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Find specific words in sentences (with huge volume)




need your help with find specific words in given sentences.
I have 2 tables:

  1. With ~4000 words.
  2. With ~28,000 sentences.

I want to add a column to the second table with the words that were found.
for example:

I tried to use cursor, but it took too much time (I stopped it after 1 hour).
What is the best way to do it and how?

Thanks in advance.


I would SPLIT the [Sentences] column into one-word-per-row and then JOIN that result to your [Words exist] column

Slight snag may be that a word may not be separated by spaces - e.g. hyphen, comma, etc., so you will have to take care of that.

I suggest you use Jeff Moden's Splitter Function as its probably the most efficient one out there.

yeah, that would be deadly I'm afraid ...

P.S. On tables where we want to do this (typically free-word search on names and Address, and product Descriptions etc.) we maintain a permanent table of split-words (i.e. change that any time the source Description is changed). We also have a dictionary of word-stems and alias words, so that we can "tune" the things that an end user might search for against the actual descriptions.

So for example Mice might be set up as an alias for Mouse - maybe Rat/Rats too? - ditto for plural-alias for Dogs and Cats


This should give you what you're after...

IF OBJECT_ID('tempdb..#Sentense', 'U') IS NOT NULL 
DROP TABLE #Sentense;

CREATE TABLE #Sentense (
	Sentense VARCHAR(1000) NOT NULL,
	WordExist varchar(1000) NULL 
INSERT #Sentense (Sentense) VALUES
	('This is a dog'),
	('I saw a cat and a dog'),
	('I love mouse and dogs'),
	('I love you'),
	('I like bananna'),
	('Cats and dogs living together');

IF OBJECT_ID('tempdb..#Word', 'U') IS NOT NULL 

	('dog'), ('cat'), ('mouse');


	s.WordExist = STUFF(we.WordExist, 1, 2, '')
	#Sentense s
				CONCAT(', ', w.Word)
				#Word w
				s.Sentense LIKE '%' + w.Word + '%'
			) we (WordExist);

SELECT * FROM #Sentense s;


	, ('Category dogma')

? :slight_smile:


Looks at the OP test data... "dogs" = "dog"...
Tells me that they want a "contains" match...


Hehehe ... yeah, I'm used to a decent spec too ... but in here I take a much broader assumption ....

Root-words much harder of course ... even "exact words" is reasonably hard, assuming that the delimiter cannot be guaranteed to be a space, or a set of easily handled characters.

But there again the underlying question might be actually about proprietary part numbers, or somesuch, which are inherently unique and won't give any false positives ...


I've been asked to do this sot of thing before and it's been my experience that those making the request don't tend to think through the ramifications of what they're asking for. In the end, depending on what's needed, this type of solution can be as simple as what I posted above to insanely complex "fuzzy logic" matching.
Until the OP comes back with some clarification, we really don't know, and I'm not going to waste my time coding a complex solution based on a , possible incorrect, hunch.


You and me both :slight_smile:

have emoji changed I wonder? I went looking for one, found loads of new ones (or so it seems to me) ... a Thumbs Up would have been nice to use ... but amongst the hundreds ... didn't find one of those at all.


No idea... I'm still relatively new to this forum.


Wow ! @Jason_A_Long, it's super helpful ! thank you very much ! it runs 4.5 minutes and gives me exactly what I need.
You rock !



Thank you all for your answers !



Hi Jason,

Thanks a lot for the solution.
it's work great on production (~4:30 minutes) .

just to emphasize your solution, i stopped the cursor after one hour on production.

well done.



I have to ask, how big are the sentences in bytes? For example, are they all <= 8000 bytes each? Also, what is the data-type of the column the sentences are in?