Search Engines: Are There More Other Than Google?

Discussion in 'Gadgets & Tech Talk' started by Avigail David, Jun 25, 2015.

  1. Avigail David

    Avigail David Well-Known Member
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    Perhaps you could explain to me about search egines. Why is it that when I want to search with Dr. Google, Prof. Yahoo search engines come up to my unwanted rescue? I have no issues with Yahoo, but I get confused when this go-to things appear.

    I think I should read what's before be on the screen-- allowing me the choice with my easy-click key-taps every time I search. Can I search on both, Yahoo and Google? Is there permanence in which search engine I choose to ask first? Can I opt out of the search engine whenever I want to?
     
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  2. John Donovan

    John Donovan Active Member
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    If Yahoo results appear when you search on Google, you might have an unwanted extension installed on your browser.

    As for search engines, there are many, many others. First of all, you have the top ones: Google, Bing (Microsoft) and Yahoo!
    Then, you have other obscure ones, such as Yandex and the such, which don't really get much use.
    And there is one that values privacy, which means that it won't send your personal data to companies for ad revenue: DuckDuckGo.
     
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  3. Corie Henson

    Corie Henson Very Well-Known Member
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    I'm not much of searching before but when we started to travel regularly, I learned how to search for bargains particularly for accommodations abroad. Google is the standard search engine that I use. But sometimes when I am in Yahoo, of course, I also use Yahoo search. When I installed the Chrome browser in my laptop, I tested the Bing. It is a search engine with a translator. There are some other search engines in the internet but they are not as popular as Google and Yahoo.

    There was a time when Ask.com was the number one search engine. I'm not really sure if that is still in existence.
     
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  4. Hannah Davis

    Hannah Davis Active Member
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    Yes, there are many types of search engines. I think the ones that are of course most commonly known are Google of course Bing and Yahoo. These seem to be the top three when it comes to search engine usage. I admit that for the most part I will choose Google to search on certain subjects.
     
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  5. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    There are only a few real search engines. Many of the other ones have become meta search engines, which use results from two or more search engines. Yahoo is a search engine in its own right, but it also combines its results with those of Bing, so it is both a search engine and a meta search engine. A search engine sends crawlers (spiders, bots) which follow links on the Internet, indexing web sites and web pages. In this forum, if you click into the "Members" tab, then click into the tab for "Current Visitors," you will see that they are broken down by Members, Guest, and Robots. If you click into the Robots tab, you can see which search engine robots are currently in the forum. The most commons ones you'll see in this forum are Google, Bing, Yahoo, Yandex, and Baidu. Yandex is a Russian search engine, and Baidu is a Chinese search engine. However, hackers are frequently identified as Baidu, probably because, being government sponsored hackers, they are allowed to use the search engine's resources.

    In the United States, the two main search engines are Google, Bing and Yahoo. Google has has the largest market share by far, followed by Bing. Yahoo used to be a contender but when they began mixing their results with, first Google, and now Bing, they lost a lot of the market share.

    In my web directory job, I spend all day on search engines, and I find Bing to be the more reliable by far. I earn a lot of gift cards using Bing but I still wouldn't use it if it wasn't an effective search engine, since I have to get results. Bing used to be known as Live Search, Windows Live Search, and MSN Search, so its a Microsoft utility.

    Web browsers come with a default search engine, which may change from time to time, depending on deals that are made between two companies, but most (if not all) of they will allow you to change the default search engine.
     
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  6. Carlota Clemens

    Carlota Clemens Well-Known Member
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    Great and useful information here, particularly when Google is actually falling into huge flaws getting listed on top of listing a ton of irrelevant content reworked if not via SEO, using AdWords or some kind of tricks to get there.

    I remember my own experience with search engines being Altavista the most accurate when I first came online back in 1999, and then I found Lycos to be great source for FTP search, mainly, but sadly these and other major search engines where disappearing on turned into meta search engines beubg powered by either Bing or Google.

    As for the unwanted pseudo-search engine in your browser @Avigail David, it may come either from an extensions or plugins added by yourself to your browser or inadvertently by any other type of software that you have installed.

    There is also a chance that no extension at all is present, but a change in your browser's default search engine settings that can be set back to your favorite from the settings menu. Those kind of changes come from malicious software installed or sometimes visiting websites infected by malware.
     
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  7. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    Years ago, when I used a Windows machine, there was malware that would sometimes install another default search engine, usually not an actual search engine but one that would display ads along with the results.
     
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  8. Sarah Price

    Sarah Price Member
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    Yes, it sounds like you have an unwanted extension that is forcing you to use a browser that you don't necessarily want to. I personally use www.bing.com because they pay me to do searches. Yes, they do. It's not much. I have to earn 475 points to get a $5 amazon card, but hey, every little bit helps so I'll take it. Plus, I like the awesome photos they have on their main page. They are usually quite breathtaking.
     
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  9. Diane Lane

    Diane Lane Very Well-Known Member
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    I'm so glad you posted that, John @John Donovan. I used to use DuckDuckGo, but had completely forgotten about it. I should set that to my default.
     
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  10. John Donovan

    John Donovan Active Member
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    Yeah, it's a really good search engine. It also has a pretty nice allure to it, it's almost as if you feel that it protects you and that it's something that's underground, not discovered by many. I don't know, maybe others don't feel that, but that's how I feel. It also works better than many search engines around nowadays!
     
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  11. Diane Lane

    Diane Lane Very Well-Known Member
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    That's exactly how I feel. I remember using it and not seeing the creepy ads on other sites I'd visit for items I'd searched the web for earlier. I have a stalker already, and don't need Google or another search engine to function in the same way...I find it extremely disturbing.
     
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  12. John Donovan

    John Donovan Active Member
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    In fact, I think that that very stalker of yours is Google. I think it's Google Ads that show you ads related to your recent search history. Overall, I'm just glad that someone else feels safe using DuckDuckGo and that I'm not the only weirdo feeling.
     
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  13. Diane Lane

    Diane Lane Very Well-Known Member
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    I'm always cautious giving information about to people, but Google's ability to track our every move is definitely scary. I swear, the other day I made soup here at home and never mentioned it online. The next thing I know, it appeared as an ad on one of my feeds...that was a little spooky ;).
     
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  14. John Donovan

    John Donovan Active Member
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    And Google isn't the only offender, either. Do you know why there are "tweet" and "like" buttons on every page, even on pages nobody would ever tweet about or share? Because the buttons are used as a tracking mechanism. The sites track your every move through the buttons, and they sell that information to ad companies.
     
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  15. Helene Lawson

    Helene Lawson Active Member
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    Of course there are more search engines than only Google, you can also use Bing, Ask.com, Yahoo!, those are the most popular --> you can search for other ones, that generally aren't that much popular and maybe only known in the country you are located in? :D
     
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  16. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    As I have mentioned in this forum, I spend at least thirty hours a week searching for information and sites to add to the directory that I work for. For the past few years, I have been using Bing, which regularly yielded results that were more useful than those that I was getting from Google. Plus, the Amazon gift cards that I get from using Bing were nice too.

    However, over the past week, Bing has made a change to their search algorithm apparently, because the results that I get from Bing now are not very good. Like Google, they are using the searcher's physical location and returning search results that are local to the searcher. That might be fine if I were looking for a local liquor store, church or school, but if I am searching for sites to add to a category representing a town in Minnesota, search results from Millinocket and Maine aren't doing me any good. Yet, when I do a "City, State" search on a city in Minnesota, many of my results are from Millinocket or elsewhere in Maine, and thus wholly irrelevant. The same is true when I am looking for a topic. For example, the category I am working on right now is the Knights of Columbus. Rather than giving me national or topical results, my search pages are referring me to the Millinocket chapter, the East Millinocket chapter, and every other local chapter of the Knights of Columbus, which is unhelpful. If I wanted to find the local Knights of Columbus chapter, I would specify the area in my search terms. When the search engines first began localizing search results, they gave us a choice to turn that off. I haven't used Google lately but I think they still have that option, but it gives me local results anyhow.

    Interestingly, I have found that Yandex, a Russian search engine, now gives me the best results. It's clean and yields mostly relevant search results. I knew they were indexing US sites because I see their spiders in the forum all the time.
     
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  17. Frank Sanoica

    Frank Sanoica Very Well-Known Member
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    We have three icons on the tools bar (maybe wrong, some other bar, can't keep track):

    Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer. Amongst those, if issues arise with one, we go to another. All have their faults. IE seems to have the most, but maybe because it's the original browse on our laptop.
    Frank
     
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  18. Lara Moss

    Lara Moss Very Well-Known Member
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    If you log into SAFARI, then go to the tool bar at the very top of your screen you can...

    1. Click on FILE
    2. In the drop down menu, click on NEW PRIVATE WINDOW

    The Private Window doesn't save or send any of your Activity info aka History. What you do online is completely private. When you log out, Safari remembers nothing.

    I don't know if other Browsers offer this privacy feature.
     
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    Last edited: Jul 10, 2017
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  19. Frank Sanoica

    Frank Sanoica Very Well-Known Member
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    @Lara Moss
    I have heard that the only certain way to use a computer and remain anonymous is to use a Proxy browser. I tried that. Know what? My ISP was identified anyway. Even tried one that claimed IT used an additional Proxy ID, also ID'd my computer. If Safari claims these things, there is no legal commitment for them to back that up. Doubting Thomas!

    Having a non-fixed ISP ID is one means of not being scrutinized, but that's not always easy. Another good way is to use a public computer.
    Frank
     
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  20. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    The feature for not saving your browser history to your computer is a separate issue. Normally, someone looking at your computer would be able to tell which web sites you have visited and a bunch of other stuff if they know where to look, but they'd have to have access to your computer or have a tracking cookie on your computer. The Safari setting doesn't save your browsing history on your computer, but it doesn't prevent to owners of web sites that you visit from receiving your ISP number and whatever identifying information they are set up to receive.

    For example, a woman in town asked us to help her clear her computer of viruses and malware. Not only did we do that, but we could see where she had picked all that stuff up. Since she didn't seem the type, we asked whether anyone else had been using her computer, and she said her grandson had. He had been visiting porn sites, which are notorious for attaching nasty stuff to your computer. We could see every site and every page of every site that the computer had connected to.

    It is common for commercial sites to attach a cookie to your computer. The benefit to you is that, if it's a passworded site, you won't have to log in every time you navigate to another page of the site, and it may remember you the next time you visit. The downside is one of privacy, in that some of these cookies follow you as you visit other web sites and report back. That lets large companies see what you're interested in, which allows them to more effectively target advertising to you. I don't think the Safari setting would prevent cookies from being saved to your computer, but it might. I don't know for sure, because I haven't been using that setting because I often search my browsing history for sites that I want to find again.

    You wouldn't enjoy browsing the Internet without cookies because every time you clicked on a new page, it would be like you visiting the site for the first time. You would have to keep logging in to everything. Most cookies are harmless and helpful, but some can be invasive. It all depends on what they are designed to do.

    A proxy setting is one that disguises the ISP number that you are using. Most proxy addresses are in Russia, so web site owners would think that you were logging onto their site from Russia. That's why Russia gets blamed for so much of the hacking that is going on. Although I am sure that there are plenty of hackers in Russia, hackers right here in the United States would probably be using a Russian proxy number so it would appear that they were from Russia. Yes, that is the evidence they have against Russia - ISP numbers, which prove nothing.

    Sometimes, proxy servers will work fine, and probably if you were to pay for a professional proxy service, you might get one that works well. But the free proxy servers that are available are usually very slow and problematic. That is because you first have to connect to the proxy server, then the proxy server receives the information from the site that you want to visit, and sends it to you, repeatedly, so there are a lot of extra steps that are being taken and, since the proxy server is likely in Russia, there's a lot that can go wrong en route. Plus there is the fact that the free proxy servers are probably overloaded.
     
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  21. Frank Sanoica

    Frank Sanoica Very Well-Known Member
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    @Ken Anderson
    Appreciate that, Ken! Clarifies lots of questions I have harbored. One more: How helpful is it to be certain Temporary Internet Files, which I assume means the RAM, are cleared after each use?
    Frank
     
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