PubMed will soon include a new relevance sort option. The “Relevance” sort option will be available from the “Display Settings” menu under the “Sort by” selections. The update to the new sort by selection will be combined with a new feature that retains the most recent “sort by” selection for subsequent search results until a different sort order is selected, or after eight hours of inactivity on the system.
Results for My NCBI users that are signed in with a modified default sort order will continue to display in the modified order until a different sort order is selected. A Relevance default sort selection in My NCBI PubMed Preferences will be added after the initial implementation of this new feature.
The relevance sort order for search results is based on an algorithm that analyzes each PubMed citation that includes the search terms. For each search query, “weight” is calculated for citations depending on how many search terms are found and in which fields they are found. In addition, recently-published articles are given a somewhat higher weight for sorting.
Follow this link to view screenshots of the upcoming feature: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/pubs/techbull/so13/so13_pm_relevance.html