BIng’s snapshots – those nuggets of information that show on some general searches – are becoming more like Google’s Knowledge Graphs with its display of connected entitites.
Compare these two views of Vancouver BC. They are almost identical. Google has a map, Bing has “also searched for”.
Bing Snapshot on Vancouver
Google Knowledge Graph on Vancouver
Aaron Bradley at SEO Sceptic examined both in Bing Mounts a Personal Offensive Against Google’s Knowledge Graph (March 21)
He thinks Bing is doing a better job showing people because of social information:
“With this latest update Bing is more than ever taking advantage of its social partnerships, and is in general exploiting the availability of social information for (living) people.”
Bing Snapshot on Stephen Abram
Bing, thanks to LinkedIn, can also provide snapshots on non-celebrities. Here’s one of my favourites – a celebrity in the library world – Stephen Abram. Of course, nothing at Google, because Bing is using social networking sites.
“Bing might arguably be returning more useful Snapshot results than the equivalent Knowledge Graph results because of the additional social properties (Twitter, LinkedIn, Klout) that are displayed for living celebrities in Snapshot, but not in the Knowledge Graph.”.
The semantic technologies underpining the analysis of entities and their linkages are delivering better answers – and Bing has made a great leap forward.
Gary Price offers a replacement to Google Alerts, which are intermittent, with Talkwalker — Need A Google Alerts Replacement? Meet Talkwalker (Search Engine Land Mar 27)
Luxemborg-based Talkwalker is a social media monitoring company that has now released its own keyword-based alerts resource. The free service utilizes Google’s web, news, and blog databases and delivers alerts by email or RSS.
Full description with examples and screenshots. Gary is hopeful about the alerting tool.
Ann Smarty has found three tools that present Google’s search results using data visualization – tag cloud (Search Cloudnet), diagram of overlapping links, and Google Suggest – lovely
3 Ways to Visualize Google’s Search Results Page, Internet Marketing Ninjas (Mar 18)
Also see How to Visually Compare Google, Bing, Blekko Search Results (Free Tool!) – shows overlap between two engines.
Use cache at Google to see a copy of the page as Google indexed it. Quickly access Google cached pages in Chrome (Nicole Cozma, CNet, Feb 15) tells us why (mainly because the page you click through to doesn’t seem to have your search terms, or the webpage is not available), and where to look.
For where to look – mouseover that double chevron on the right of a search result to get the page preview – you can do that in any browser. But in Chrome, you can also use the address bar and put cache: in front of the URL. Digital Inspiration has a short video to demo this. People using other browsers can also use cache: but put the query in the Google search box, not the address bar.
This article in PCWorld introduces 20 tools (or tricks) for searching Google in privacy, and using Youtube, Gmail, Google Drive. See Ultimate Google toolbox: 20 tips, tricks, and hacks
- Startpage from Ixquick is mentioned as a way to search privately at Google – yes – but know that it’s not a Google interface.
- Of interest are tips about YouTube – there is a Chrome extension that will hide the ads!
- There’s an email game you can play with GMail — “It’s basically an alternative interface for Gmail that shows you only one message at a time and challenges you to reply in a timely fashion.”
- Do a lot more with Google Drive – including send a fax.
- Play a game with Google Maps – but you have to get the hang of the cursor.
Firefox excels in providing searchers tools for search. These articles show how to set up the tools.
Firefox Search Bar
Android smartphone users aren’t the only ones who can have fun using Google’s voice powered search. People at desktops who get tired of typing can speak to Google web search or Google map search IF they are using Chrome and Google.com or the US Google maps. This neat trick does not work for Google.ca.
Voice powered Google search
Must enunciate very clearly but not too slowly. Google will offer query suggestions – pick the one that corresponds to your intention and click on enter.
Rick Broida describes voice search in PCWorld (Feb 1) How to get Google Voice Search on your PC
Super guide to Google shortcuts and tools at Makeuseof. Starts off by defining OneBox – “Have you ever searched for the local weather and got a small widget on top showing you what the weather is like today? That’s a great example of OneBox results. ”
Are You SURE You Know How to Use Google? by Yaara Lancet (Feb 1)
Covers entertainment, numbers and conversions, travel, currency, general knowledge – such as definitions.
Speed up searches at individual sites or at a selected search engine directly from your browser. Chrome and Firefox are especially well suited for creating custom searches.
Five Custom Searches You Should Enable In Your Browser Right Now by Whitson Gordon, LifeHacker (Dec 28)
“These custom searches are very easy to set up. In Chrome, just right-click on the address bar and choose “Edit Search Engines.” You can edit existing ones or add your own, giving them a name, URL, and a keyword that you’ll type to initiate the search (like the example of
lh above. Firefox users just need to create a bookmark with the necessary name, URL, and keyword, and it’ll work like a custom search engine when you type that keyword into your browser.”
Armed with that knowledge, follow the examples given in the posting of setting up custom searches on date ranges, particular topics, dictionaries, favourite sites.
DuckDuckGo – quietly and steadily makes itself known as an alternative – maybe THE – alternative to Google. DuckDuckGo doesn’t track your history, it exercises some quality control over the sites it indexes, and it has syntax for narrowing the search. But if our tendency is to use Google, we need some help to redirect our searches.
The answer – set up your browser to default to searching DuckDuckGo from the browser bar.
DuckduckGo has add-ons for all the browsers. Review the list at http://help.duckduckgo.com/customer/portal/topics/292237-desktop/articles
If you use Chrome, this article - DuckDuckGo Vs. Google – The War Gets Dirty from Search Engine Journal (Nov 22) - describes the method for setting DuckDuckGo as the default search engine in Chrome.
You’ll note some acrimony in Gabriel Weinberg’s view of Google.