Top Search Engines

Search engines have become more like a necessity for almost every person using the internet. Whether it is a student, a businessperson or a teaching professional; all of them make use of search engines. As people are quitting book-reading, web is becoming the primary source of information and knowledge. This is why students search on Google, Yahoo and Bing for preparing their assignments and projects. In this article, I am going to discuss the major search engines available on the internet. These search engines have aided and are helping hundreds of thousands of people seeking information and knowledge.

Though there are many search engines that working nicely on the World Wide Web, but I am going to discuss best three out of them.

  1. Google
  2. Bing
  3. Yahoo

I am certainly not going to rate these three search engines; all I will do is discuss their working and services provided by them.

1. Google

I am definitely not being biased, but Google is most widely used for online search. If you have noticed, to perform online search has become synonymous with “to Google”. Results that Google shows are very much to the point and relevant.

This search engine is owned by Google Inc. It was created by Sergey Brin and Larry Page. It was launched on 15th July 1997, and has proven to be the most used web search engine.

Google does not use the usual keyword based page ranking system used by other search engines. Instead, it uses a patented algorithm which is known as PageRank. PageRank works more like a human mind and tries to figure out the extent of relevance between a searched for word and a resultant page. Also, there are other criteria that determine the search results. In results, Google does not only show web pages, but it also gives results in other file formats like .pdf. You must know that there are a lot of online data which is usually not accessible by these search engines. This data is called deep Web and includes government documents, library indexes, phonebooks etc.

Search engine optimization is a new field that guides website owners as how to increase their ranking in search engine results. The company has also published guiding principles for legitimately increasing ranking.

Google Tools and Services:

A[part form the typical Google Web search, thereare several other options I Google Search like Images, News, Books, Scholar, Translate, Documents, Reader etc. Google has offers a free web mail service Gmail, which is getting popular with every passing day. Other major services rendered by Google include Chrome (web browser), Earth (Mars, Moon, Sky), Picasa, Talk, Gears, Toolbar, Buzz, Calendar, iGoogle, Orkut, Maps, YouTube, AdSense, AdWords, Blogger and Panoramio. Though there are a host of other tools too, but these are the most commonly known and used.

Google Search is available in a lot of languages, including two different versions for both Chinese and English. Google has a pretty nice feature of Suggestions; you start typing a word and with every letter that you type, suggestions are given by Google in the drop box. This feature really helps while searching.

2. Bing

Bing is another web search engine from Microsoft. It was preciously known as MSN Search, Windows Live Search and Live Search. The slogan says, “Bing and Decide.” It was launched on 1st June, 2009. Bing comes third in rating of web search engines, Google being at first place and Yahoo at second.

Features:

Bing has a nice user interface which is fun to use. Following are some of the salient features of this search engine.

  • Background is colorful, usually a photo of a prominent place. Sometimes, it features pictures of people, animals and sports. Few spots at the background image are highlighted with a box, which reveal certain information about the photo.
  • Left side navigation pane gives options like Images, Videos, Shopping, News, Maps, Travel, Entertainment and Search History.
  • Like Google, suggestions are there.
  • Lower right side shows popular searches.
  • Lower left corner gives link to the past background images archive.
  • Other major options include Local Listings, Visual Search, Dictionary, Events, Finance, Online Games, TV, Recipes, Music, Movies, Social, Universities, Weather and Wolfram Alpha.
  • Other offers include Toolbox, developer Centre, Webmaster Centre, Advertising, Community, Club Bing, Blogs, Forums, Help and Translator.
  • Once you have entered your search term and results have been shown, you can see Related Searches on the left pane and Sponsored Sites on the right hand side.
  • Thumbnail preview of videos and images is provided, where custom settings are also available.

Searching on Bing is fun, at least according to me. If you are searching for a certain product for instance Blackberry Torch; the search results will include Reviews, News and Shopping options. I found the Shopping feature really helpful.

In July 2009, Yahoo and Microsoft entered an agreement for 10 years, according to which Yahoo search Engine will be replaced by Bing search. Same Yahoo UI will be used but the search results shown will be of Bing.

There were some issues regarding adult content in the beginning of Bing’s arrival. If the safe search option was turned off, the adult content was shown in the images and video search. Also, video started playing only by hovering over the thumbnail. The parental control sites showed Bing.com as the hosting site, as the videos were played within the search engine. Fortunately, Microsoft paid attention towards the matter and now an independent domain explicit.bing.net is shown in the parental control program reports.

3. Yahoo

This is the second largest web search engine, after Google and before Bing. It was launched in March, 1995. The home page shows a search bar and an option underneath for making Yahoo the homepage. Above the search bar, there are some options like Images, Video, Local, Shopping, News and More. You can find more options in the More section. These other options are Answers, Directory, Jobs, Sports, Finance, Preferences and Advanced Search.

As in Bing and Google, suggestions are shown in the search box. On the result page, left hand pane shows Search Pad which “saves links to visited sites” for later use so that the user does not have to research for the topic; SearchScan that gives you the confidence of knowing which website is harmful to your system; some websites that might be helpful to know about the searched for query, and related search options. Search for e.g. HTC Evo 4G and you get related search suggestions, video results, reviews and news.

It is available in many languages spoken across the globe.

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