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I've tried using the - (not) symbol in searches on StackOverflow to reduce the number of irrelevant matches in the results, with no effect.

I'm getting really sick of "Whats your favorite programmer joke / cartoon?" appearing in the results for almost every search I perform.

I've read this page and there is no mention of how to use a Not operator to exclude the following word.

I've heard about excluding tags using -, but I'm talking about excluding words.

Is this possible? Has it just not been implemented? If not, I'd really like to see this added to search.

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1  
Arbitrary logical expressions is the more general question. – blueberryfields Nov 27 '10 at 20:34

This was added a while back - you can now use the - operator to exclude search terms: http://stackoverflow.com/search?q=what%27s+your+favorite+programmer+-cartoon

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Yes, Google is always a good backup. I've developed a few searches in my time and usually found implementing the NOT operator pretty easy. Strange it isn't already available. – user135186 Sep 1 '09 at 3:03
    
The link in Shog9's answer does not use the site: operator. You might consider using something like site:stackoverflow.com to constrain your Google search to Stackoverflow. – chb Jul 30 '12 at 19:27
    
@chb: thanks for the heads-up: this was actually implemented a while ago. – Shog9 Jul 30 '12 at 19:33
    
@Shog9 facepalm I had no idea; should've looked at the post date and tried again. – chb Jul 30 '12 at 19:41
    
Your search tips, like the steak ones at Tumbleweeds, are out of date then – random Jul 30 '12 at 20:37

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