Searching tricks and tips

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Presentation on search tricks and tips (mainly Google but also Topsy, facebook, twitter, YouTube) for Cork World Social Media Day 28 June 2012 Rubicon Centre CIT Cork

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Searching tricks and tips

  1. 1. Be#er  searching   Imogen  Ber0n  
  2. 2. The  science  bit:  how  Google  works   h#p://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BNHR6IQJGZs    
  3. 3. Congruence:  matching  your  search  •  Do  your  search  keywords  appear  in  the  page  0tle?  •  In  the  URL?  •  In  the  main  text  of  the  page?  Are  there  also  other  related   words  eg  synonyms?  •  Is  the  page  good  quality?  How  long’s  it  been  there?  Do  other   quality  pages  link  to  it?  (Pagerank)  •  Please  go  to  Google.com  and  carry  out  a  search  –  if  you  can’t   think  of  anything  try  “swallow  fledgling  survival  rate”.  
  4. 4. What  do  the  results  mean?   The  actual  URL  or   web  address  is  in   green.  Reading  the   end  of  the  domain   (eg  .ie  or  .edu)  can   give  useful  info   The  blue  text  is   whatever  the  web   designer  entered  as   the  page  0tle  plus   here  the  file  type   pdf   The  black  text  is   called  the  “snippet”  You  can  choose   and  is  taken  from  what  type  of  result   For  scholarly  documents  you  can  see   the  body  of  the  eg  pictures  (images)   how  many  other  people  referenced  it   page  
  5. 5. Google  advanced  search  •  Does  exactly  what  it  says  on  the  0n…  h#p://www.google.ie/ advanced_search  •  If  you  want  to  find  Ann  followed  by  Brown  and  not  all  the   Anns  and  all  the  Browns,  put  the  search  term  in  speech  marks   “Ann  Brown”    
  6. 6. This  one  is  really  useful.  It  allows  you  to  search  within  a  specific  site.  Excellent  for  public  organisa0ons  with  useless  websites  and  hopeless  search  features  when  you  cannot  find  that  vital  form…  To  exclude  a  word  put  –  before  it  eg  Shark  –a#ack  in  the  query  box  To  include  words  with  similar  meanings  put  a  0lde  ~  before  it  eg  ~food  If  you  want  to  use  the  func0on  “or”  (ie  you  don’t  want  pages  with  both  search  terms  on)  then  it  has  to  be  in  upper  case  eg  swallow  OR  mar0n  otherwise  Google  will  ignore  it.  It  may  also  ignore  words  like  “and”  or  “in”  
  7. 7. Your  turn  •  Go  to  www.google.ie    •  Can  you  work  out  how  you  would  use  what’s  on  the  previous   slide  to  search  for  reports  about  the  elderly  in  Ireland  that  use   another  word  for  elderly?  So  words  like  elderly  but  not   including  elderly?  •  If  you  cracked  that  one  try  going  to  Advanced  search  at  h#p:// www.google.ie/advanced_search    and  take  the  “Find  pages   that  are  similar  to  or  link  to  a  URL”  op0on  and  read  through   that.  The  “related”  operator  is  a  great  way  to  find  similar  sites   when  you  didn’t  quite  get  the  page  you  wanted.  •  Show  your  neighbour  what  you  found  and  discuss…  
  8. 8. Finding  stuff  again…  •  Go  to  h#p://www.google.com/history  •  Sign  in  using  your  Google  account  if  requested  •  Your  browser  also  probably  is  storing  all  your  web  searches   too…  If  you  know  you  looked  for  a  par0cularly  site  on  a   par0cular  day  just  click  it  on  the  calendar  to  find  it  again  •  You  can  turn  off  the  history  recording…  we’ll  come  back  to   personalisa0on  and  privacy  later.  
  9. 9. What  Google  and  facebook  hide…  •  Eli  Pariser  h#p://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mzZzf6PoyC4    
  10. 10. How  to  turn  off  personalisaCon  h#p://support.google.com/websearch/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=2410479  
  11. 11. Maths,  music  and  mail…!  •  Maths:  just  type  it  into  the  search  box!   –  Eg  what’s  96%  of  300?  Or  try  20  miles  convert  to   –  It  knows  quite  a  lot  of  birthdays  and  birthplaces  of  celebs...   To  find  a  date  of  death  put  eg  die  Marilyn  Monroe  •  To  find  an  email…  use  just  the  last  part  of  the  company  website   domain  like  this:   If  that  doesn’t  work  eg  for  senior  people  who  avoid  having  their   emails  on  public  web  pages,  it’s  worth  adding  filetype:pdf  OR   filetype:xls  OR  filetype:doc  •  Example  of  a  music  search  for  Let  it  be:     in0tle:"index.of"  (mp3|mp4|wav)  let.it.be  -­‐html  -­‐htm  -­‐php  -­‐asp   -­‐jsp  
  12. 12. Serious  research…  •  Use  scholar.google.com  and  books.google.com  •  Use  the  “gearwheel”  at  the  top  right  to  alter  your  setngs  and   add  any  library  links  that  you  have  access  to:  •  Excludes  commercial  sites  –  more  manageable  •  Includes  cita0on  counts  to  help  understand  which  ar0cles  are   best  regarded  by  peers  
  13. 13. Your  turn  again…  •  See  the  search  worksheet  
  14. 14. Other  search  engines  •  Wolfram  Alpha  is  Google  for  Geeks  h#p://www.wolframalpha.com     –  The  data  is  organised  so  it  can  be  used  for  calcula0ons.  Try  putng  in   33  grams  of  gold  and  see  what  it  says…   –  The  basis  of  Apple’s  Siri  interpreta0on  of  natural  language  into  queries   –  WA  is  ace  at  everything  financial  and  scien0fic.  If  you  type  in  a   crossword  clue  you  can’t  get  but  where  you  know  some  of  the  le#ers  it   can  make  a  good  stab  at  finding  word  matches  •  Dogpile  is  a  metasearch  engine  that  looks  at  Google,  Bing,  and   Yahoo  simultaneously.  It  can  be  useful!  •  Bing  is  about  to  update  itself  to  include  be#er  social  results.  I   find  it  so  lame  I  have  not  included  it  today.  If  you  want  to   remove  it  as  your  default  search  engine  go  here:  h#p:// www.pcworld.com/ar0cle/204718/get_rid_of_bing.html  or  to   learn  about  it  try  here:  h#ps://seogadget.co.uk/what-­‐ marketers-­‐need-­‐know-­‐about-­‐bing-­‐2012/      
  15. 15. Social  search  •  Topsy  is  a  search  engine  devoted  to  spotng  men0ons  on   social  networks  h#p://www.topsy.com     –  You  can  select  which  network   –  It  allows  very  precise  0me  horizons  eg  past  3  hours  
  16. 16. Social  search  •  Twi#er  has  its  own  advanced  search  feature:  h#ps:// twi#er.com/#!/search-­‐advanced     –  It’s  very  loca0onal  so  make  sure  you  set  the  “near  this  place”  op0on   correctly  (distance)  or  it  won’t  find  anything…   –  If  you  need  to  search  for  a  product  or  person  or  company  regularly  you   can  save  your  searches  axer  you  have  made  them.   –  “Twi#er  people  search  surfaces  results  with  preference  to  those  users   who  have  a  complete  name,  username,  and  bio  on  their  profile”.   –  Just  clicking  on  a  #hashtag  in  a  tweet  automa0cally  creates  a  search   for  other  tweets  using  that  tag.   –  People  who  send  a  lot  of  spammy  tweets  eg  entering  contests  will  be   “hidden”  by  twi#er  search…      
  17. 17. Social  search  •  YouTube  search:  the  key  is  to  learn  to  use  filter  bu#on  (under   the  logo)  and  how  to  spot  the  irrelevant  promoted  videos   (ads)…  
  18. 18. Social  search  •  For  facebook  search,  type  the  name  in  the  search  box  but   then  click  on  “more  results”  and  select  People  on  the  lex.  This   then  gives  you  filters  by  loca0on,  educa0on  and  workplace  
  19. 19. Just  for  fun…  •  Irish  airspace  live  radar  h#p://www.flightradar24.com/ 53.18,-­‐5.68/8  •  Type  in  any  flight  number  to  Google  and  it  will  give  status  •  Of  course,  you  know  about  Google  Maps  and  Google   Translate?    •  Google  Alerts  sent  to  your  email  can  be  very  useful  –  set  one   up  for  your  own  name  to  be  sure  nothing  strange  is  appearing   about  you  on  the  web…  h#p://www.google.com/alerts    
  20. 20. Google  Trends   •  Who  else  is  searching  a  topic  of  interest?   •  Find  out  “hot  searches”  (ie  most  popular)   •  h#p://www.google.com/trends    Thanks  to  Doreen  O’Mahony  of  MediaManager  for  this  one…  
  21. 21. Bookmarking  to  keep  track  of  sites  •  Pinboard  h#p://pinboard.in/  (my  personal  favourite)      •  Evernote  h#p://evernote.com/    •  Delicious  h#p://delicious.com  (not  as  good  as  it  was)    •  Google  bookmarks  h#ps://www.google.com/bookmarks/    •  All  these  install  a  small  app  in  your  browser  that  allows  you  to   tag  any  interes0ng  site  and  refind  it  easily  •  To  understand  why  bookmarking  is  useful  watch  this:  h#p:// www.youtube.com/watch?v=HeBmvDpVbWc    
  22. 22. Not  sure  about  the  webpage  found?  •  Is  the  domain  name  appropriate?  Some  country  domains   (.ie,  .ca)  are  restricted  –  people  have  to  prove  they  have  a   right  to  use  them.  Also  .edu,  .gov,  .mil,  .ac.uk   –  For  .com,  .net,  .org,  .net,  .us,  .uk  they  just  buy  them…  •  Who  published  it?  NY  Times  or  a  government  website  may  be   more  reliable  than  eg  Business  Insider…  •  Search  the  URL  in  alexa.com  (site  info  for…)  to  discover   •  Who  owns  the  domain   •  Who  links  to  the  site  (are  they  reputable?)  •  Check  what  the  site  looked  link  in  the     past  using  Wayback  Machine     h#p://archive.org/web/web.php    
  23. 23. Further  reading…  •  New  “power  search”  course  free  from  Google  starts  July   10th…  6  x  50  minute  sessions  with  a  cer0ficate  at  the  end.   Register  here:  h#p://www.google.com/insidesearch/landing/ powersearching.html  •  University  of  California  at  Berkeley  reference  sheet  (excellent   but  not  very  pre#y  to  read…)  h#p://www.lib.berkeley.edu/ TeachingLib/Guides/Internet/Googling_Max-­‐Exercises.pdf  •  Excellent  examples  of  search  problems  and  solu0ons:  h#p:// www.googleguide.com/solu0ons/  •  These  slides  available  from  my  slideshare.net  account   imogenber0n…        

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