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About Search Engines
On the Internet, the most common way to find information - pertaining to job search or any other topic - is through use of a "search engine." You tell the search engine what you're looking for (a "query"), and it responds with a list of websites containing that information ("hits"). Links to several popular search engines are included here.
Composing Your Query
The primary way in which search engines differ is in how they allow you to compose your query. While some permit you to type in your search request in natural language (plain English), many use a "keyword" search method -- you enter a few words joined by logical operators such as AND, OR, and NOT to define what you are looking for. Some search engines require you to place quotation marks around phrases in your query; others use plus and minus signs in place of AND and NOT; some are case-sensitive, others are not. Still others will search for anything containing the "stem" (a substring; usually the first several letters) of your keywords. One search engine, Excite, actually performs concept-based searching -- searching for what you mean, not just the keywords you have typed. And AskJeeves allows you to enter your query in standard question format.
Tailoring the phrasing of your query to match a particular search engine's requirements is essential to receiving the most relevant results from your search. Therefore, it's a good idea to carefully read any instructions or tips (which may be located under a heading of "advanced search options" or in a "help"screen) provided at each search engine's site.
Online directories can also be useful sources of information. Most function like nationwide editions of a traditional telephone book, and are the best source for looking up contact information for businesses or individuals. Links to several directories are included here.
|Alta Vista by Digital||Ask Jeeves||Excite|
The following sites allow you to perform submissions to multiple search engines from a single location.
More links to sites which may be helpful in your job search are listed, with descriptions, on our Hot Links page.
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