10 Cool Things You Can Do With Google

Posted at October 14, 2011

Regular searching is so 2002. There a ton of nice little gems packed right into the google.com search results page, so you don’t even have to click on any of the result links.  Have you done any of these things with the trusty goog?

1. Check the weather. Just type “weather” followed by the name of a U.S. city, state, ZIP code, or a city and country.

2. Get sports scores. Type the name of your favorite team (e.g. “Baylor Bears”) and you will get stats on recent game activity.

3. Use it like a calculator. Add, subtract, get square roots, sine and cosine, etc.  Just type your math problem into Google and their massive googleplex of servers will crunch on your tough math problem until it gets the answer. So now we really, really don’t need to remember anything we learned in math.

4. Get public demographic data. Get population counts 0r unemployment rates where you live, along with a graph of trends. Here’s how it looks for our county:

5. Use it like a dictionary. Just type “define” followed by a word, and you’ll get the meaning. Webster in your pocket! (Hint: you can also use it like a spell checker, or a thesaurus–type  a tilde character in front of the word to get synonyms, like this: “~theology”)

6. Local search. Type in the name of a business, restaurant, food type, or category followed by a city or zip code.  You’ll get a handy list of results (Tip: www.bing.com actually has a richer display for this kind of search, so you may want to try both).

7. Track your flight. Don’t waste time calling your airline, downloading their app, or even looking at the airport monitor screens!  Just whip out your phone and search Google for (for example) “Airtran flight 355″ and you’ll get the latest data.

8. Convert units. Guys, this is a total lifesaver when your wife sends you to the grocery store for 2 Cups of heavy whipping cream.  What? They don’t sell it by the cup? How many cups are in a quart? Google knows. Just search “convert 2 cups to quarts” and voila… you have your answer.  Also works with miles, kilometers, pounds, currency, etc.”

9. Find out who is linking to your Website. Search “link:youraddress.com” and you’ll get a list of all the sites linking to you. Remember, the more sites that link to yours, the better your search rankings!

10. Search within a single website. If you preface your search with “inurl:webaddress.com”, type a space, and then your keyword(s), Google will limit its results to just the site(s) that contain the domain you specified.  This may be a quicker way to search within your own site!  Example: “inurl:siteorganic.com church website”

Google has even more tips here.

What’s your favorite feature of Google? Do you have a favorite feature on another search engine, like Bing or Yahoo?

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