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Internet Search Guide: Search Tools


The following page outlines a variety of tools used to search for information on the World Wide Web.

It's a good idea to become familiar with different directories, search engines, metasearch engines, and specialized tools because not a single one indexes the entire Internet.

Crawler-Based Search Engines

Crawler-based search engines, such as Google, create their listings automatically.
They "crawl" or "spider" the web.

Internet surfers get what search engines gather, which means that the search is not done in real time, hence resulting in some dead links and changes in the URLs.

Directories (aslo known as "Virtual Libraries" or "Portals")


     -Index web pages selected by editors

     -Organized into hierarchical subject categories

     -Search a description of Web pages, not the full-text

     -May be annotated


Search Engines


    -Use "spiders" or "knowbots" (computer programs that
       roam the Webfor sites and 
keep the search engines
       up to date)

     -Provide keyword searching of words in pages or 
      full-text of selected pages  

      -May not have subject categories

      -May not search "invisible web" of information stored   
      in databases 


 To understand the relationship
 between main search engines 
click here  

Metasearch Engines


     -Search several individual search engines simultaneously
      and compile results

     -Only catch about 10 percent of the search results of
      the engines visited 


  • Dogpile
  • Kartoo
  • Vivisimo                                                                                                                                     

Specialized Tools


    -Provide a subject-specific searchable database
     of indexed web page content

    -Capture content of some of the "invisible web"

    -Link to a list of specialty search engines

    -Link to a directory of international search engines