Google Search Things you know and things you don’t. By: Jiwanjot Singh
Google Search OK, do you know how to search on google.com? The But obvious answer to this question is YES. This presentation is not going to teach you how to search on Google, however, we will talk about how to make that search fruitful and quick. Please Note that the examples given in this presentation are included in Brackets [ ], please do not include [ ] while searching on Google using the examples in this presentation.
Very Basics Google search is simple: just type whatever comes to mind in the search box, hit Enter or click on the Google Search button, and Google will search the web for pages that are relevant to your query
Some basic facts Every word matters. Generally, all the words you put in the query will be used. There are some exceptions. Search is always case insensitive. Searching for [ new york times ] is the same as searching for [ New York Times ]. With some exceptions, punctuation is ignored (that is, you can't search for @#$%^&*()=+ and other special characters).
Exceptions to 'Every word matters' Words that are commonly used, like 'the,' 'a,' and 'for,' are usually ignored (these are called stop words). Synonyms might replace some words in your original query. (Adding + before a word disables synonyms.) A particular word might not appear on a page in your results if there is sufficient other evidence that the page is relevant. The evidence might come from language analysis that Google do.
Punctuation that is not ignored Punctuation in popular terms that have particular meanings [ C++ ] or [ C# ] (both are names of programming languages), are not ignored. The dollar sign ($) is used to indicate prices. [ Nikon 400 ] and [ Nikon $400 ] will give different results. The hyphen - is sometimes used as a signal that the two words around it are very strongly connected. (Unless there is no space after the - and a space before it, in which case it is a negative sign.) The underscore symbol _ is not ignored when it connects two words, e.g. [ quick_sort ].
Guidelines for better search Keep it simple Think how the page you are looking for will be written Describe what you need with as few terms as possible Choose descriptive words
Keep it simple If you're looking for a particular company, just enter its name, or as much of its name as you can recall. If you're looking for a particular concept, place, or product, start with its name. If you're looking for a pizza restaurant, just enter pizza and the name of your town or your zip code. Most queries do not require advanced operators or unusual syntax. Simple is good
Think how the page you are looking for will be written A search engine is not a human, it is a program that matches the words you give to pages on the web. Use the words that are most likely to appear on the page. For example, instead of searching [ my head hurts ], search [ headache ], because that's the term a medical page will use. The query [ in what country are bats considered an omen of good luck? ] is very clear to a human, but the document that gives the answer may not have those words. Instead, use the query [ bats are considered good luck in ] or even just [ bats good luck ]
Describe what you need with as few terms as possible The goal of each word in a query is to focus it further. Since all words are used, each additional word limits the results. If you limit too much, you will miss a lot of useful information. The main advantage to starting with fewer keywords is that, if you don't get what you need, the results will likely give you a good indication of what additional words are needed to refine your results on the next search.
Choose descriptive words The more unique the word is the more likely you are to get relevant results. Words that are not very descriptive, like 'document,' 'website,' 'company,' or 'info,' are usually not needed. Keep in mind, however, that even if the word has the correct meaning but it is not the one most people use, it may not match the pages you need. For example, [ celebrity ringtones ] is more descriptive and specific than [ celebrity sounds ].
How to read search results (2) The title: The first line of any search result is the title of the webpage. The snippet: A description of or an excerpt from the webpage. The URL: The webpage's address. Cached link: A link to an earlier version of this page. Click here if the page you wanted isn't available.
Anatomy of a Web Address (1) If you already know how to read a web address or URL, skip this section. Otherwise, consider the web address http://www.googleguide.com/searchEngines/google/searchLeader.html.
Anatomy of a Web Address (2) http://www.googleguide.com/searchEngines/google/searchLeader.html
Refining a Query Refining a query means changing or adding to the set of search terms to do a better job of returning the pages you’re seeking. Successful researchers frequently enter several queries to find what they’re seeking
Refining a Query: Example (1) Lets take a example: lets say we are searching for “Vacation spots”. Step 1: Type in Google search bar and hint enter: Vacation spots Many of the results will refer to world wide vacations spots Step 3: Refine the search by location, search for: Vacation spots + India
Refining a Query: Example (2) Exploit successful queries: look deeper within your results using “search within results” option at the bottom of your Google search results. Type winter in the search box in the bottom of search results and click on “search within results” button. This will further eliminate al vacations spots which are not for winters
Google search: Advance techniques Now, lets begin with some advance techniques that you can use to refine your Google search These techniques help in getting more focused results and its fun.
using Special Characters Quoted Phrases The + Character The – Character The ~ Character The OR and | Character The .. Character The * Character
Quoted Phrases To search for a phrase, a proper name, or a set of words in a specific order, put them in double quotes For example, [ “Larry Page“ ] finds pages containing the phrase/name “Larry Page” exactly not “Larry has a home page”.
The + Character (1) The + operator is typically used in front of stop words that Google would otherwise ignore or when you want Google to return only those pages that match your search terms exactly. Note that you should not put a space between the + and the word. So, to search for the satirical newspaper The Onion, use [ +The Onion ], not [ + The Onion ].
The + Character (2) Disable automatic stemming Searching for pages that match variants of your search term(s), by preceding each term that you want to be matched exactly with the + operator. For example, if you want to see only pages mentioning one favorite book rather than lists of favorite books, Google will search for “favourite” and “favorite” too. To prevent this, precede the word “favorite” and “book” by a + sign. [ +favorite +book ]
The - Character Precede each term you do not want to appear in any result with a “–” sign. Find pages on “salsa” but not the dance nor dance classes. USE [ salsa –dance –class ] NOT [ salsa ]
The ~ Character Find synonyms by preceding the term with a ~, which is known as the tilde or synonym operator. In math, the “~” symbol means “is similar to.” The tilde tells Google to search for pages that are synonyms or similar to the term that follows. [ ~inexpensive ] matches “inexpensive,” “cheap,” “affordable,” and “low cost” [ ~run ] matches “run,” “runner’s,” “running,” as well as “marathon”
The OR and | Character Specify synonyms or alternative forms with an uppercase OR or | (vertical bar). The 2 examples below will find pages that include either “Tahiti” or “Hawaii” or both terms, but not pages that contain neither “Tahiti” nor “Hawaii.” [ Tahiti OR Hawaii ] [ Tahiti | Hawaii ]
The .. Character Specify that results contain numbers in a range by specifying two numbers, separated by two periods, with no spaces. For example, specify that you are searching in the price range $250 to $1000 using the number range specification $250..$1000. [ recumbent bicycle $250..$1000 ]
The * Character Use *, an asterisk character, known as a wildcard, to match one or more words in a phrase (enclosed in quotes). For example, [ “Google * my life” ] tells Google to find pages containing a phrase that starts with “Google” followed by one or more words, followed by “my life.” Phrases that fit the search include: “Google changed my life,” “Google runs my life,” or “Google is my life.”
Google as Calculator Want to add up a list of numbers, convert from miles to kilometers, or evaluate some other mathematical expression? You can solve mathematical problems with Google’s built-in calculator function.
Search Operators These are query words that have special meaning to Google. Since the advanced operators are convenient for searching, Google Guide calls them search operators. Here are all of them:
Google Ultimate Interface If you want to specify what you’re looking for with more precision than Google’s Advanced Search form offers, try the Google Ultimate Interface, a third-party application available at http://www.faganfinder.com/google2.html
What Next?... Sorry, Just kidding, please let me know if you have any questions. All the Search operators are explained in next presentation. Practice makes a man perfect, and that’s goes same for the opposite sex as well So practice, Try searching with all kind of options and operators at least once to see how it looks in action. Go through the Google search and Google calculator cheat sheets.
And that’s all folks!!! Hope you had a great time learning