FirstSearch offers access to over 40 electronic bibliographic and full-text databases.
- Log in to the Library Services Menu by typing CONNECT LIBRARY R at the VAX LOCAL> prompt.
- Select the FirstSearch Databases by typing D.
- All information seen on the screen during your FirstSearch session is recorded to a file in your main VAX account. The name of this file will be FIRSTSEARCH.LOG.
Select a database, then consult the FirstSearch documentation for the searchable fields and searching tips.
- Check the Wordlist to verify that a word is in the database, for the correct spelling of a word, and to determine the number of records containing a word. All single words are indexed.
- If necessary, type S and press R to reach the SEARCH WORD(S) prompt.
- Type a word or phrase at the SEARCH WORD(S) prompt.
You may combine the search terms on one line using the Boolean operators AND, OR, or NOT. Terms connected with the operators and entered on a single line count as one search.
FirstSearch has a limited ability to truncate. Use the + key at the end of a word to search simultaneously for singular and plural forms of that word. This technique only works for simple "s" and "es" endings.
Example:institute+ will retrieve records with the term institute or institutes
To narrow your search, you can set limits for language, year, or document type before searching. The limit need only be set once and will be applied to each subsequent search if desired.
Type L and press R to select the limits screen.
- Type the number of the limit and follow the on-screen directions to designate parameters.
- Scan the short titles, noting the record numbers.
- Type a record number and press R to view a record.
- Press F or B to move forward or backward through the record.
You can email the results of a search to yourself from the List of Records screens.
Type E 1-3,5,7 (for example), specifying up to 5 records to be emailed at a time.
Type your Internet address, as shown, and press R .
DO NOT USE the MX% around your address.
- Records can be printed at a microcomputer with an attached printer by using the print screen button (or)
- Up to five records can be printed/downloaded at a time to the FIRSTSEARCH.LOG file in your VAX account. (This option only works when connecting via the Library Services Menu.)
- Type P FULL RECORD NUMBERS R
- (Ex. P FULL 1-3,5,8 R ).
- Type Y when asked if communications software is ready.
- Type FULL 10-13,16,19 (for example) to print the next block of five records. Repeat this process until all records have been printed.
Press R to return to the text display.
Type BYE R.
Save the FIRSTSEARCH.LOG file with a new name. Every time you search via the Library Menu a new FIRSTSEARCH.LOG file is created. To avoid losing previous searches, rename the file at the VAX $ prompt by typing:
- RENAME FIRSTSEARCH.LOG NEWFILENAME.DOC
- where NEWFILENAME.DOC is a name that describes the search.
- Use the WordPerfect or VAX Editor (KEDT) to edit your file. When using WordPerfect, place your cursor at the top of the file, then change the font to Courier 10 point and the left and right margins to .5". This will align the text evenly with the margins.
Delete all extraneous material, leaving only the downloaded records that were displayed as a result of the Print command.