Searching the SAC Database
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Currently, the Southern Asia online collection is composed of five databases: Library
of Congress Serials Collection, Official Indian Publications, Microfilming of Indian
Publications Project, Roja Muthiah Research Library Collection, and the South Asia
Microfilm Project. Each can be searched using the default or Unix Regex searching
mechanism at the bottom of the search page.
The field menu items contain all of the possible fields within each of the databases.
Four of the five current databases possess the same record structure and thus the same
field names with output formatting based on a MARC record structure. Currently, the Library
of Congress Serials database is the exception possessing its own record structure with output
formatting based on its intrinsic record structure. In regard to the Serials database, fields
specific to this database have been marked with an asterisc(*) to the right
of the field
name. Selection of these fields for searching will only work with the Serials database
and will produce no results when these fields are used in conjunction with the other
databases, vice versa. One must choose the
correct field name for the correct
database in order to obtain successful results. If a selected field does
not correspond to the selected database, the following results page occurs:
SAC Search ResultsReturn to Form Generated on: Mon Sep 28 15:53:19 US/Central 1998
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Three types of searches can be performed on the databases, though once a searchtype is
selected, only this searchtype can be used for multiple Query Object searches.
Global Regular Expression Searches
The Global Regex searchtype allows the functionality of string specific searches
throughout the specified field. The Global Regex operators are:
|`_'||matches any single character|
|`%'||matches 0 or more characters of any value (This is the default).
The default operator for any 'Global' search is '%' and is added to the querystring automatically at input. This is also true for the '_' operator.
The default searchtype is is your best bet for individual string
searches within a given field.
Using both Global searchtypes, there is no need to prefix or suffix the '%' or '_' operators
to your Query Object when doing a search. In order to achieve successful searches, do not include
them anywhere in your Query Object!
As an example for using the Global: Match any single character '_xxx'
searchtype, one might look for the following:
Query object: 'alcutta'
Searchtype: Global: Match any single character '_xxx'
This search will find all records whose city field contains one letter followed by 'alcutta'.
Unix Regular Expression Searches
The Unix Regex searchtype provides access to the power of the UNIX standard
regular expression syntax. The UNIX regular expression syntax provides
far greater functionality than the Global syntax. The UNIX regex syntax
does not use the '%' characters in the way the Global searchtype does (as
outlined above). The syntax available for the Unix regex operators are:
|'.'||matches any single character|
|'^'||When used as the first character in a
regex, the caret character forces the match to start at the first
character of the string|
|'$'||When used as the last charactr in a
regex, the dollar sign forces the match to end at the last
character of the string|
|'[ ]'||By enclosing a group of single
characters withing square brackets, the regex will match a single
character from the group of characters. If the ']' character is one of
the characters you wish to match you may specifiy it as the first
character in the group without closing the group (e.g. 'abc]' would
match any single character that was either ']', 'a', 'b', or 'c').
Ranges of characters can be specified within the group using the
'first-last' syntax (e.g. '[a-z0-9]' would match any lower case letter
or a digit). If the first charactr of the group is the '^' character
the regex will match any single character that is not contained
within the group.|
|'*'||If any regex element is followed by a
'*' it will match zero or more instances of the regular