Exploring More Google Options

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What Are My Options?

Google Web Search. Screen Capture by S. Shapoff

Have you ever noticed those extra links at the top of the Google search engine page? Videos, Images, News, Shopping, More. These are keys to some of Google's most effective web search options. Let's take a tour to learn more. .

We'll search for a phrase that could have many meanings. "Quality of mercy" is one that can refer to multiple things. A simple Google search engine query yields a variety of results: books discussing Shakespeare, lyrics to a song, a synopsis of a Twilight Zone episode and a movie.

You can learn more about refining Google web searches here, but let's explore the other searches we can make. 

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An Image Is Worth?

Google image search
Google Image Search. Screen Capture by S. Shapoff

Click on the Images link and Google transfers your search to Google Images. This is a search of only image files. Google determines which images meet the search criteria by looking at the name of the image file and the text surrounding it. The phrase "quality of mercy" results in CD and movie covers, still frames from the Twilight Zone episode, and pictures of a book called Quality of Mercy.

Remember, the image files that are linked may still be under copyright protection.

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The Google Video Search

Google video search
Google Video Search. Screen Capture by S. Shapoff

Click on the Video link above the keyword search box and Google transfers you to a Google video search. Google Video contains a collection of both commercial and non-commercial videos.

In the case of "quality of mercy," most seem to be oriented around movies, plays and television shows. You can further refine your search results by using "Search Tools" and sorting by price (free or for sale), duration (short, medium or long), or by relevance, date or title. Clicking on a video link will take you to a page with more information about the video and will either play the video or, in the case of commercial content, a preview portion. 

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Good News

Google news search
Google News Search. Screen Capture by S. Shapoff

Click on the News link above the keyword search box and Google transfers our search to Google News. Google News searches go through only current event items that match the search criteria.

Learn more about Google News here. Now let's move on to Maps.

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Google Map It Out

Google maps search
Google Maps Search. Screen Capture by S. Shapoff

Click on the Maps link tucked in the "More" drop down menu and Google transfers the search to Google Maps. It searches for places and businesses that match the keywords, or it might question you further about what you're looking for. Matches are marked on the map with flags. The map can be manipulated with your mouse and you can get driving directions. The interface is very similar to Google Earth.

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More, More, More

Google more search
Google More Search. Screen Capture by S. Shapoff

You can also click on the More link to select additional searches. It opens a selection box that lets you choose Shopping, Books, Flights or Apps. 

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Google Book It

Google books search
Google Books Search. Screen Capture by S. Shapoff

Google Books lets you search through a massive database of printed books. The search results tell you the name of the book in which the keyword phrase appears and the author. It shows the page on which the phrase appears, if appropriate, or the first page of content for books that contain the keyword phrase in their names.

Click on any results link and you'll see a scanned page from the book with the keyword phrase highlighted. You may be able to browse through more pages, depending on Google's agreement with the publisher. You'll see more information about the book on the right, including book reviews and links to purchase the book from multiple vendors.

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Shopping With Google

Google shopping search
Google Shopping Search. Screen Capture by S. Shapoff

Click on Google's "Shopping" search engine for products and services. In this case, the results are for a variety of books titled Quality of Mercy. Results can be sorted by price, by the location closest to you, or by store. This is one of the most useful searches you can do for a specific product for purchase.

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Google Apps

Google apps search
Google Apps Search. Screen Capture by S. Shapoff

Finally, clicking on "Apps" in the More menu takes you to a page listing more Google products. You can see options for more searches, such as catalog search. You can also see services for creating blogs or organizing photos. It's worth going here when you've got some time to explore. You never know what new service you'll find next.