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Here are several search tools for locating informative material in all areas of mathematics. Each is reasonably comprehensive in scope (some taking slightly narrower views of what constitutes mathematics) but with increasing depth of coverage; select the ones near the top if your search phrase is fairly general (e.g. "abstract algebra") and the ones near the bottom if your phrase is specific or advanced (e.g. "integral cohomology quaternion group").
[Size of each database wildly guesstimated.]

---Quick orientation: search contents of
[ 41K] [] Layman's Guide to the Subject Areas of Mathematics
(~70 topics -- scan with your browser)
[350K] [] Mathematics Subject Classification
(American Mathematical Society; 4819 classifications)
[800K] [] Index pages at this site
(~100 introductions to mathematics disciplines, plus ~20 navigation pages)
[ 10M] [] Online mathematics dictionary.
(CRC Press; 15,681 index words) [rotating restrictions on use]
[ 12M] [] All files at this site
(1,717 "Selected topics" files, 104 index files, and 30 navigation pages.)
---Mathematics on the Internet: search contents of
[~300M] [] Newsgroups and mailing lists
(Math Forum, Swarthmore; 39 discussion groups since 1991)
(DejaNews; 500,000 mathematics(?) articles since 1995)
[~500M] [] HTML files
(MathSearch at Sydney; 182,117 files)
[~500M] [] (TeX) DVI and PostScript files
(FermiVista at Paris-7; 181,819 files)
---Titles and reviews of published mathematics literature: search records of
[~3G] [] Zentralblatt für Mathematik
(~2M citations since 1931, ~800K reviews since 1985) [limited demo searches]
[~5G] [] Math Reviews
(~2M citations since 1940, ~1.5M reviews since 1970) [subscribers only]
---Source material: search entire contents of
[ ??? ] [] Selected recent journal articles
(Various publishers' search engines)[Paid subscription may be required.]
[~100G] [] All math books, articles, software, microforms, videos, and web sites
(Free, full-text, context-based expert-system natural-language search. 10^(~7) items)

Other types of navigation tools at the Mathematical Atlas:

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Last modified 1999/05/26 by Dave Rusin. Mail: feedback@math-atlas.org