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Glossary » search engine

search engine

a tool that allows a person to enter a word or phrase and then lists web pages or items in a database that contain that phrase. The success of such a search depends on a variety of factors including: the number of websites that are searchable (or scope of the database), the syntax that a user enters a query in, and the algorithm for determining the “relevance” of a result, which is some measure of how well a given page matches the query. A typical problem is a user retrieving too few or too many results and having difficulty broadening or narrowing the query appropriately.