Browse Definitions :
Definition

Boolean operator

Contributor(s): Matthew Haughn

A Boolean operator, in the context of search engines, is a conjunction used to filter results by combining or excluding specific words and terms in queries. Search operators, sometimes referred to as a search parameters, are characters or strings of characters – including words and phrases – that are used in a search engine query to narrow the focus of the search. Boolean operators are a common type.

Boolean operators and how they work:

AND is an operator that gathers only results containing both words typed immediately before and after the operator. Results with either term singularly will not be returned. In Google, the AND operator is implied by a space.

OR is an operator that returns results containing both the word typed both before and after the operator (as with AND) as well as results containing either word individually. The vertical slash - | - represents the same operation in some systems. 

XOR (although, strictly speaking, not a conjunction) is an operator that allows results that contain either the word before the operator or the word typed after the operator but not results including both. XOR stands for exclusive OR.

NOT (AND NOT in some systems) is an operator that gathers results only containing the word typed before the operator and excluding results that include the work following the operator, even if they contain the first desired term. The Google search engine uses the minus sign placed before a word to exclude results containing it.

See also: proximity operator, search string

This was last updated in August 2016

Continue Reading About Boolean operator

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

Powered by:

SearchCompliance

  • compliance audit

    A compliance audit is a comprehensive review of an organization's adherence to regulatory guidelines.

  • regulatory compliance

    Regulatory compliance is an organization's adherence to laws, regulations, guidelines and specifications relevant to its business...

  • Whistleblower Protection Act

    The Whistleblower Protection Act of 1989 is a law that protects federal government employees in the United States from ...

SearchSecurity

  • data breach

    A data breach is a confirmed incident in which sensitive, confidential or otherwise protected data has been accessed and/or ...

  • zero-day (computer)

    A zero-day vulnerability, also known as a computer zero day, is a flaw in software, hardware or firmware that is unknown to the ...

  • Cybercrime

    Cybercrime is any criminal activity that involves a computer, networked device or a network.

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • cloud insurance

    Cloud insurance is any type of financial or data protection obtained by a cloud service provider. 

  • business continuity software

    Business continuity software is an application or suite designed to make business continuity planning/business continuity ...

  • business continuity policy

    Business continuity policy is the set of standards and guidelines an organization enforces to ensure resilience and proper risk ...

SearchStorage

  • business impact analysis (BIA)

    Business impact analysis (BIA) is a systematic process to determine and evaluate the potential effects of an interruption to ...

  • RAID (redundant array of independent disks)

    RAID (redundant array of independent disks) is a way of storing the same data in different places on multiple hard disks to ...

  • dedicated cloud

    A dedicated cloud is a single-tenant cloud infrastructure, which essentially acts as an isolated, single-tenant public cloud.

Close