What You Should Know About Web Searches

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At www.post-gazette.com

Doing a search in Google or Yahoo seems as easy as falling off a log. You just type in a word, and almost instantly you get a page of links to Web sites that bear some relevance to that search term. But too often your search results aren't exactly what you'd like. Irrelevant links can clutter the page, especially when your search term is ambiguous. If you type in 'chips,' the search engine has no way of knowing whether you mean computer chips, potato chips or chocolate chips. In fact, when I tried searching Google for that term a few days ago, the top result was a reference to the old 'CHiPs' TV show. A few simple tips and tricks can help you get much more out of a Web search without becoming a professional researcher. Some are better techniques for general searches, others are simple ways to do more-targeted searches, which can often yield answers, rather than merely links.

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