches the text that appears in the edit box when you click 'edit', not the rendered page. This means that content coming from an included template will not be picked up, but the target of piped links will be.
- Even if you enclose a phrase in quotes, the search looks for each word individually. e.g. if you enter "world war 2" it will return pages that contain "world" and "war" and "2".
- The search is not case-sensitive, so "MediaWiki", "mediawiki" and "MEDIAWIKI" all give the same result.
Restricting (or broadening) the search
- NOTE (and this is important): By default, only the namespaces specified in the "search" tab of your preferences will be searched. Logged-in users can change (and save) their preferences to specify the namespaces they want to search by default.
- You can also refer to help for setting your preferences.
- Or, if you just want to specify different namespaces for a single search then you can do so on the search results page.