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Two questions on search criteria


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#1 Ben

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Posted 15 March 2007 - 11:01 PM

Hi everyone,

I'm just starting to use search criteria a little more seriously and I have a couple of questions.

First, can someone explain to me how the @ symbol works and what it's used for? The Help doesn't give me an explanation I can understand. I suspect it's to do with attaching a search command to words rather than verses, but I'm not sure. I've used it to search thus: *@[COUNT 25-100000] to find all Gk words appearing more than 25 times in the GNT, but I can't do *@[RANGE John] for example.

Second, why doesn't this search work: *@[COUNT 25-100000] <AND> [RANGE John]? It returns every word that appears over 25 times in the entire range as specified under 'More options' rather than just in John.

Thanks.

#2 Helen Brown

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Posted 15 March 2007 - 11:44 PM

You are correct that the @ symbol joins criteria that you want to appear on a single word. You don't need *@[COUNT 25-100000], you can just use [COUNT 25-100000], but if you wanted the common nouns you would use [NOUN]@[COUNT 25-100000], or to specify a word beginning with a particular letter, or incluidng a particular root, etc., etc.

You are also correct that the RANGE command gives different results with COUNT than the pop-up menu range does (it also produces graphs that cover the entire range). This slight difference in function lets you find, for example, nouns that are common in the entire GNT but to find them only in John. Or you can find the true hapax legomena, only in John. If you use [COUNT 1] <AND> [RANGE John] you find the words that occur only once in John, but may not be true hapax legomena.

In all other instances there is no difference in the results produced by the two types of ranges.
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#3 jpkang

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Posted 15 March 2007 - 11:57 PM

First, can someone explain to me how the @ symbol works and what it's used for? The Help doesn't give me an explanation I can understand. I suspect it's to do with attaching a search command to words rather than verses, but I'm not sure. I've used it to search thus: *@[COUNT 25-100000] to find all Gk words appearing more than 25 times in the GNT, but I can't do *@[RANGE John] for example.

I think of the @ symbol primarily as associating (or "gluing") grammatical tags to words, to help constrain or define searches. I believe the only two commands that can be attached to words are [COUNT] and [HITS] (see the Help for how the latter works).

Second, why doesn't this search work: *@[COUNT 25-100000] <AND> [RANGE John]? It returns every word that appears over 25 times in the entire range as specified under 'More options' rather than just in John.

It is working--it's just that the results are not what you're expecting. If you want only words appearing 25 times or more in John, you need to create a custom range for the gospel of John. With such a range selected, you could then use the RANGE command to show frequently occurring Johannine vocabulary (or to use the other end of the spectrum, hapax) within a specific chapter or pericope.

Note that if RANGE were to take precedence over the range defined by the popup menu, it could lead to a visually confusing display. Imagine the latter being set to "Old Testament" and [RANGE Romans] being allowed in the search box--it would look odd, to say the least.

Predefined ranges are handy not just when you're doing a close book study (as you are) but also for testing out a hypothesis on a given set of texts/books and you don't want to have to keep typing that set of often noncontinuous texts as a [RANGE].

Finally, using predefined ranges instead of [RANGE] can be helpful when you want to see more detail in the reports that you get when you click the Details button after a search, since the predefined range is what determines which books appear in the analyses.

Hope that helps!
J. P. Kang, Ph.D. (Bible)

#4 Ben

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Posted 16 March 2007 - 01:21 AM

Thanks for the replies, Helen and JP.

Thanks also for informing my (mis)use of the * and @ tags. I think I get that now.

I'm still stumped on the RANGE command. I understood it to just be an alternative to defining a set range, a temporary way of doing the same thing. I realise that's not right, and I appreciate you pointing out that the Graph will have a different range based on that. But I'm still not clear on the function of the command.

In terms of a hapax, wouldn't [COUNT 1] with a defined range of John and [COUNT 1] <AND> [RANGE John] return the same results?

Note that if RANGE were to take precedence over the range defined by the popup menu, it could lead to a visually confusing display. Imagine the latter being set to "Old Testament" and [RANGE Romans] being allowed in the search box--it would look odd, to say the least.

I would have thought that in this instance, you would just get a normal popup informing you that no verses/words occur in the range, since they preclude one another.

#5 Helen Brown

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Posted 16 March 2007 - 02:31 AM

You are correct that the RANGE command is intended as a quick and temporary way to define a range, and it gives the same results as the range in the pop-up menu except for these two instances.

First, if you use RANGE Accordance assumes that the pop-up menu is set to All Text which avoids any conflicts.

The COUNT command looks at the count of words within the range of the pop-up menu, so if you use [COUNT 1] <AND> [RANGE John] it finds words which occur once in the entire GNT, but displays them only in John. If the pop-up menu is set to John it finds words which occur once in John, even if they also occur elsewhere. I do not know how to explain this more clearly.
Helen Brown
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#6 Ben

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Posted 16 March 2007 - 02:57 AM

Thanks, Helen. That makes sense.




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