This is a follow-up to this question Would an "around" search token make any sense?
If someone is performing a search by date would having an "around" this date feature be useful, and if so, how you would interpret their input. For example what date range would you include in the results if someone specified "around march" as their date query.
The answers so far from @sacohe and @PatomaS have been perfectly sensible, but not quite what I'm looking for, so let me constrain the problem a bit more.
Imagine the dates are mentioned in a witness report for some criminal incident. The report says "It happened around March". The witness the statement was taken from is no longer available, for reasons which I'll let people's fertile imaginations come up with!
Now, we want an algorithm to correlate that "date phrase" with other data in a database of incidents which have known dates. How do we convert that search date into a something we can use in a concrete query. Of course, you may find no matches and have to widen the search, but what would be your best interpretation for your first attempt?
Would you handle the phrases "around 12th March", "around March", "before Christmas" (or other religious/cultural holiday of your choosing) differently? Would the width of the date range be different for each?