Google search engine uses a technology called PageRank to determine which pages to return as results of a search. First of all, every site on the Internet a gets a rank from 0-10 and is determined by the links to the web site. Each time somebody adds a link to the web site, Google interprets this as a vote for the site. The more links to the site, called "backlinks", the more votes it gets. If it has lots of links from other pages pointing to it, as told by googlebot, it will get a higher pagerank than a site with no links. The higher a page rank, the closer to the first result it will be. So a site with pagerank 10 might have the number one spot, but a site with pagerank 0 may have the 34,403rd spot.

If you are following this, you would recognize that Google may not be the best search engine to find results based on relevancy, proximity and frequency of terms.

Good places to start for a search - will narrow or expand your search - Online Dictionary, Encyclopedia and much more. All results are reference resources
Yahoo Search - Uses proximity and frequency of search words to find results. Also, check out the short cuts.

Remember Ask Jeeves? Jeeves has retired, but is one of the best search engines to use and here's why: Look at the image below. As key words are typed into the search box, the search engine offers suggestion to further guide the search.


Usually the first result is an encyclopedia entry. Notice the "Narrow Your Search" and "Expand your Search" headings on the left side. Another cool feature of is the "MyStuff" tab. Use an email address to sign up for an account. Save your searches and specific results in "folders" which can be "shared" with others.