28 April 2008
Limiting a Google search to recent items
I've used Google for searches since its inception, and had it as my browser's home page until Wikipedia came along. One problem with Google is its gargantuan range; a search for a simple topic may yield 730,000 hits. A proper search for the most relevant item may require using Google's "advanced search" function, which can be daunting. Several websites, including THIS ONE by Google, facilitate specialized searching.
An extremely useful filter that I had not encountered before was posted on Presurfer this morning and is illustrated above. It allows one to search only for recent information - an incredible advantage when searching for current events. The original article is here at tech-recipes.com, but I'll excerpt the instructions below.
First go to google.com and search for your search term. Next, just add &as_qdr=d to the end of the URL and press ENTER. This triggers a Google dropdown box to appear (see image above). With the dropdown box you can select a time filter for limiting the search. Also, you can change the =d to d5 for 5 days, or w5 for 5 weeks or y5 for 5 years.
Let me add two personal tips. First, the &as_qdr=d has to be added to the URL, NOT the Google search term (it took me about 5 minutes to figure this out).
Secondly, I would personally never remember something like &as_qdr=d, so an easy workaround is to do it once with a common term (perhaps in ALLCAPS), and then bookmark that search as "time-limited Google searches." For future searches, go to that bookmark and just change the term in ALLCAPS in the url.