Search engines

Search engines are used to search for resources on the Internet. They are specialized programs that look through Web pages for the occurrence of a specified word or phrase. When selecting a search engine, be aware that each search engine varies by:

  • the amount of the Internet being searched and
  • the type of sources being retrieved
magnifying glass

There is no search engine that will search the entire Internet at once. The most popular search engines may only cover 15% to 25% of all the content that is available. Often, information about coverage can be found in a search engine's Help or About Us sections.

collage of home pages for several search engines, including Yahoo Search, Ask Jeeves, MSN Search, and Google

There are many search engines available on the Web. Because each returns different results for a search, it's helpful to use more than one search engine when you are looking for information.

Search engines also come and go; many have been bought by larger companies (e.g., Yahoo!, Ask Jeeves Inc.) and incorporated into more popular search engines.

Chapter 6 — Page 8