What did we ever do before Google? Google Technology was only founded in 1998, but it seems like we've had the ever-reliable search engine helping us forever. Even the name, Google, has become a noun that means to search online for something.
Seriously, how many times in a day to you tell someone to "google" something? I bet a lot. Even in everyday conversation when someone forgets the name of a movie, or who won the last World Cup, or even just what time the pizza shop closes, we use Google.
Did you know that Google handles over three billion searches every day? Some of the top searches of last year included Meghan Markle, Hurricane Irma, iPhone 8, and Tom Petty. Surely 2018 will include the Meghan Markle and Prince Harry as top searches, don't you think?
Google is on our smartphones and our computers, at work and at home. Without being able to hit that search button a few times a day, surely some of us feel lost. So with a technological invention that's so widely used, you'd think everyone would have figured out how to use it to its full potential, right?
As it turns out, many of us are fools when it comes to Google and are missing out on all sorts of user-friendly applications of the online search engine. Check out our list of the top 12 tips and tricks you can use with Google. You might know one or two, but I bet you don't know all of them!
1. Search for unknown words.
There's no need to know the entirety of a phrase or title in order to search for it. Simply type in what you know and replace the words you don't with asterisks. Google will do its best to figure out the rest!
2. Search for related websites.
So you've found a great website with great content, and you would like to search for more just like it. Well, you can! Simply tell Google you'd like it to bring back related searches to whatever website you type in.
3. Find out flight information.
It's quick and easy to find out flight information. Just type in the airline and flight number into the search bar and away you go! No need to go through the airline or airport's website and then pour through a list of flights to find yours. Google has a shortcut!
For several bonus tips to help with your Google experience, check out the video below:
4. Search for an exact phrase or words in a particular order.
If you'd like Google to search for an entire phrase rather than for results containing your search words in any order, simply place quotation marks around your query.
5. Exclude keywords from your search.
Is Google bringing back too much unwanted information? Use the minus symbol to exclude certain keywords from your search. For example, want to search for Chris Evans the British presenter rather than the actor of the same name who plays Captain America? Perhaps try -[Marvel] in your search query.
6. Search only within a specific website.
Want to find information that's contained within a specific website? You can do that, too! Just add site:[website] before your search.
7. Define anything.
No need to dig through the house looking for a dictionary. Simply type define followed by the word you don't know and, voila, you'll get a definition.
This next one is just kind of fun to try out, even if you don't need it...
8. Flip a coin.
Not sure what to search for? Type 'flip a coin' into the search box and see what happens! This is also great for when you need to make a decision in real life, too.
9. Convert units of measurement.
It's super simple to convert miles to kilometers or pounds to kilograms or gallons to liters. Just ask Google!
10. Search by file type.
Only want to bring back searches that are a specific file type? Just tell Google which ones you'd like by adding filetype:[filetype] after your keywords.
11. Check the weather anywhere in the world.
Use Google not only to check the weather in your hometown but also see how hot or cold it is anywhere in the world. This is great for trip planning, but also if you're curious just to see how cold it gets in Siberia or how hot it currently is in Equador.
12. Customize the date range of your search.
This is great for looking up specific events that occur multiple times, such as the World Cup or the Olympics. Once you've searched, just click over to 'tools' and change the dates Google will be searching to the timeframe of your choice.
How many of these Google trips and tricks did you use before? I bet there were at least two or three new ones that you'll be looking to try out now. So what are you waiting for? Get Googling!