WorldWideScience.org is a collaborated effort that allow scientists to do search on national and international databases. It was developed by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Scientific and Technical Information in partnership with the British Library and other sources.
Pretty cool effort, considering they have to deal with various databases with different metadata, database structure, and search syntax.
I tried it out by using my usual dorky word search, “java”, because I always curious how a system would distinguish it between java programming language, java island, javanese people, java language (yes, the language of javanese), and, of course, java coffee.
Well, not much happening on the search result. You will get a list of results supposedly based on a relevancy and no clear categorization. However, I suppose the scientists will probably use more specific search terms and can expect to get a more precise results.
Using wildcard (*) works, as well as boolean search.