This feature allows returning the positions of matches of a query inside the indexed text. This is done by creating a virtual column which gets as its value an array of arrays, one array for each top level term of the text query expression. The component arrays in turn contain word positions, expressed as the ordinal number of the first and last word of each match of the term in question. The ordinal numbers are counted from 0, skipping noise words.

Example 20.2. Word Ranges

select dbg_obj_print (r), * from ftt
        where contains (dt, 'foo', ranges, r);

Prints the array

(L(0 0 ) )

to the server standard output, indicating that the match starts and ends at the 0'th word, inclusive.

This feature can be used to show specific portions of matching documents in applications. This is internally used as part of the xcontains predicate for XML text. Also see the function search_excerpt ().