Frequently Asked Questions

Search Terms: in language (English)
search only in original english FAQ (in case of untranslated entries)

Dragon searching
  • Can I search Dragon?
    Yes, there are search pages to search for specific data.
    The most search pages show a table list with all the available data for the specific page (games or users for example). For some search pages there are additional form elements above or below the table list containing filter-elements. Most tables also have filters in the table-header below the column fieldnames.
    Controlling elements for filters are:
    • A filter can be an input box, a selection element, a radio button, a checkbox or a combined input element. Entering or choosing a value for a filter of a column and pressing ENTER or the "Search"-button will restrict the shown table data matching the chosen filter-values while reloading the data.
      On most search pages you can also do the search by using the key-shortcut 'x' (Execute).
    • If you enter an invalid value, the erroneous filter-element is marked with a red border and an error message is shown.
    • The "Reset Search" resets the values in the search form to its default state. Almost all table lists also have a "Show Rows"-button to show less or more rows of data. The default number of rows can be set in your user profile ("Table Max Rows").
    • Most of the filters are always visible. Only some of them, like the country-selection can be hidden to save displaying space when clicking on the 'x'-link ((img)) right beside a filter. A hidden filter can be shown by selecting the '+'-link in the corresponding column.
    • Search terms for fulltext filters are going to be highlighted within some texts for messages, forum posts and contact notes.

    There are different filters specialized for the according column or search page. If the filter-element has an input-box, a hover text shows a short syntax description of the filter, for example:
    Syntax[NUM]: 3, -14, 1-5, 9-

    Syntactical help for filters: The text-part in square-brackets (here 'NUM') can be looked up in the FAQ under the topic "What is the syntax of a NUM-filter?" to get a more detailed description about the syntax for the particular filter.
    There are specific search pages with filter elements for:
  • How can I search the FAQ / Help page?
    There is an input-box for Search Terms on the FAQ / Help page. Enter the words you want to find and press the Search button. The result shows all entries that contain at least one of the words. The found words are marked with a green background in the texts.
    However, you may also show the whole FAQ in one page and use your browser search capabilities to find what you are looking for.
  • How can I search in the waiting room?
    Searching in the games in the waiting room is possible using the filters in the table-head of the table list.
    The default search shows the games, that are suitable to join. That search is built by checking the restrictions of the game offer. Non-suitable games are shown with a red background.
    The links at the page bottom let you switch between showing all games and all games suitable for you. The page title reflects the current selection with "Suitable waiting games" or "All waiting games".
  • How can I search my messages?
    Besides browsing through your messages, there is a search option. You can reach this by going to your Messages page (from the main menu, on the left), and scrolling down to the bottom to find the "Search messages" link.
    In the Search page, the heading ‘Subject’ includes in-body text search. For example, you may have a message with the subject ‘Hello!’ In the main text of that message may be the phrase ‘Yes, the weather is good here’. Entering ‘weather’ in the Subject field would find this message.
  • How can I search for users?
    Go to the users page, on which you also can search for specific users. Be aware, that the default search only shows "active" users, which is reflected in the page title. This can be changed with the checkbox-filter in the Activity-column.
    As additional feature, you can follow the link "Show my opponents" on the page-bottom to only show users you have played with or you currently play. There's also a link "Show opponents" on each user info page, that shows all opponents of that particular user.
    That search page contain more filters above the table, that can place restrictions on the games with your opponents. Following the "Info"-button on a player opens a statistical page about the games between you and the selected opponent.
  • How can I find a certain user?
    Beside of the following two old-way options and browsing, you now can go to the users page and directly search for the users in the filter-elements of the corresponding columns.
    If you know the ID of the user, you can open the following link user ID link template and replace the '1' in 'uid=1' with the ID you know.
    If you know the userid (nickname) of the user, you can open the following link userid link template and replace the 'guest' in 'user=guest' with the userid you know.
    Or you may ask in one of the forums. Maybe someone other knows the player you are looking for.
  • How can I search in my contact list?
    Go to your contact list browsing your contacts directly or using the filter-elements in the table-header fieldnames and the checkboxes below the table to search for specific system and user categories.
  • How can I search games?
    In the respective games list, you can use the filter-elements in the table-headers below the column fieldnames to restrict the list of shown games. Be aware that switching between finished, running and observed games with the links on the page bottom the filter-values are not shared.
  • How can I search the forums?
    Go to the forum search page and enter the terms you are looking for in the form-element "Search terms". For the terms a special search technique is used, that is known as full-text search for the underlying database. The term is only searched in the text elements that are comprised of the Subject and Body of a post message in the forums.
    The found text passages are highlighted (but only for search terms).
    The forum term search uses a special full-text search.
    To find a message written on a certain date, date range or written by a certain user, you have to use the filter-elements "Date" and "Author" respectively.
    With the "Order"-element you are allowed to change the order of the shown posts.
    With the "Number of hits"-element you can specify how many found posts per page are shown. The total number of found posts will be shown in the top bar. At the right side in the top and bottom bar you will find links to navigate to the previous or next page of results.
  • How can I search for the most recent forum entries?
    To search for the most recently created forum entries go to the forum search page and enter how many days back you want to search in the Date-field. Then change the Order to "Creation Date (new first)" and Search for that.
    You can use the select-option "Latest forum posts" from the Dragon bookmarks.
    However, it is not possible to distinguish between new posts (unread) or read posts, but at least you have the candidates to check.
    In case you want to bookmark such a request, you can use the following link: DGS forums recent posts (30d)
  • What is a full-text search?
    You can use that search on the forum search page (Search terms), on the message search page (Subject & implicitly Text) and the contact list page (notes).
    A full-text search is a special search feature of the underlying database (using a full-text index). The behavior of that search may be not very intuitive for the unexperienced, but it's extremely fast and performs much better when compared to a "normal" search. Therefore it has been chosen on Dragon.
    This search uses the full-text index of the subject and text in the body of the forum post messages. You can compare it with the index of a book. Imagine the forum posts (subject and message bodies) to be the content of that book, while searching then is a lookup in its index. An index does not contain every word that appears in the book, but only the most important and more relevant.
    Every word in the index and in the query is weighted according to its significance. A word that is present in many forum posts has a lower weight (maybe even zero). Conversely, if the word is rare, it receives a higher weight. The weights of the words are combined to compute the relevance, which is displayed as Score.
    That has the implication that some words cannot be found with the search. Just as in a book, where words that appear on every page wouldn't make it into the books index. Words omitted from the index are:
    • Words that appears in more than 50% of the forum posts are not listed in the index and cannot be found as well. That may be the most unintuitive condition to be understood when trying to find something. It helps when you remember the book analogy: "not every word is indexed".
    • A static list of words (hard coded in the database), the so-called "stop-words". A full list you can find at:
      If a stop-word is used as search term, an error is shown that must be corrected, e.g. "Warning: Can't search for stopwords [go]!"
    • All words that have less than 4 characters normally can't be found. But the IT-provider of DGS (Samuraj Data) reduced that limitation (applause!), so you can also find "words" consisting of less than 4 chars (in fact also the 1-char words ;-)

    For example, if you search for "my go board is on fire", an equivalent search would be "board fire" (the other words are stop-words).
    Then the database checks how often the word "board" appears in the index (on post subject and post body-text). If it's rare, it receives a higher score. The same is done for "fire". This is done on each post that matches. Then the weights (scores) of the words in the matched posts are combined and all matched posts are sorted according to that score. That makes up the "relevance sort", that is used to display the search result.
    See also Examples and the query-syntax used for a full-text search with or without using expert-mode (boolean-mode).
    And if you are still not satisfied, you can read more technical details about full-text searching at:
  • How can I do a full-text search?
    Before doing a search you should have read what a full-text search is, because there are some restrictions on what can be searched.
    Having the expert-mode (also known as boolean-mode) deactivated, you just enter words you want to search separated by spaces. For example: "teaching game".
    When you use the expert-mode (boolean-mode) the query syntax can be more complex changing the weight of a word within the query:
        word   - an optional word to search for
    +word - the word must be present
    -word - the word shouldn't be present
    >word - the word should have higher relevance
    <word - the word should have less relevance
    ~word - the words relevance is negated
    (...) - can group words and weight-operators
    sub* - search also for words that begin with 'sub', not only full words
    "..." - search for literal string

    Examples for queries (non expert-mode):
       "Where is that damn book about chinese fuseki i saw yesterday"
    the same and better search-query would be: "book chinese fuseki"
    Examples for export-mode queries:
       +tesuji book
    +wooden board shop
    +teaching game
    "teaching game"
    +book +(>tesuji <joseki)
    This search terms find posts that contain the words "book" and "tesuji",
    or "book" and "joseki:" (in any order), but rank "book tesuji"
    higher than "book joseki"
    Best practice using a full-text search:
    This syntax may not get what you want to find. You shouldn't expect to get exactly what you want with the first query. Try to start with fewer but important words, prefixed with '+'. Then continue with reducing the search-result by reducing the weight of some words with '-' prefix.
    For example, you want to search for "Go Seigen, analyzed games":
       seigen analy* game
    -> the "analy*" is used to find "analysis", "analyzed", "analyze"
    The result is not satisfying, so let's reduce it by outruling words
    you don't want to see:
    seig* analy* game -admin
    seig* analy* game -admin -rating
    seig* analy* game -admin -rating -retiring
    With every new (more detailed) query you isolate more the posts you want to find.
  • What is the syntax of a NUM-filter?
    Syntax for this kind of filter allows searching for numerical values (integer or floating point, for example 4711 or 3.14) or a value-range.
    Possible syntaxes in the hover text of a specific filter:
    1. Syntax[NUM]: 314
    2. Syntax[NUM]: 3, -14, 1-5, 9-

    The first syntax only allows exact searches, while the second syntax also allows to search for values that lies in ranges of numeric values. The '-' is used as a special character to indicate a range:
    • -14 = search for values <= 14
    • 9- = search for values >= 9
    • 1-5 = search for values between 1 and 5 (inclusive)

    As '-' is a special character it can't be used to indicate a negative sign. Therefore if ever needed (and that is a rare case), you use single quotes to escape the special meaning. For example: '-3'-9 searches for values between -3 (three negative) and 9.
  • What is the syntax of a TEXT-filter?
    Syntax for this kind of filter allows searching for textual values (for example 'game'). Optional additional syntaxes allows a substring-search, text-ranges or a search for text with wildcards.
    Possible syntaxes in the hover text of a specific filter:
    1. Syntax[TEXT]: foo
    2. Syntax[TEXT]: foo, -bar, baz-, boo-far
    3. Syntax[TEXT]: ... fa*z* ...
    4. Syntax[TEXT]: ... *goo ...
    5. Syntax[TEXT]: [substring] ...

    The first syntax only allows an exact search for a specific text, while the second syntax also allows to search for text values that cover ranges in alpha-numeric order. The '-' is used as a special character to indicate a range:
    • -bar = search for values <= 'bar'
    • baz- = search for values >= 'baz'
    • boo-far, d-f = search for values between 'boo' and 'far', or 'd' and 'f' (inclusive)

    The third and fourth syntax allow to use wildcards to search for a text-value. The '*' represents the special wildcard character.
    • fa*z* = search for texts beginning with 'fa', followed by none or any other characters up to a 'z' and some optional trailing text. The wildcard character can be escaped using single quotes: fa'*'z* or 'fa*z'*
    • *goo, *goo{3} = search for text that begins with an arbitrary text and ends in the text 'goo'. Normally a leading wildcard character is not allowed, because that is an expensive search in terms of server-load. So it is only allowed, if '*goo' appears in the hover-text for a filter-element.
      If the '*goo' is followed by a number in curly braces in the hover-text, then there must be at least that count of non-wildcard characters in the search-text to allow the search to use an optimized search.
    • As '-' and '*' are special characters indicating a range search or wildcard search, they can't be used for the respective characters. You can use single quotes to escape the special meaning.
      For example: 'd-jig' would find exactly that text (not a range). '-a'-'-c' searches for a text range from '-a' up to '-c', 'd*star' or d'*'star would escape the wildcard.
    • The '*'-wildcard has precedence over the '-'-range character, so a '-' used together with a wildcard-character results in the '-' character and not in a range search.

    The fifth syntax allows a search for a substring and is a shortcut to write '*text*' with the fourth syntax.
  • What is the syntax of a RATING-filter?
    Syntax for this kind of filter allows searching for rank values (rating, for example '7k') or a rating-range.
    Possible syntaxes in the hover text of a specific filter:
    1. Syntax[RATING]: 2d, 7k
    2. Syntax[RATING]: 8k (+28%), 8k 28%, 4k (-39%), 4k-39%
    3. Syntax[RATING]: 2d, -7k, 18k-, 28k-1d

    The first and second syntax gives a full rank syntax and a percentaged rank:
    • 2d = 2dan = 2 dan = search for rank '2 dan', i.e. ranks between 2d-50% until 2d+50%
    • 7k = 7kyu = 7 kyu = 7 gup = search for rank '7 kyu'
    • 8k (+28%) = search for rank 8k+28%

    The third syntax only allows to search for values that lies in rating ranges. The '-' is a special character to indicate a range, but need not to be escaped for this filter-element.
    • -7k = search for ranks up to 7 kyu
    • 2d- = search for ranks from 2 dan upwards
    • 28k-1d = search for ranks between 28k and 1d
    • 8k (+28%)-4k (-39%) = search for ranks between 8k+28% and 4k-39%.
      No need to escape the '-'-range-character.
  • What is the syntax of a SCORE-filter?
    This filter is built from two elements: a selection box and an input box. The selection box shows the following choices to be able to search for ('B'=black player, 'W'=white player):
    • All = no restriction on the games score
    • ?+R, B+R, W+R = searches for games won by resignation, the '?' represents both black or white
    • ?+T, B+T, W+T = searches for games won by timeout, the '?' represents both black or white
    • ?+?, B+?, W+? = searches for games won by score, the first '?' represents both black or white.
      For these choices a score value has to be entered in the input box, for example 0.5 (search for exactly 0.5), -3.5 (range search up to 3.5 points) or 0.5-2 (range search between 0.5 and 2 points).
      The syntax of this score value is that of a NUM-filter allowing a range-search.
    • Jigo = search for games, that resulted in jigo
  • What is the syntax of a DATE-filter?
    Syntax for this kind of filter allows searching for absolute date values or a date-range (for example 20070921, 2003, 2001-200404).
    Possible syntaxes in the hover text of a specific filter:
    1. Syntax[DATE]: date=Y(M(D(h(m(s
    2. Syntax[DATE]: date, -date, date-, date1-date2; date=Y(M(D(h(m(s

    A date can be written in a prefixed form omitting the smaller date-parts:
    • YYYY = represents whole year, for example 2007 finds all dates in the year 2007
    • YYYYMM = year and month, for example 200704
    • YYYYMMDD = year + month + day, for example 20070421
    • YYYYMMDD hh = day in year + hours, for example 20070421 17
    • YYYYMMDD hhmm = day in year + hours + minutes, for example 20070421 1751

    The first syntax only allows exact searches, while the second syntax also allows to search for values that lies in ranges of absolute date values. The '-' is used as a special character to indicate a range:
    • -200704 = search for dates up to April 2007
    • 2003- = search for dates since year 2003 forward
    • 200503-20060718 = search for dates between March 2005 and July, 18th of 2006
  • What is the syntax of a RELDATE-filter?
    This filter consists of two elements: an input box and a selection box. The selection box shows the following choices controlling the format for the date value in the input box (dependent on the specific filter; not all of them may be available):
    • absolute: the format of the value in the input box is expected to be that of an absolute date, see DATE-filter
    • years, months, weeks, days, hours, mins: one of these indicate the time-unit used for the relative date in the input box written as (assume 'days' as selected time-unit):
      • 30 or <30 = search date value from 30 days (or selected time-unit) ago until today
      • >30 = search value before 30 days (or selected time-unit) ago
  • What is the syntax of a MATCHINDEX-filter?
    This filter consists of two elements: an input box for entering search terms and a checkbox to select expert-mode (boolean-mode). The checkbox may not always be available. Then the hover-text gives the available syntax. A simple 'word' would indicate an deactivated expert-mode.
    Syntax for this kind of filter is explained in FAQ-entry How can I do a full-text search?.
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