Proximity searching within a paragraph

Aid4Mail provides proximity searching within a paragraph through the ** character wildcard and the <*> word wildcard.

Matching characters within a paragraph

The ** character wildcard will match zero or more characters, including white space characters, as long as the search term is found within a single paragraph. In other words, as long as no new line has been encountered.

For example, searching for jim**sand will find all of these texts:

1. Jim played in the sand.

2. Jimmy was sinking in quicksand.

3. Jim played all day. He had the most fun in the sand.

4. Jimmy didn't read the sign. He was sinking in quicksand.

However it will not find the following as the search term spans more than one paragraph. In other words, one (or more) of the intermediary characters is a new line:

5. Jim played all day at the beach.

   The next day he returned to the sand dunes to search for shells.

Matching words within a paragraph

The <*> word wildcard will match zero or more whole words, rather than individual characters, within a single paragraph. This gives slightly different results. Searching for jim<*>sand will find:

1. Jim played in the sand.

3. Jim played all day. He had the most fun in the sand.

However it will not find:

2. Jimmy was sinking in quicksand.

4. Jimmy didn't read the sign. He was sinking in quicksand.

5. Jim played all day at the beach.

The next day he returned to the sand dunes to search for shells.

Sentences 2 and 4 will not be found because the my at the end of Jimmy, and the quick at the beginning of quicksand, are not whole words and so are not matched by the <*> wildcard. 

Sentence 5 will not be found because the search term spans more than one paragraph.

Matching both characters and words within a paragraph

In order to find sentences 2 and 4 in the examples above using the <*> word wildcard, you could add additional character wildcards to match the partial words. 

For example, the * character wildcard matches zero or more characters within the same word. Adding a * character wildcard at the end of jim would match the my at the end of Jimmy. Adding another * character wildcard before sand would match the quick at the start of quicksand. The <*> word wildcard would continue to match the intermediate words between Jimmy and quicksand. The search term would then become jim*<*>*sand and would  produce identical results to jim**sand, both finding sentences 2 and 4.

Table rows are treated as paragraphs

When searching text in tables, Aid4Mail treats table cells as if they were sentences and rows as paragraphs.



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