Getting More from Google
Now days we all are addicted to Google let it be a developer, businessman, architect, engineer or any other professional person. Its use has been intensified in every walk of life. Also with its massive data chunk and billions of indexed web pages, one has to effectively provide a search query (keywords) to get the desired search results.
So the question arises what are the different techniques rather ways to specify a search query. Let’s dig into some points in this regards:
Using the Keyword ‘Site’:
This keyword restricts the search to particular site type like .com, .edu, etc. It can also be used to narrow down search on a particular site like google.com. Let’s have some examples:
- We need some important contact information of “AIIMS” educational institute. To narrow down the search we can employ the help of ‘site’ keyword as given below:
Phone aims site:edu
- We need to find tuition fees of MIT university
Tuition fees site:mit.edu
Searching for exact phrase:
To get an exact search result, one can specify a phrase (search keywords between quotes “”) instead of using separate words. These search keywords inside quote (“”) are presented as a single unit to Google search algorithm, enabling it to narrow down our search results. Here are some examples:
- Need Google API wiki page. Using phrases the search can be narrow down to results which contains words “Google API wiki”, eliminating results with separate words
“Google API wiki” page – Returns 37,000 results
Google API wiki page – Returns 54, 800, 000 results
- Need use case diagram of ATM machine
“use case” diagram ATM
Excluding some terms from search results:
The Hyphen (-) is used to exclude a particular term from search keywords. Google by default uses ‘AND’ operation on all the keywords provided, that is in short it matches all keywords provided. But when we append hyphen operator with any keyword, Google simply excludes the term. Let’s have some examples to get a detailed picture:
- Suppose we need information on photography but excluding Wikipedia photography -site:wikipedia.org, Google presents us search results with excluded Wikipedia info
Search results with similar keywords:
When we need search results to be more generic and should cover words similar in meaning to the keywords, we can use negate (~) sign to indicate it. This can be demonstrated by the search term given below:
- ~college pune , the negate sign appended before the keyword ‘college’, enforces Google to include similar terms like ‘higher education’, ‘school’, ‘university’, etc in it.
Search results with particular document type:
Sometimes we need information in particular document format like pdf, excel, doc, etc. To scrutinize are search results for particular document type use ‘doc:’ keyword. Its use can be demonstrated by:
- “robotics controller” doc:pdf , Google find all pdf document which
contains words robotics controller.
Using logical operators:
Google also allows us to use various logical operators like OR, AND, wildcard, parenthesis or ranges. Let’s check how it goes:
- “NASA discovery shuttle” 1999..2006, Google finds all info about discovery shuttle which were published or occurred from 1999 to 2006
- Nasa (*earth like planets OR discovery mission) 1999..2006, Google searches info about NASA’s discovery mission or NASA’s mission to find another earth.
Google as a calculator:
Google’s special query is so versatile that there is no need to open calculator for numeric expressions, just enter your expression (3892 / 89 * (90 + 23)) in Google search bar and your result will be ready.
Some other quick searches:
- Finding definition: Use keyword ‘define:’ Example: define: constipation
- For unit conversion: 1$ in INR or 400 gram in kilograms
- Search a book by author: use keyword ‘author:’ Example: triton author:Randolph Lalonde
What’s your favourite Google search technique? Tell us about it in comments.