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Sunday, March 22, 2009

Google Web Search

David Pogue's Keynote and Google Workshop at the 11th Annual ASSET Educational Technology Conference.

I attended the ASSET (Association of Suffolk County Supervisors for Educational Technologies) conference on Monday, March 16, 2009. The keynote speaker was David Pogue of the New York Times. His keynote address was phenomenal. He talked about how mobile technology advanced so much now as cell phone use is not limited to making phone calls anymore but is used for other purposes like emails, text messages, Internet browsing.

He had a lot to say about the phenomenon of Google. He mentioned Google many times during his keynote and then also presented a workshop on “The power of Google”. In this post, I I want to share all the information that David Pogue shared with us about Google.

Instead of calling 411 for information and having to pay for it, you could simply text “Google” (466453) and then type in your question. It could be any question like “Who is the president of Mexico?”. You will get an instant answer. If you don’t want to text, then you can call 1-800-GOOG-411 and ask your question. You could ask for a phone number of a certain store and you will be connected to it directly.

In the workshop titled ‘Power Googling’, David Pogue, spoke about the various search features of Google. It goes beyond simple web search. Here are some tips”

If you are searching for a word like ‘Dolphins’, chances are that your search may also include information about the Miami Dolphins. In order to omit this information, you should enter your search as ‘dolphins -Miami’, meaning search for the word dolphins minus the word Miami.


If you are looking for an exact phrase, then you should put the phrase within quotes - “Exact phrase”, otherwise Google will also search for each key word separately. For example: "The Count of Monte Cristo" will generate a search result of all the websites that has the exact phrase "The Count of Monte Cristo" and not look for sites that also contain "Count", "Monte" and Cristo".

Use an asterisks '*' for wildcards, especially if you are looking for music lyrics and don't know that complete title. For example, la vida es*.

If you are looking for a specific type of file, for example, if you are looking for a PowerPoint file on 'The Imperfect Tense in Spanish', then you should type 'imperfect tense Spanish .ppt'.

Google in Quotes: Find quotes on different topics by using this site.

You can search Google in different languages by going to the Google preferences and choosing the language from the list.

Google Translate - Using the language tools offered by Google, you can view your website in a different language. Simply paste the URL of the website in the box, select the language and click 'Translate'. Click here to view this blog in Spanish.

There are other everyday queries that you can look in Google Search. I have listed them below:

- Showtimes: Enter zip code (Showtimes: 11803).

- Define: Enter word (Define: gendarmerie).

- You can use Google Search as a calculator by entering the calculation in the search box (89 + 90 x 45).

- You can use Google Search as a unit converter by entering your query (kilograms in pounds).

- Use the search as a currency converter (dollars in euros).

- Weather: Enter name of city (Weather: NYC).

- Use the search as a stock ticker by simply entering the symbol of the company (amzn).

- Search for product details by entering the UPC barcode number.

- Search for flight details by entering the flight number (IB 6842).

- Search car history by entering the VIN number.

- Look for a person - Phonebook: Enter name and place (Phonebook: John Smith NY).

- Look for directions - (Directions: NYC to Boston). You could also use Google Maps for directions.


These were just some of the features of Google search. I have to thank David Pogue for sharing all this information with us during the conference. It really changes the way one looks at Google search.

Here is a video that will help with web search:

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