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Anybody else think google is rubbish?

Discussion in 'Personal' started by Ivartheboneless, Aug 9, 2020.

  1. Ivartheboneless

    Ivartheboneless Star commenter

    Every time I try to search for something and get the three million hits in 0.4 of a second most of it, and sometimes all of it is totally irrelevant. I realise that sites pay google to be top of the page, but if they cannot provide relevant information why bother? There is a heavy bias towards Wikipedia, which seems to have got worse too. Anybody know a search engine where you can actually get results that are relevant rather than the poop they want you to see? Bing (is it Microsoft's version?) seems equally bad. So much for being an "information highway"!
  2. lilachardy

    lilachardy Star commenter

    Maybe you need to improve your search criteria?
  3. SparkMaths

    SparkMaths Occasional commenter

    It's interesting because we all started using Google in the 00s because it had the best search results and minimal clutter in the user interface.

    Sites like Yahoo and AskJeeves couldn't keep up. Now Google itself has become what it once destroyed with loads of bloat, especially with paid links. It also censors search results and tracks your data.

    DuckDuckGo is similar to 00s Google.
  4. coffeekid

    coffeekid Star commenter

    I've always liked Google, I have to say. Sometimes, as @lilachardy said, you have to use diferent words to find what you want, but by and large I find it a really good resource.
  5. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Star commenter

    And given that searching is free, just keep trying different things.

    My husband uses Ecosia.
  6. Mangleworzle

    Mangleworzle Star commenter

    Ignore the paid-for ads, they are marked. Wikipedia can be useful sometimes.

    Search on key words only, leave out and/is/it etc. and pick a second and third key word if possible too. Imagine the article you want to find and focus on the aspects you are looking for.

    Some searches are a lot better than they used to be, there used to be lots of commercial sites returned that were often useless for most people because they could afford to pay people who knew how to get their site elevated in a competitive search. These days those sites are more inclined to pay for an ad which separates them out.

    ACOYEAR8 Star commenter

    Boolean search is what you need to be doing, apologies if you already are !

    e.g Duck-billed platypus AND poisonous or Hotel AND Cheap AND Cardiff

    This cuts down on unwanted chaff.
  8. LondonCanary

    LondonCanary Star commenter

    double quotes around words or phrases makes those words mandatory in the search
  9. Scintillant

    Scintillant Star commenter

    Google "How to use google".
  10. Ivartheboneless

    Ivartheboneless Star commenter

    Maybe I do, but I assumed it would understand standard english.
  11. Ivartheboneless

    Ivartheboneless Star commenter

    Don't understand this. Whats "boolean search" mean?
  12. Ivartheboneless

    Ivartheboneless Star commenter

    For examples I put "descriptions of medieval battles" in, and got no such thing. Plenty of references to such battles but none were actual descriptions. The entry seems clear to me. Does it also matter what past searches I have done, as it remembers everything?
  13. LondonCanary

    LondonCanary Star commenter

    Google it.
  14. Scintillant

    Scintillant Star commenter

    I don't know. I'll google it.
    Oscillatingass and LondonCanary like this.
  15. SparkMaths

    SparkMaths Occasional commenter

    Yes, this is part of why services like Google are getting worse over time. You can't discover anything new because the algorithm is trying to be clever and predict what you want. You can turn that off though in the settings.
  16. red_observer

    red_observer Star commenter

    I quite like it tbh
    EmanuelShadrack likes this.
  17. missmunchie

    missmunchie Occasional commenter

    Maybe try Top ten medieval battles and Google should lead you to a page where the top 10 battles are described.
    Boolean searches use the terms AND, OR, NOT etc and are named after Boolean logic and the mathematician who derived it whose last name was Boole. So you can search for dogs and NOT cats as an example.
    I find I Google everything these days. My friend and I were discussing if mosquitoes do it the other day and she Googled it and the results were very interesting! :eek::p
  18. Ivartheboneless

    Ivartheboneless Star commenter

    I tried all sorts of connotations, even naming specific battles but did not get any actual "descriptions" thereof, which was the key thing I was after in the example I quoted. Wiki and other sites have trash like "top ten battles" but no detail. Anything with "top ten" or "best" is complete rubbish. I might try that duck one next time.
  19. stopwatch

    stopwatch Lead commenter

    In a Boolean search, do the key words eg AND, OR, NOT etc, have to be in capitals?
  20. Mangleworzle

    Mangleworzle Star commenter

    Watch out for plurals, "descriptions" contains description but not the other way round, so singular in this case is more specific, likewise battles/battle.
    It's a computer doing something to make it look like it understands standard English. If you can be a bit more computery in your request, it will get it better. You need to type in keywords, not a description of your page as such but exactly what important words may be on it.

    Also, you are using a computer to look for a page that you hope a human has written, so if no human has written what you are looking for you won't find it.

    Many museum and library websites are searchable on the site, but Google and others SE's can't look inside their database, I find it useful to bookmark some in a folder and then go to each and search individually, this works especially well for scanned documents and pictures.
    LondonCanary likes this.

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