We know you appreciate searching based on citations, so let us provide you with some handy search tips to make use of INSPIRE’s functionality:

With the search term “topcite” you can search by citation count, like papers with a given number of citations or within a range such as “100->500” (just be careful not to include any blank spaces) or you can use another popular  range, “100+”, instead. For example, you can search for publications authored by Bando with 100 to 500 citations using “find a bando and topcite 100->500”  

Using “find c” you can search on the number of citations from papers in INSPIRE to an article, even if the article itself is not part of INSPIRE. To search for all the papers citing a certain Physics Review Letters publication you would use “find c Phys.Rev.Lett.,28,1421”.

The search term “refersto” can be very helpful if you are looking for articles that refer to other sets of articles. If you want papers that reference articles of a particular journal (e.g. Phys.Rev.Lett) you can type “find refersto j Phys.Rev.Lett.”. The same applies to other sets, for example, to search all the articles that reference the ATLAS Collaboration you could use “find refersto cn ATLAS“.

Another interesting term is “citedby”. With citedby, you can find all the publications that were cited by a certain set of articles or by specific authors, e.g. by searching “find citedby a maldacena”, you can find all the publications that Maldacena has cited.

An additional search syntax: How to search with INVENIO

At this point we should mention that INSPIRE also supports an alternative search syntax that you could find more convenient depending on your preferences. You can find all of the examples that were used previously in both search  in the table below.

topcite find a bando and topcite 100->500 author:bando and cited:100->500
find c find c Phys.Rev.Lett.,28,1421 reference:Phys.Rev.Lett.,28,1421
refersto find refersto j Phys.Rev.Let refersto: journal: Phys.Rev.Lett
citedby find citedby a maldacena citedby: author: maldacena


And what about “self-cited”?

In our previous blog post, we explained how to use the self-cite search syntax. It is time to clarify what the self-cited really is so that you can fully understand the potential of self-cited.

Many times authors of scientific papers use their previous publications as a basis for expanding on their research. When an author cites his/her own past publications in a paper, these publications are referred to as “self-cited” in INSPIRE.

Keep in mind that self-citations are gathered only from the papers in our database that have reference lists and they apply to all the (co-)authors involved, citing and cited.

For example, there is this article  written by a 4 researchers and some of the writers decided to make a reference to it in their future publications. So this publication is included in the citations section as self-cited. Keep in mind that if a paper has more than one authors, then self citation is any citing paper written by any of these authors. If you want to remove self-cited from your INSPIRE queries, check our previous post on how you can combine the syntax to obtain the exact results you are looking for.

Let us know what you think in the comments below or send us an e-mail to feedback@inspirehep.net  with your comments and suggestions!

For more helpful tips and information about our features follow INSPIRE’s blog and tweets.

Citation metrics are one of the most used features on INSPIRE. We are always looking for ways to enhance the options to search through citations and references.
We introduced three new search terms you can use to refine your search results and exclude self citations:

Note that ‘M.E.Peskin.1’ is an authorID.

If you have more requests for search syntax that might make your life easier, take a look at our search guide and tips and don’t hesitate to contact us at feedback@inspirehep.net

For more helpful tips and information about our features follow INSPIRE’s blog and tweets.

Have you ever wanted to search by country of author affiliation in INSPIRE? It can be very helpful to filter laboratories or researchers based in a particular location or to extract your own statistics. We have reintroduced the country search capability, following the SPIRES’ syntax, to enable such queries when an author affiliation is present.

Check these examples; the syntax works using both the country name and the Internet country code:

You can, of course, use it as part of more advanced queries. For example, to find how many experimental papers with Chinese contribution were published in 2013:

And finally, as we know you love statistics as much as we do, these are the most common countries in INSPIRE (extracted the 7th Aug 2014):

Ever wanted to search for N=2 SUSY but experienced troubles with the special meaning of the equal sign? You can now type N=2 in the search box and find all papers with N=2in the title or abstract. In SPIRES syntax you’d have to use quotation marks, e.g. find t “N=2”. Omitting the quotation marks in a SPIRES-style search would remove the equal sign as well, giving you papers with N2 in the title. 
In addition, linking to the new pdglive via PDG identifiers like S032:DESIG=1 has been implemented. To make this possible the old spires search variant “field=value”, e.g.”author=dumbledore”, had to be disabled. Since our log files show that this syntax is only used very rarely nowadays this is a small price to pay for these new search options. But if you were using searches like find a witten and date=2012 try find a witten and date 2012 instead.

Telling a computer what to search for is a complicated business. Many of you are used to the SPIRES syntax with all its power and quirks. We’ve worked hard to retain the search syntax you are familiar with as well as allowing for a new Google-style search syntax.

What you might not realize about SPIRES syntax is that is actually the database query language. When you search SPIRES, you are searching the raw data. The language is actually incredibly powerful and only a few people even know all the possibilities it has. But because of that power, there are many ways to search and different people become fond of different ways.

Moreover, a search system must interpret the values you type in your search queries. It would not be reasonable to expect you to type query strings with raw data exactly as it occurs in the database. When you search SPIRES, the search system `massages’ the values you enter, trying to recognize various date formats, or incomplete article numbers, or trying to tell author first names from family names. INSPIRE uses different search technology than SPIRES also in this respect. To reproduce SPIRES search experience in INSPIRE therefore means not only to support SPIRES search syntax per se, but also to perform the SPIRES style of query value massaging, again with all its power and its quirks.

Most individuals, we find, use a small subset of functions of the SPIRES database query language, but different people tend to use different subsets.

That means we had to built in a translator for SPIRES query language into INSPIRE. Unfortunately, that is a daunting task with limited returns at some point. We know that some you use some fairly obscure feature of SPIRES that is rarely used overall and that would be extremely demanding to port to INSPIRE so we might not be able to provide every single search syntax that you use. However, we have scoured our search logs to ensure that a very high fraction of you will be able to use identical syntax as you transition from SPIRES to INSPIRE.

We urge you to try out the new INSPIRE syntax as well as you’ll find it is just as powerful and has extra features because of how the underlying Invenio engine uses the ideas of papers being described by logical fields and their values, as opposed to SPIRES method for handling search.

Take a look at the information about the new kind of search here, or just experiment with it yourself. Please let us know your search experiences, either with the SPIRES or the INSPIRE search methods. Hearing about your search experience will enable us to improve it!