Helpful hints to become a good Googler

FI-Log-On-With-Larry-SchneiderDear Larry,

What exactly does “I’m feeling lucky” mean when I search online using Google?

 —G.N.

 

Dear G.N.,

When you click the Google Search button on Google.com, Google produces the 10 top links that relate to the search words you entered. But when you click the “I’m Feeling Lucky” button instead of the Google Search button, Google immediately takes you to the first result of your search.

For example, if you type LARRY SCHNEIDER ACCENT in the Google search box and click I’m Feeling Lucky, you’ll immediately be directed to my website. If you then decide you want to view additional search results, click the Back button and click Google Search instead. (Note: I’m using all caps in this column to indicate Google search terms, which are not normally case sensitive.)

As long as we’re on the subject of Google, allow me to show you some Google tricks you may not know about.

When you Google the terms LARRY SCHNEIDER ACCENT, Google may find a site that contains the phrase “Bill Schneider asks if he should accent the O in the name Larry Simone.” On the other hand, if you Google the terms “LARRY SCHNEIDER” ACCENT (with the quotation marks included as shown), Google will limit the results to those pages containing the specific name “Larry Schneider” as well as the word Accent.

Thus, if you search for “GEORGE BUSH” instead of GEORGE BUSH, you’ll avoid bringing up any web results having to do with a George somebody and his prize rose bushes.

Suppose you wanted to Google the term LAGUARDIA but weren’t interested in LaGuardia Airport or Fiorello LaGuardia? Then type LAGUARDIA  -AIRPORT  -FIORELLO in the search box. The “minus signs” tell Google you want to exclude pages containing the words “airport” or “fiorello.”

Do you only read English? Click Settings, Search Settings on the bottom of the Google search page and indicate to Google that you’re only interested in web pages written in English.

Going out to eat in Greenwich tonight? Google the terms 06830 RESTAURANTS. Looking for a shoe store in Old Greenwich? Google the terms 06870 SHOE.

Shoes don’t interest you? OK, then try these on for size:

How much is (78+373) * 47 / 2? Google it and get the answer 10,598.5! (Note: * means “times” and / means “divided by.”)

Try this: How much is 500 GBP IN USD (British pound sterling in U.S. dollars)? Google these phrases (using lowercase) and find out that the answer is $848.83 (at least on the day I checked it).

Try typing a phone number, a UPS or FedEx tracking number, or a vehicle identification number in the Google search box. Or type AA10 to find out the status of America Airlines flight #10. Or type MSFT to get Microsoft’s stock price. Or type WEATHER COS COB CT to find … oh, you get the picture.

For more Google tricks, Support.google.com/websearch/?hl=en#topic=3378866.

This is Larry Schneider, logging off.

 

Larry Schneider is the owner of Accent on Computers, a Greenwich-based consulting firm — now in its 15th year of business — catering to individuals, businesses and professional offices. PC and Mac services include computer setup, training, troubleshooting, virus resolution, networking, Internet, database, and programming. Call 203-625-7575, visit Accentoncomputers.com or send email to [email protected]

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