Tutorial 2: Using Google

The tutorial this week involved learning the proper Google syntax in order to be able to search more effectively.

Here are some interesting things that I learned:

  • Google is based on an index of information
    • Google searches are only searching Google’s database using spiders which fetch information based on your search
    • A giant web is created
    • Page rank rates the importance of the website to help guide your search
  • Coming up with the best search query will help you tremendously in your Google search
  • Extra words can bring in unrelated results
    • The choice of words, and the ordering is important
  • Things can become challenging when you are searching and using acronyms. Capitalization and special characters does not matter in your search query. However, symbols like “+”, “-“, “#”, “@”, “%” do matter
    • Searching for twitter handles, dollar conversions, trending hashtags, etc.
  • Google provides extra information on the right side panel after you search, as well as auto-filling previous and common queries
    • Selecting the nature and document type you are looking for in Google will narrow down your search time
      • Images, videos, news
      • Filetype:_____ [keywords]
      • Site:__________ [keywords]
    • Google’s Ellipsis extracts a summary text from the page that best matches your search
  • The minus sign will exclude terms that you do not want to be in the search query
    • Handy when you are searching for a very broad topic and want something specific
    • Simone Roth –wordpress

Tutorial Questions

1. How would you search for an exact word or phrase?

To search for an exact word, use the “+” sign. This will force the search to include the specific word. In order to find an exact phrase, use the quotation symbols around the text. Longer and unique phrases will be easier to find, rather than ones which are general, short, and common.

2. How would you search for something on a specific site?

There are two ways to approach this question. Option A is to be utilized when you are on a web page and are looking for specific text. On Mac’s, you press Command-F, and on Window’s, it is Control-F. This will find and highlight the text you are looking for.

Option B is to be utilized when you are still searching for the correct web page. This technique will limit your search results to what is discovered on the desired site. To do this, your search would look like this: site:________ keywords.

3. How would you correctly search for a definition?

Google is an easy way to quickly find a definition.  This is how your should would look: define:______.

4. How would you search for a specific product available within a specific price range?

To search for a product within a specific price range, it is important to use the keyword’s of the product’s name and also the use of the “$” character. If I wanted to buy a new dining room table, that was only 500-600 dollars, this is how my search would look: dining room table $500..600. The two periods indicate the amount between the variables.

5. How would you search for a specific filetype?

There are two ways of solving this question. Option A is to be utilized when you are searching for a keyword and are willing to explore the different file and media types. An example would be searching “Toronto”, and looking through the Web, Images, Video and News tabs. Option B is useful when you are searching for a file and you know the exact document type, which could include .doc, .ppt, .csv, etc. Your search would appear like this: “keywords filetype:____”.

6. How would you include or ignore words in your search?

In order to ignore words in your search, you would use the minus symbol. This has the exact opposite effect of utilizing the plus sign. Here is an example: “carrot soup recipe –ginger. This will provide you with carrot soup recipeis that do not include ginger.

7. How would you find related pages?

Using many of the Google search commands will help narrow down your results. To find related pages, you must copy the URL of the page you are currently on and return to Google. In the search bar, you can use the ‘related’ command to find the pages you may be interested in. This is how your search would look: related: your pasted URL.

8. How would you find pages containing one of several words you are interested in, though not all of them?

To find pages that contain one of many words include in your search, you must use the OR command (capitalized intentionally) to allow either one of the keywords to appear. Here is an example: large OR small dogs in Westminster show.

9. How would you find the time in another country?

To search the time in another country, your search will look like this: time [country]. Ex. time Australia.

10. How would you find out how many Egyptian pounds you get for $20 Canadian dollars?

In order to search for a conversion, you must type in the number and the measurement, and what you would like it to be converted into. To answer this question, this is how your search would look: “20$ Canadian to Egyptian pound”. The answer that appears reads the following: 20 Canadian Dollar equals 129.00 Egyptian Pound.


“Power Searching with Google.” Power Searching with Google. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Sept. 2014. <http://www.powersearchingwithgoogle.com/course/ps/course.html&gt;.


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