What is Google Genealogy?

While it may seem that the term "Google Genealogy" is nonsensically referring to the genealogy of Google, it is actually referring to the utilization of Google during genealogy research. Google is a very well known and very well used search engine that offers much more beyond the simple ability to search for a book or the nearest fast food restaurant. Google not only puts, at your fingertips, the ability to access several billion websites and images, but also has taken extra steps to neatly categorize information via its Google Directory feature.

Google is a very efficient search engine, this cannot be disputed. However, the best searching tools in the world are only as useful as you allow them to be. This means that you need to have at least a vague idea as to what you are looking for before you attempt a search. Entering in the words "family genealogy" will rarely get you anywhere close to the results that you are looking for.

To better organize your searches, and thus retrieve better results, consider first jotting down a few key items. Make a note of all of the names you wish to search; and, in addition to the names, make note of any dates, places, and other defining facts about each name that you have. For example, if you are searching for Jane Smith who lived in New York in 1921, you will need to be somewhat more specific when searching for data related to Jane. Simply entering "Jane Smith" into Google is likely to yield an overwhelming amount of results, few of which will have anything to do the Jane Smith that you are looking for. Instead you should enter in "Jane Smith, New York, 1921"; you are much more likely to retrieve results related to the person you are seeking. By entering in as much pertinent information as possible you are allowing Google to have more precise information so that more precise results can be offered. Be careful, however, not to input too many unnecessary words; doing so could exclude many websites. For example, entering in "Jane Smith lived in New York in 1921" will immediately exclude any websites that do not include the words "lived in."

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The folks at Google have indexed millions of websites; with a key awareness that searches can often retrieve results that are completely unrelated to what the searcher is seeking efforts have been made to neatly sort and categorize the data via the Google Directory. This section of the Google website will allow searchers to search directly within the category and topic that they are interested in. For example, to locate the Genealogy category within the directory you would select Society from the main Google Directory page. From Society you will see the Genealogy category which is then also broken down into several other options for searching. Narrowing down your possible web results this way is a fantastic tool that any hobbyist should be sure to take advantage of.

Taking advantage of all of the available tools and shortcuts offered will make your Google genealogy research run a lot more efficiently.

Source by Jeff Sallee

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