Keyword Searching in the Browser

Published: 24 November 2014
The BrowserExternal link image searching tool has a powerful keyword search box.

It is fundamentally, the same as the keyword searchExternal link on the main searchExternal link, and supports most of the same syntax.

This article attempts to document the difference.

Note, the 'Browser index' is also used by the simplified 'Photos of'External link interface, the Groups By testerExternal link, and the coverage layerExternal link. (and a few other experimental tools)

Missing features


~ operator does not work in the browser
[...] tag syntax is only partly supported, not recommended to use, use tags:bridge instead
Field Start/End modifiers, don't work on Tags/Contexts etc (any field name ending in 's')


Field Searches


The browser index has its own list of available search fields.

Can use 'field syntax' to limit keywords to a specific field. If specify field name followed by colon, ALL keys after that (or until another specifier!), will only match specific field.

eg [ bridge title: canal liverpool] will look for 'bridge' in ANY field. But 'canal' and 'liverpool' needs to be in the image title.

This is a full reference list: (some are intended for internal use, so not easy to use)

... also many of these fields are specifically to power the 'attribute sidebars'. So filtering by say "format" might be easier using the sidebar filters, but for all other fields can use the keywords box, and these names:-
title:The main image titletitle:bridge
desc:The description text (note, does NOT include shared descriptions)desc:the
name:The full photographer/contributor namename:John Smith
day:The day the photo was taken, format YYYYMMDDday:20120523
month:The month and year the photo was taken, format YYYYMM month:201204
year:The year the photo was taken, format YYYY year:2001
decade:The decade the photo was taken, format 2010s (always ends in 0s)decade:1990s
monthname:The month the photo was taken, format April (the full english month name) monthname:September
myriad:The 100km square the image was taken in, as jsut the gridletter(s)myriad:NT
hectad:The 10km square the image was taken in, as 2 figure grid referencehectad:SH55
gridref:The 1km square the image was taken in, as 3 figure grid referencegridref:TQ7040
category:The legacy image categoryExternal linkcategory:ford
subject:The selected Primary Photo SubjectExternal linksubject:fungi
contexts:The top level Geographical Context(s)External linkcontexts:roads
buckets:The selected bucket(s)External link the image has been added tobuckets:aerial
tags:All other tagsExternal link (not context, subject or buckets)
note, if wanting to search by tag prefix, dont enter the :, eg to search the tag [ river:Arthog ], you need to enter tags: "river Arthog"
tags:river
snippets:The titles of the shared descriptions on the imagesnippets:christmas
wikis:The assigned wikimedia category for the image (few images have this)wikis:bridge
terms:Important Terms extracted by computer from descriptionterms:canal
groups:Automatically cluster labelsgroups:battle
status:geograph OR supplemental status:geograph
types:image type tag (geograph, supplemental, cross grid, close look, extra, aerial, inside) (unknown type are 'supplemental') types:extra
distance:The distance between subject and photographer in metres, rounded to powers of two (eg 1,4, 16, 4096)distance:1024
direction:the view direction as decimal degrees from north 0-360 - or 'unknown'direction:180
format:square,portrait,landscape,panoramaformat:portrait
landcover:Estimated landcover of the general area of the photolandcover:woodland
place:nearest placenameplace:Birmingham
county:county of the nearby placename (if known)country:Essex
country:The full country namecountry:Ireland
larger:has a larger upload. (eg "larger:800" means has at least a 800px version, also 1024, 1600 and 3000 available)larger:1024
user:the user-id of the user who uploaded the imageuser:96
text:This is a special field, that searches the title, description, subject, category and "other" tags (eg NOT the shared descriptions, nor the context/type tags)text:mushroom


The browser and the main search, have very different fields. It has a number of fields that the main search does not.
Creative Commons Licence [Some Rights Reserved]   Text © Copyright November 2014, Barry Hunter; licensed for reuse under a Creative Commons Licence.
With contributions by Penny Mayes. (details)
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