The “AND,” “NOT” and “OR” operators are normally applied to grouping theory and algebra. By using the operators in the correct manner, you can isolate single or small groups of items in a relatively quick manner. In terms of Internet searches, the database you have to work with has millions of entries that examine topics in a variety of subject areas, so this can be especially valuable.
To use the Boolean operators, you must begin by defining your general subject by performing a general search on the database for everything that concerns your topic. To maximize your efforts, you can then use the Boolean operators to exclude all the types of information that you aren’t interested in. By excluding the areas and minor topics from the general responses, you will decrease the number of entries that will have to be examined one-by-one.
A good way to understand the Boolean process and learn how to apply Boolean logic is to look at a few examples. The process of using Boolean logic begins in a general manner and then you narrow the results, much like the child’s game of 20 Questions. Here's the process:
Define the information that you seek. Assume, for example, you are interested in finding information on the mating habits of African elephants. You would begin your search of the database by searching “elephants.” This will yield a large number of entries (set 1.)