Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Search Like a Pro 2012

Nancy Warren the Access Services/Systems Librarian at Fredrikson & Byron in Minneapolis, Minnesota sure can make Google sing like a canary and equally impressive is her knowledge of Bing. Of course all the information on Google may change March 1st after the big upgrade.

Nancy started off with the usual search suspects of AND, OR, and NOT, telling how they have changed recently. For instance, if you want to use OR as a boolean term you need to use the advanced search feature.

One of the things that Nancy talked about that I found most interesting was the discussion on synonymization and localization. You get the feeling that this stuff is happening in your searches, you hear rumors, but I have never actually known for sure that it was going on and that they fit together. Use any two letter state code in a search in Google and it will automatically use the spelled out version as a synonym. Compounding this is localization, Google knows where you are will float sites in your geographic area to the top of your result list. With the two letter state code AK and localization it will only find Alaska stuff, if for some reason you wanted sites that talk about AK in a different context than as Alaska you would have to use the Verbatim tool.

Which leads me to the Special Queries/Features, some of which I have been able to find but others that I can’t find. I’m still looking. I found the unit conversions, currency converter, movies. I haven’t been able to find calculus graphing, sunrise/sunset, package tracking, or flight tracking. I’m still looking though.

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