Google has devised a myriad of ways to find what you’re looking for on the web.  Here are a few search tips that are helpful in the office and some that may simply amuse you during a break in your day.

Exclude certain words from a Google search by adding a minus sign (-) followed by the words you want to exclude.

For example:  “computer –Linux” will remove any references to Linux computers in your search.

Have Google do the math for you by searching the equation.

If you enter 35% of 8,762 in the Google search box, you’ll get the answer right away (it’s 3,066.7).

Search the name of a holiday to find out its date.

Search local time anywhere in the world by searching “time [any location]”.

This could be a city name or a ZIP code if in the U.S.

Convert currency and units.

For example, “10 dollars to pounds”.

Find information in a specific file type by searching your topic and “filetype:ppt” or “filetype:pdf”.

For example, “Windows 7 filetype:ppt” will only bring up PowerPoints related to Windows 7.

Inserting “..” between two numbers will search within that range.

For example, “HIPAA updates 2013..2015” will deliver results in that time range.  This also works for price ranges.

Find a quick definition by typing “define:” followed by the word.

Use a calculator just for tipping by typing “tip calculator”.

Enter the total of the bill, the percentage you want to tip, and the number of people in your party for the answer.

 Google “Easter Eggs” (also known as the fun stuff)

  • If you search…
    …  “Google gravity” and hit “I’m feeling lucky” you’ll get a literal definition of gravity
    … “askew” or “tilt” will tilt your screen; “unaskew” or “untilt” will set it upright again (or just reload the page)
    … “Atari breakout” and then clicking on “images” will begin a game of Breakout (but which is somewhat buggy; the ball disappears off the side of the screen)
    … “Festivus” adds a Festivus pole to the left side of the screen
    … “do a barrel roll” or “z or r twice” will cause the screen to do a 360
    … “Google in 1998” will make the page appear as Google did in 1998
    … “zerg rush” will cause a bunch of Google O’s to attack the screen, which you can fight off by clicking on them

If you like these Easter Eggs, here’s a more comprehensive list from PCWorld.

Happy searching!