Search engine comparison

I chose to compare the results of three different search engines:

– google

– duckduckgo

and

– instagrok

I ranked them:

1. google

2. instagrok

3. duckduckgo

Instagrok was set out in a way that allowed me to work with and annotate the results. It provided different layouts as well, catering for different learning types. It took a while to load, however, and did not offer obvious links to other sites. I would use it again for school research, but only in combination with another search engine.

Duckduckgo was faster than Instagrok but the colour and font looked less professional than google, which it was more similar to.

Google still stands as my favourite search engine, and it knows it too. It was the quickest and the most accurate. It offers definitions as other search engines do, but the  search results are more relevant.

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Google Alerts

I recently set up three google alerts for things that interest me:

  1. Harry Potter 
  2. Ed Sheeran
  3. Cyclone Oswald

Using these alerts, I found out the following things in 24 hours about my interests, without having to do anything but open an email:

I found this a really convenient way of keeping track of things I’m often googling.  The answers were there in my email for when I  wanted them and I did not have to check them.

However, it got me thinking about our need for information. Is it really necessary to find out everything about a news story or your favourite series without looking? To me, it was my computer encouraging me to be lazy. While it saves time, this method of sourcing new information is pretty full on.

I’m not denying that the internet and google have done a lot of great things for us, but shouldn’t we at least try to pretend our lives aren’t been entirely consumed and ran by machines, and stalk our favourite artists all on our own like big kids?

These google alerts can be cause for information overload, should you let them. While reading an article about this concept, I started to feel more comfortable with my opinion that these alerts aren’t all that necessary. The article deals with the fact that we are all students when it comes to the internet and social networking. While it admits that this is all a revolution  I support the claims that state in terms of our internet usage,

“there is a very real human cost of social connectivity”.

I feel that creating alerts for every single update on whatever we chose is one facet of the internet that will cost us. My final thoughts on the subject revolved around this: Is it really that hard to just google something again?

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The mentioned article can be found here: http://www.briansolis.com/2012/05/the-fallacy-of-information-overload/

Using RSS to do research

I’ve been using RSS feeds to do research on my favourite clothing websites.

It has been really useful as I get notifications whenever the sites change aka, whenever a new item is released on there.

A good example is featured in the image below, in which I can see the latest posts on Market HQ.

  • I can look at individual posts as well as a list of recent posts
  • I am able to see the number of changes that have been made to the site
  • This number will disappear after I have had a look on the site, enabling me to remember what I have and haven’t looked at

Now that I am using the RSS feeds, I have been able to research about a new skirt that I want to buy, and can buy it without even having to online shop, let alone shop in store.

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A quirky quote

It is very often nothing but our own vanity that deceives us

-Jane Bennet in Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice

This is a favourite quote of mine as it offers a quirky perspective on the flaws of the human condition, supporting the theory that we can be our own worst enemy.

Follow Jane Bennet on twitter: https://twitter.com/Jane_Bennet

‘Your grammar sucks #46’ video review

I was laughing the whole four minutes and six seconds of this video. It was a good length, I didn’t once find myself checking to see how much was left. It left me wanting to see more videos from its channel when usually I would just go looking for more recommended content.

The sharp delivery of each line invited me to imagine the lives of the people who originally wrote them. This got me thinking about what they could possibly do with themselves to think that something can be of ‘of fence’, or to state they are ‘pist of an downt fell well’.

The fact that this is only an example of the terrible, yet hilarious grammar disasters posted daily online left me both curious and mildly disturbed about the direction in which cyber slang is heading.

It’s definitely worth a view and is a perfect confidence booster for those times when you think you’re failing at life.

i wood be wach it agen guyz xx

Potato

How great are potatoes?

I think potato is one of the most versatile foods out there. Think about it.

It is socially acceptable (in Western society) to eat them with every meal. They taste good with everything. You can cook them in almost any way.

They are a vital part of the perfect fast-food-hangover-cure. Nothing satisfies nausea and a blinding headache like a couple of hot, greasy hash browns. And while there is nothing wrong with pumpkin, you can’t mix it with mayonaise and ham and eat it in delicious salad. What else is better next to your families roast meat than (sweet) potato? And where would you be on a cold winters night without the comfort of a mouthwatering shepherds pie?

Take a look at the graph* linked below. Among other great benefits,  one baked potato counts for over 27% of your daily Vitamin C intake.  This proves them to be more than just a comfort food (Guilty conscious cleared).

Aside from their great taste and nutritional value, potatoes can replace many necessary household items. Here are a few of my favourite uses for potatoes:

  • paper weights
  • Grass head potato friends
  • stocking fillers for naughty kids
  • real life Mr. Potato head games

I’m not the only one to share this perspective. In the 1800’s, potatoes were heated and kept in the pockets of travellers, to keep them warm throughout the duration of their journey.

Stil not convinced? Check out this great blog** and see that I’m not the only potato advocate out there.

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*http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=48

**http://rominagarciamartyrhood.blogspot.com.au/2011/12/seven-reasons-why-potatoes-are-better.html