At the end of every advanced search workshop that we run, the delegates vote on their 10 top search tips. The latest course was run for UKeiG (UK eInformation Group) on Friday, October 28th and was held at CILIP in London. A summary of the tips is given below but a more detailed explanation will appear in the UKeiG members newsletter eLucidate, and in the members area on the UKeiG web site.
1. Use domain/site search to limit by type of site and to search individual sites that are difficult to navigate.
2. Trovando.it for a quick way to run your search in different search tools one by one.
3. Use Yahoo for complex nested Boolean searches.
4. Think about the format that the information might be in and use the filetype options to narrow down your search.
5. “Disappearing” pages: use the search engines’ cached pages for recently disappeared pages or the Wayback Machine for older pages and sites.
6. Use the Google numeric range when searching for ranges of prices, distances, weights, temperatures, years etc.
7. Don’t give up! If your favourite search engine is not working, try another one or a different type of resource.
8. Graball for comparing the results from 2 search engines side by side.
9. Copernic Desktop for desktop search.
10. Yahoo Mindset to adjust the ranking of results (“shopping” versus “research”)