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  1. #1
    Star Lounger
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    Search terms in a Table (2003)

    I'm creating a table with a few hundred quotes and want to be able to search for each quote using any one of multiple search terms (subjects).

    Following the advice I got from this list, I was planning on having three columns for the table -- one for subjects, one for the quotes, and one for the source.

    For example:

    George H.W. Bush made "balance" on environmental issues a fighting point in his 1992 campaign against Clinton. (Cannon and Riehl, 2004, 195, Stanford Env. Law Jrnl, 221)

    I should be able to find this quote by searching for

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Search terms in a Table (2003)

    You could enter the search terms in one column, separated by commas, or by paragraph marks (the result of pressing Enter).

  3. #3
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    Re: Search terms in a Table (2003)

    Thanks, but I'm not sure what to do to find all quotes having "Bush" as a subject once I have this set up as you suggested. I tried using the sort command, but that just alphabetized the quotes based on the first entry in each comma-separated column. I must be missing something.

  4. #4
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Search terms in a Table (2003)

    You can use Edit | Find and click Find Next to find the occurrences of the search text.

    If you really want a system that you can sort, filter etc., you might consider creating a database in Microsoft Access, if you have Office Professional. Setting up a database is more work, but the result will be much more flexible and powerful than a Word document.

    Or, despite my earlier recommendation in another thread, you could use Excel. Excel has several sorting and filtering methods - not as powerful as Access, but also easier to set up.

  5. #5
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    Re: Search terms in a Table (2003)

    Ah, that makes sense. I may have to get Access, or try working with Excel, because I do want to group quotes (sort/filter), not just search for the subject term. I found other programs specifically for this (Library Master), but they're expensive -- and maybe not as adaptable as Access. Thanks for your help!

  6. #6
    5 Star Lounger st3333ve's Avatar
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    Re: Search terms in a Table (2003)

    I like working with Access, but that's at least partly because I enjoy programming like some people enjoy doing crossword puzzles. It's easy to imagine a non-programmer who just wants to "get the job done" finding Access both much less user-friendly than expected and an outrageous time sinkhole. Since it sounds like you're pretty much unfamiliar with Access, I thought that was worth mentioning. And you should view my caution as especially applicable if you think your current "application" may be the only thing you ever use Access for, since you'd be spending all the learning-curve time for just the one project.

    You mention that there's existing software that's pretty much set up to do exactly what you want, but it's expensive. Two comments: (1) I strongly suspect there are inexpensive programs that would also work well for you if the data structure you're going to be dealing with is as simple as you've described (you might try posting in the Software Finds & Wants forum), and (2) following up on my first paragraph, don't undervalue the time you'll save by not having to learn your way around Access.

    If you do end up deciding to use Access, I'd recommend that you begin by doing a follow-up post in the Access forum that mentions that you're a complete newbie and describes your data structure (which may or may not be as simple as what you've already described here) and the kind of sorting/filtering/etc. that you'd anticipate wanting to do with the data, and asks for some getting-started advice on how many tables to create and how the tables should be related to each other.

    As a final note, if you do a post in the Software Finds & Wants forum, you might want to include a question as to whether OneNote (a relatively inexpensive Microsoft program that comes with some newer versions of Office) might suit your needs. I'm not familiar with OneNote myself, but my very vague concept of it leads me to think it might work for you.

    And one post-final note: I'm not an Excel user, so nothing in this post should be construed to imply that Excel wouldn't work well for you.

  7. #7
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Search terms in a Table (2003)

    I agree, excellent points.

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