Section 5 Web Myths > URLs > Search Engines > Special Directories > Exercise > Precision Searching Strategies > Exercise

Subject Directories

Another way to search the Web is by using a directory. A subject directory is a collection of Web sites selected and organized by humans, not spiders. Directories are often called subject trees or hierarchies because they start with a few broad subject categories (see above) and then divide into increasingly more specific sub-categories. So, for example, if you are searching for information on drug treatments for AIDS, you will proceed through the following progressively narrower list of options.

  Diseases and Conditions
    Sexually transmitted diseases
        Research and Treatment
          Drug Treatment and Therapies

Many directories also provide a keyword search option for searching the Web if a search of the directory is disappointing. Yahoo, which can be accessed at, is the best known of the commercial subject directories.

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