The wind blew the cherry blossoms along the grounds. The rhythmic click, click of mousing exercises blew through the dojo and out to the wind. The Si-fu walked among the students observering their form when he began.
"Often time the best way to search is by using the right engine for the job. Searching is as an individual process as martial combat. Each person has just the right style for their personality and physicality. One might excel in Aikedo, others Tai Kwan Do, yet others might only excell in White Crane Kung-fu. Others might use Linux. Most people only use Yahoo! or Google or MSN or what ever engine is under the portal they visit. They assume that this "one style fit all" approach of most portals will be good for them. Sometimes they are right. Many times they are wrong. There are dozens of search engines out there.
The best one for you is based on two criteria:
1) Does the web search for the subject or area of the web you are interested in? You may need a specialty search engine rather than a general one. Also every site does not reach every part of the web, so each one will return different answers.
2) Does the search engine return results in a format that make sense to you? 2000 valid responses are useless if you can't understand them quickly.
What works well for me, might not work well for you. Google-fu is very JKD that way. Some people need breadth of search, others need depth, others need a 100% correspondence on the first hit, while others like to wade through a few sites before they focus on one. You need to find your own style of search, one that fits your needs, attention span, and reading speed.
I read fast and like spartan responses. I search dozens of pages before I decide to go back and investigate just one of them. (back linking to the seach page, so I have a continued choice). I use Google, Yahoo, Dmoz, Altavista, and a whole bunch of specialty sites that are not easy to use, but are useful for specific pieces of search.
One should play with a few different search engines to find the one you like. Do the same search on a few different sites (let's say RPG ), and see how the results differ. So try them out. See what they have for you.
One good place to start is on the Search Engine Guide: http://www.searchengineguide.com/searchengines.html
If you want a little more info, before you go diving in.
Google has a well-deserved reputation as the top choice for those searching the web. The crawler-based service provides both comprehensive coverage of the web along with great relevancy. It's highly recommended as a first stop in your hunt for whatever you are looking for.
Google provides the option to find more than web pages, however. Using on the top of the search box on the Google home page, you can easily seek out images from across the web, discussions that are taking place on Usenet newsgroups, locate news information or perform product searching. Using the More link provides access to human-compiled information from the Open Directory (see below), catalog searching and other services.
Launched in 1994, Yahoo is the web's oldest "directory," a place where human editors organize web sites into categories. However, in October 2002, Yahoo made a giant shift to crawler-based listings for its main results. These came from Google until February 2004. Now, Yahoo uses its own search technology. Learn more in this recent review from our SearchDay newsletter, which also provides some updated submission details. In addition to excellent search results, you can use tabs above the search box on the Yahoo home page to seek images, Yellow Page listings or use Yahoo's excellent shopping search engine. Or visit the Yahoo Search home page, where even more specialized search options are offered.
The Yahoo Directory still survives. You'll notice "category" links below some of the sites lists in response to a keyword search. When offered, these will take you to a list of web sites that have been reviewed and approved by a human editor.
Ask Jeeves http://www.askjeeves.com
Ask Jeeves initially gained fame in 1998 and 1999 as being the "natural language" search engine that let you search by asking questions and responded with what seemed to be the right answer to everything. In reality, technology wasn't what made Ask Jeeves perform so well. Behind the scenes, the company at one point had about 100 editors who monitored search logs. They then went out onto the web and located what seemed to be the best sites to match the most popular queries. Today, Ask Jeeves instead depends on crawler-based technology to provide results to its users. These results come from the Teoma search engine that it owns, which is described below.
Powered by Yahoo, you may find AllTheWeb a lighter, more customizable and pleasant "pure search" experience than you get at Yahoo itself. The focus is on web search, but news, picture, video, MP3 and FTP search are also offered.
AOL Search http://aolsearch.aol.com
AOL Search provides users with editorial listings that come Google's crawler-based index. Indeed, the same search on Google and AOL Search will come up with very similar matches. So, why would you use AOL Search? Primarily because you are an AOL user. The "internal" version of AOL Search provides links to content only available within the AOL online service. In this way, you can search AOL and the entire web at the same time. The "external" version lacks these links. Why wouldn't you use AOL Search? If you like Google, many of Google's features such as "cached" pages are not offered by AOL Search.
HotBot provides easy access to the web's three major crawler-based search engines: Yahoo, Google and Teoma. Unlike a meta search engine, it cannot blend the results from all of these crawlers together. Nevertheless, it's a fast, easy way to get different web search "opinions" in one place.
Teoma is a crawler-based search engine owned by Ask Jeeves. It has a smaller index of the web than its rival crawler-competitors Google and Yahoo. However, being large doesn't make much of a difference when it comes to popular queries, and Teoma's won praise for its relevancy since it appeared in 2000.
AltaVista opened in December 1995 and for several years was the "Google" of its day, in terms of providing relevant results and having a loyal group of users that loved the service. This is still a key site because it will easily search for responses in other languages, and has a translation service.
Compared to Google, Yahoo or even Teoma, Gigablast has a tiny index of the web. However, the service is constantly gaining new and interesting features. Give it a whirl, if you want to try something experimental yet dependable.
LookSmart is primarily a human-compiled directory of web sites. It gathers its listings in two ways. Commercial sites pay to be listed in its commercial categories, making the service very much like an electronic "Yellow Pages." However, volunteer editors at the LookSmart-owned Zeal directory also catalog sites into non-commercial categories for free. Though Zeal is a separate web site, its listings are integrated into LookSmart's results.
Lycos is one of the oldest search engines on the web, launched in 1994. It ceased crawling the web for its own listings in April 1999 and instead provides access to human-powered results from LookSmart for popular queries and crawler-based results from Yahoo for others.
MSN Search http://search.msn.com
Formerly one of Search Engine Watch's top choices, MSN Search is definitely one to watch.
Netscape Search http://search.netscape.com
Owned by AOL Time Warner, Netscape Search uses Google for its main listings, just as does AOL's other major search site, AOL Search. So why use Netscape Search rather than Google? Unlike with AOL Search, there's no compelling reason to consider it. The main difference between Netscape Search and Google is that Netscape Search will list some of Netscape's own content at the top of its results. Netscape also has a completely different look and feel than Google. If you like either of these reasons, then try Netscape Search. Otherwise, you're probably better off just searching at Google.
Open Directory http://dmoz.org/
The Open Directory uses volunteer editors to catalog the web. While you can search at the Open Directory site itself, this is not recommended. The site has no "backup" results that kick in should there not be a match in the human-compiled database. In addition, the ranking of sites during keyword searching is poor, while alphabetical ordering is used when you choose to "browse" categories by topic.
Other things to look at http://www.searchenginewatch.com/links/article.php/2156351
Specialty search engines. Really specific ones as well. http://searchenginewatch.com/links/article.php/2156181
Invisible web. There is helpful information locked away in databases that can never be indexed by search engines. These sites find it.
These sites submit your request to several sites at once and pull back the first 10 or so responses from those pages. The results can be confusing and not always accurate...
Popular metasearch site owned by InfoSpace that sends a search to a customizable list of search engines, directories and specialty search sites, then displays results from each search engine individually.
Enter a search term, and Vivismo will not only pull back matching responses from major search engines but also automatically organize the pages into categories. Slick and easy to use.
Technically HotBot isn't a meta crawler, in that it doesn't search several search engines all at once. However, it is unique in providing direct, dependable and easy access to the web's four major crawler-based search engines: Yahoo (use the HotBot button), AllTheWeb (use the Lycos button, and note that LookSmart results appear for more popular queries), Google and Teoma (use the Ask Jeeves button).
If you like the idea of seeing your web results visually, this meta search site shows the results with sites being interconnected by keywords.
Founded in 1996, Mamma.com is one of the oldest meta search engines on the web. Mamma searches against a variety of major crawlers, directories and specialty search sites. The service also provides a paid listings option for advertisers, Mamma Classifieds.
Searches against major engines or provides those who open free accounts the ability to chose from a list of hundreds. Using the "SiteSnaps" feature, you can preview any page in the results and see where your terms appear in the document. Allows results or documents to be saved for future use.
Formerly a crawled-based search engine, Excite was acquired by InfoSpace in 2002 and uses the same underlying technology as the other InfoSpace meta search engines, but maintains its own portal features.
Search Engine Watch
There is a site about nothign but search engines. Here is a listing of their most common search engines and their purposes. http://www.searchenginewatch.com/links/index.php