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5 Google Tips To Improve Your Search Experience

Google is known as a major-league search destination and as the source of "wish I'd thought of that" apps such as Google Earth, the Picasa photo-sharing program, and Gmail. However, a closer investigation turns up both some little-known ways to get the most out of your searches and some funky productivity boosting applications you might not have heard about.

Create Customized News Feeds

All the world's news may be at your fingertips on the Web, but one still typically has to either browse through an online newspaper, visit a bookmarked site, or browse through a long list of RSS feeds to find that nugget of interest. What if you could create a customized feed, which would instant present you with just the news you're interested in? Perhaps you're interested in what Microsoft is up to. Or maybe you've been slacking off on the technology and following Britney Spears instead. Either way, Google News Feed is the app for you.

These feeds are a refinement of Google's widely used news page, which aggregates news from around the world into nine coarse-grain buckets such as Top Stories, Science & Technology, Health, and Sports.

Google provides RSS news feeds for eight broad topic areas, ranging from world and national news to sports and entertainment. News feeds customized to any topic you desire can be created by putting in a search term and then grabbing the RSS feed from the middle-left portion of the Google page.

view the image gallery

view the image gallery

Turning the feeds from something you access within a Web browser into a more useful information flow that comes to you is done by grabbing via Really Simple Syndication. By now, even people who don't use that technology know this is called an RSS feed--an XML stream that can be decoded by an RSS reader.

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