The best way to search effectively and efficiently

precision and recall explained

Searching whether on Google or on Gear Lama - it is always a good idea to go from a specific search to a generic search. This means you start with the most specific search to find the exact hit. If that doesn't work, you keep on expanding the size of the search results till you find the result that you desire.

A specific to generic search pattern is a great way to save time as you're likely to browse less results to find what you like.

Lets say as an example we want to search and look for a bike light. Bike Light - as in those light emitting devices that light up the road and make you visible on the road 😇. Here are three ways in which you can query this on Gear Lama, from the most specific way down to the most generic:

  1.  "Bike Light" - Using quotes means Gear Lama will search for the phrase "bike light". A phrase means that the words have to be in this specific order and with just one space between then. This is the most constrictive searches and will often yield the least amount but the most specific results.

    Only 147 results - least amount of results
  2. Bike Light - All Gear Lama searches use an AND by default so this is the same as writing Bike AND Light. Without the quotes Gear Lama will search for all products that contain the words Bike AND Light. So even if a bike description has the text "this bike is light" will qualify because it contains the words "bike" and the word "light". This will yield more results than approach 1 but not as many as approach 3.
    1199 results
    1199 results - Bike Light & Bike AND Light yield the same results as Gear lama automatically ANDs all terms
  3. Bike OR Light  adding the "OR" means Gear Lama will look for products that contains either of these words. All products that contain the words "Bike" Or "Light" will qualify.  This will return the most amount of results but least specific results.
7606 results - the highest amount of results

As a data scientist it is hard for me to avoid the use of words precision and recall in this post. But, I'm doing it to avoid being too technical in a post that's meant for everyday users, not scientists. You can replace "specific" with "precision" and "number of results" with "recall". Precision vs Recall  on Wikipedia.

Happy Searching!