Here are some good tips to get more from Google

  1. Use Google as a spelling aid. Entering a word into Google is a quick way to see if you have the right spelling. If it’s incorrect, Google will suggest the correct spelling instead. Additionally, if you want to get a definition of a word, you can use the “define:” operator to return definitions from various dictionaries (for example, define: parasympathetic).
  2. Use Google as a calculator. Google has a built-in calculator — try entering a calculation like 110 * (654/8 + 3). Yes, your computer also has a calculator, but if you spend most of your day inside a browser, typing your calculation into the browser’s search box is quicker than firing up your calculator app.
  3. Find out what time it is anywhere in the world. This one’s really handy if you want to make sure that you’re not phoning someone in the middle of the night. Just search for “time” and then the name of the city. For example, try: time San Francisco
  4. Get quick currency conversions. Google can also do currency conversion, for example: 100 pounds in dollars. It only has the more mainstream currencies, though — if you’re trying to see how many Peruvian nuevos soles your dollars might buy, you’ll be out of luck.
  5. Exclude specific terms using the - symbol (called an operator). You can narrow your searches using this operator. For example, if you’re looking for information about American Idol but don’t want anything about Simon Cowell, you could try: “american idol” -cowell
  6. Search for specific document types. Google can search the web for specific types of files using the “filetype:” operator. If you’re looking for PowerPoint files about GTD, for example, you could try: GTD filetype:ppt
  7. Search within numerical ranges using the .. operator. Say, for example, you want to look for information about Olympic events that took place in the 1950’s, you could use this search: Olympics 1950..1960
  8. Area code lookup. Need to know where a phone number is located? Google will let you know where it is, and show you a map of the area, too. For example: 415

9. And a cheat sheet from Google itself:

 Google Help : Cheat Sheet
Here's a quick list of some of our most popular tools to help refine and improve your search. For additional help with Google Web Search or any other Google product, you can visit our main Google Help page.

vacation hawaii   the words vacation and Hawaii .
Maui OR Hawaii   either the word Maui or the word Hawaii
"To each his own"   the exact phrase to each his own
virus computer   the word virus but NOT the word computer
+sock   Only the word sock, and not the plural or any tenses or synonyms
~auto loan   loan info for both the word auto and its synonyms: truck, car, etc.
define:computer   definitions of the word computer from around the Web.
red * blue   the words red and blue separated by one or more words.
I'm Feeling Lucky   Takes you directly to first web page returned for your query.
+   addition   45 + 39
-   subtraction   45 – 39
*   multiplication   45 * 39
/   division   45 / 39
% of   percentage of   45% of 39
^   raise to a power   2^5
(2 to the 5th power)
site:   Search only one website   admission
(Search Stanford Univ. site for admissions info.)
[#][#]   Search within a
range of numbers
  DVD player $100..150
(Search for DVD players between $100 and $150)
link:   linked pages
(Find pages that link to the Stanford University website.)
info:   Info about a page
(Find information about the Stanford University website.)
related:   Related pages
(Find websites related to the Stanford University website.)

What are your favorite Google search tricks?