Pro guide to Google searches. Part II

January 30th, 2007
progooglesearch.jpg

As I was telling you in the first part of this article, I am glad that we’ve got over the basics of Google searching so now we can look into more interesting search options.

First of all there is a part of Google’s syntax that allows you to tell it where exactly to search. This comes in handy when you know part of a URL or maybe a title but you can’t find the exact page.

You can use ‘intitle:’ to search only the titles for web pages, as many of the other functions that are to follow ‘intitle:’ has a variation, namely ‘allintitle:’ that includes all the terms that follow in to the title search:

intitle:”Santa Maria” boat -> searches in title for Santa Maria and does a search on the term boat
allintitle:pirate ships treasure -> searches in title for all the terms

I think you’ve got the idea so here is a list of syntax words that work the same way:

‘intext:’ works the same way only restricts the search to the body of web pages, excluding URLs or titiles
‘inanchor:’ a anchor is the description for a text link: <a href=”http://our-picks.com”>Our-picks</a> here Our-Picks is the anchor.
‘site:’ here you can use bot hosting and domain;this works well with the main page of a site (ex: cars site:co.uk)
‘inurl:’ searches the URL for sites, including subdirectories, it is highly recommended that you remove the ‘http:’ prefix before the search
‘link:’ this one is interesting since it shows you the sites that point to a specific URL, any page of the site not only the main URL
‘cache:’ returns the page from Google’s cache as it looked the time, useful when you want to find something on a page that changes frequently
‘filetype:’ works great with other syntax elements when you need a particular file type, like ‘.pdf’ or ‘.doc’ etc. (ex: planes filetype:pdf)
‘related:’ returns a list of pages that Google considers are related to one another
‘info:’ returns links with more informations about a given page, works well only if the page was indexed by Google.

There is another category of keywords you can use to find very specific information. Note you should not use this terms with other keywords since they don’t mix well.


‘phonebook:’ as expected searches phone numbers or gives you the owner of a certain phone number. You can also use ‘rphonebook:’ to search only residential entries or you can use ‘bphonebook:’ to look up business listings only. Note that only phonebook will work, Phonebook is different and won’t work.
‘define:’ this one is known to most and gives you a definition of the term you search
‘movie:’ is used with movie title, zip code or city and state (for the US) an gives you a list of cinemas in the area and what movies they run
‘music:’ returns only content related to music

In addition to all these Google is a calculator:

Performs mathematical operations: 5*8; 12/2; etc
Acts as a unit converter: 3 meters in yards, 9 ounces in pounds, 50 Euros in USD, etc
Google algorithms can recognize patterns in numbers you enter, so you can search for:
* Telephone area codes
* Vehicle ID number (US only)
* Federal Communications Commission (FCC) equipment numbers (US only)
* UPC codes
* Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) airplane registration number (US only)
* Patent numbers (US only)
* Even stock quotes (using the stock symbol) or a weather forecast regarding the next five days

Hopefully you have learned a thing or two about Google searches by reading this article but rest assured there is more to debate on this subject.






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Comments

  1. Sebastian:

    Very useful tips.

  2. Ron:

    Pretty good article. The text is a little hard to read, at least on FireFox but the content is useful.

  3. John Bokma:

    On digg someone asked for a NEAR like operator. The answer is, use *, e.g.

    iSCSI*Linux

  4. Glendale Winnipeg:

    These search engines are much more elaborate than the average user is aware of.
    Rahter amazing game if you ask me.

  5. Motorcycle Guy:

    I agree with Ron, the Italicized text was slightly hard to read.

  6. Chaz Palmiery:

    At the end it shows various #’s google can interpret like area codes, patent numbers, and fcc ids, but doesn’t mention tracking numbers for UPS and FedEx shipments. Google will bring up a link to the respective tracking pages for UPS/FedEx shipments with the tracking # embedded in the URL so that it takes you straight to the info about your package.

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