A search engine is an information retrieval system designed to help find information stored on a computer system. However, in most cases; when we speak of “search engines” we are actually referring to a “web search engine” – which is a public search engine designed to search for information on the World Wide Web.
Search engines help to minimize the time required to find information and the amount of information which must be consulted, akin to other techniques for managing information overload.
The information searched and retrieved may consist of web pages, images and other types of files. Some search engines also mine data available in newsbooks, databases, or open directories. Unlike Web directories, which are maintained by human editors, search engines operate algorithmically or are a mixture of algorithmic and human input.
There are various types of search engines, the most commonly used (popular) ones are listed below:
- Live.com (MSN)
These search engines are used for pretty much anything. However, there are also dedicated search engines which can find more specific information/resources – some examples listed below:
- Google Code Search
- The Pirate Bay
- Google Maps
- Live Search Maps
- Yahoo! Maps
- Google Product Search (formerly Froogle)
- MSN Shopping
- Shopzilla (also operates Bizrate)
Question and answer
- Lycos iQ
- Live Search QnA
- Yahoo! Answers