You can do much more with a Google search than just enter plain search terms. You can use modifiers like quotes, dashes and asterisks to search for more specific things. You can also search on a particular web site or for specific terms in a page title. There are also many bits of information that you can find without having to leave Google, such as definitions, weather, movie times, flight times and conversions.
Hi this is Gary with MacMost Now. On today’s episode let’s look at some Goggle search tricks.
Let’s start off with the simplest one that you may already know. You can search a specific website by typing site:and then the name of the web site; no space after the colon. If I wanted to search MacMost.com I would so that and then type in the search term. So I can do keynote to look for keynote tutorials and you can see all the results here are at MacMost.com not other web sites. This is a quick and easy way to search a website especially if the website doesn’t have a very good search feature.
For instance here I have searched discussions.apple.com for iPod screen cracked and you get right to posts that have that in the title or in the body of the page.
So here is something that even people who use site: don’t know. You can do restrict the search to a . like .gov here just by typing it like that and then you can say look for something and it will restrict it to only only .gov websites or .org or .edu.
Here is another one that you may already know. You can use quotes ” ” to search for something exactly. So for instance search for “mac mini” those two words appearing exactly together put quotes around it. You can still put other search terms there but it will always make sure that it searches for mac and mini together not just as two separate words.
You can also use a modifier before a search word. For instance minus -. So if I search mac right here you can see I come up with lots of hits for cosmetics. So I could eliminate that by putting -cosmetics and it won’t get any search results with that word in it again.
You can also limit the date range for search terms. For instance I can do pages tutorials 2010..2013(have the two periods there) and it will search for that range. You can use that for years but you can also use that with numbers like monetary values for searching for prices.
Now like the site: modifier you can actually use something called file type to search for a specific file type. So you can do say mac keyboard shortcuts and you could do filetype (just one word there) colon : and then a common type of a file type like pdf. Hit search and you can see I only get pdf results for mac keyboard shortcuts.
You can also use intitle: to search for specific word or words in the title. So for instance I can do intitle:”pages tutorial” and my searches will always have pages tutorial in the title of the page.
Here is a cool one that few people know about. You can use an asterisk * to have a place holder word. So for instance you can do this “i want * for Christmas” and the results will be terms that say I want, then something, for Christmas. So I can do that with all sorts of different searches and come up with some interesting results.
So Goggle has some interesting things you can search for. For instance you can use define: and get a dictionary definition from Goggle. You can also do math and get not only the results but you can get a little calculator that you can use to continue getting calculations.
You can also do so really cool stuff like conversions. Say 56 inches in meters and get the result there and then modify that result from there.
That works also for currency. So you can say that and then you get a quick currency conversion even with a little chart of the exchange rates.
You can get flight status right in Goggle without having to go to a website. All you have to do is know the number for the flight. So let’s type in just a random flight that I looked up and you can see that I get the current flight status for it.
This also works you can also type in a package tracking number. Either a FedEx tracking number or a UPS one. So if you get an email with a tracking number in it which is usually pretty long. You can copy it and paste it in here and then it will give you tracking information right there without having to go to a specific website.
Goggle also let’s you look up sports scores. So you can basically type a name of a sports team and right there at the top it gives you previous results and the next game. You can jump to various websites, for instance I think this will take you to the NBA website, for those recaps.
You can also search for movie times very easily. Just type the name of the movie and then movie times and then right here at the top of Goggle you will get local movie theater times.
So two last things that you can type. Name of the location and then weather and you get a little weather report here at the top of Goggle and in addition to that you can type in sunrise to get a quick sunrise time and sunset as well.
So keep in mind you can also combine a lot of these. For instance you could put a search term in quotes and also use the minus symbol for subtracting a search term and then use site: to restrict the results to a specific website. So you can combine lots of these together to get even more accurate search result.
I hope you found this useful. Until next time this is Gary with MacMost Now.