Re: Google - how far do you go?

Subject: Re: Google - how far do you go?
From: Mike Starr <mike -at- writestarr -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Wed, 02 Apr 2014 16:02:22 -0500

Like Julie said, search results are very dependent upon the appropriateness of the query. If you know pretty much what you're looking for you can usually nail it in the first half-dozen results. It's when you're looking for something esoteric that it may take two or three pages of search results to get one link that might yield what you're looking for or even more common for me, results that might give guidance to modifications to the query that might yield more accurate results.

And like Julie said, sometimes the search engines think they know what you want. Just yesterday I searched for a specific word in combination with another word. Google and Yahoo both "helpfully" broke that first specific word down into any instance of its first two syllables. Even enclosing it in quotes or in the case of Yahoo, starting from the Advanced Search page and putting what I was looking for in the "This exact phrase" field didn't yield any better results. <grrr> Of course, I was looking for confirmation that the exact phrase wouldn't be found but they just couldn't get past the concept that I wouldn't want a page full of invalid results rather than the two results I did manage to get.

Best Regards,

Mike
--
Mike Starr, Writer
Technical Writer - Online Help Developer - WordPress Websites
Graphic Designer - Desktop Publisher - Custom Microsoft Word templates
(262) 694-1028 - mike -at- writestarr -dot- com - http://www.writestarr.com
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On 4/2/2014 3:41 PM, Julie Stickler wrote:

I've been known to go to page two or three on Google results when searching
for work information.

And when I'm searching for some of my more obscure hobby information, I've
drilled down as far as 10 - 15 pages in Google results. Because some of
the things I'm researching are so darned obscure that no matter how well I
form my search queries, and no matter how many things I exclude, I still
tend to find useful information in the remote neighborhoods on the
Internets. Also, sometimes Google thinks it knows what I'm looking for
(and it doesn't!), and the only way to get around their matching algorithm
is to go past the first couple of pages of results.

I find that Wikipedia is a mixed bag. Sometimes it's exactly what I'm
looking for (oh so that's what that is...). And sometimes it's mostly
useful for giving me other keywords to search in.


On Wed, Apr 2, 2014 at 4:06 PM, Haim Roman <haim -dot- roman -at- gmail -dot- com> wrote:

I need a reason to spend time looking past page 1 of searches. What would
make me think that there is better information via the links on page 2, 3,
etc.? If it's clear to me that I'm not getting the info I want via the
links on page 1, then I'll check further pages. But that's often a sign
that I need different search text.

For explanations that are more than a definition, then I normally search
google. But among the results, I tend to go to the Wikipedia links.

Wikipedia is not divine revelation. But what on the net is? In fact, what
in print is? (I'm excluding religious texts from this discussion)

- "Unadulterated dreck on *all* fronts" is quite a strong charge. How
do you know?
- I tend to trust it for information on computer & network protocols,
types of computer equipment, etc., though I can't prove it's reliable
for
that.
- I'm suspect of it on political issues, but that's true for most
political material (online, hardcopy, or broadcast).
- If you can find a reliable source of information for a given area of
knowledge, then of course you should prefer that.


_______________________________________________________________
Howard (Haim) Roman -- haim -dot- roman -at- gmail -dot- com -- 052-8-592-599 -- ×××× ××××



On Wed, Apr 2, 2014 at 10:44 PM, McLauchlan, Kevin <
Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com> wrote:

In your normal, everyday interaction with public search engines (Google,
Bing, DuckDuckGo, etc.), for roughly what percentage of search instances
do
you bother to look past page 1 of the results?

Why?

That is, I'm assuming that most people check page 1 of search results and
start clicking likely links, or else take a look at what came up as page
1
and decide right away that they need to revise their search, and only
occasionally (if ever) proceed to page 2, 3, or (shudder) further.
So ... why do you mostly consider page 1 far enough (if that's what you
do), and why do you go past page 1 on those occasions that you do?

I mostly go with hits from page one of search, until I've exhausted the
links (or skipped, based on an obviously low-probability summary), and
then
I might try page 2 or three, though my perusal of links from page 1 has
usually given me some hints as to how I might usefully refine my search,
instead of going further in the current results. It's been literally
years
since I went past page 10 on any search. I'm more likely to switch
search
engines and retry a search than I am to 'go deep'.

On a related note, when you want to look up a term, and want more than a
dictionary definition, do you automatically use a standard Google (or
Bing
or...) search, first, or do you go directly to something like Wikipedia?

Finally, if you are one of those people who think that Wikipedia is not
merely ... er.... uneven, but is generally unadulterated dreck on all
fronts... is that based on recent visits, or on the last time you
bothered
in 2007... or was that 2005... ?

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References:
Google - how far do you go?: From: McLauchlan, Kevin
Re: Google - how far do you go?: From: Haim Roman
Re: Google - how far do you go?: From: Julie Stickler

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