A search engine is like a vehicle you use to reach certain destinations. In real world you don’t use “any” vehicle or you don’t use your car every time. Destination, type of road, cost, time,… you combine all these components and make a choice before you leave home but when it comes to making a trip in virtual world people don’t think about which “vehicle” they should choose. Let me give you an example:

Suppose you want to make a search about some mathematical concept or a problem. If you make a Google or Yahoo or Bing search they will come up with huge amount of websites. It will be very hard to weed out correct ones. I recommend Wolfram|Alpha for such searches. “Wolfram|Alpha introduces a fundamentally new way to get knowledge and answers – not by searching the web, but by doing dynamic computations based on a vast collection of built-in data, algorithms, and methods.”

As you see it is totally logical to use alternative search engines for different purposes but what are those alternatives? Below are some articles that will help you to find those.

http://mashable.com/2013/02/26/alternative-search-engines/

http://www.howtogeek.com/113513/5-alternative-search-engines-that-respect-your-privacy/

http://www.hongkiat.com/blog/100-alternative-search-engines-you-should-know/

http://www.wall-street.com/top-5-alternative-search-engines-that-arent-google/

Don’t try to memorize all different search engines. Scan these articles quickly to get an idea then whatever your search query is about try to find a keyword in the pages above. If you are new to town and looking for people to meet/find you should use an engine which is focused on “social” relations. Press Ctrl+F and search for the word “social”. You need to find your own “vehicle” according to your habits.

Some of these alternative search engines are totally independent from Google/Yahoo/Bing… They work on their own. Some of them use Google/Yahoo/Bing… but filter the results for you so the results are exactly the ones you look for. Some of them have different interfaces in case you are not feeling comfortable with traditional design.

Personally I use only two search engines; Google and Wolfram|Alpha. Since I’m a mathematics teacher it makes sense to use Wolfram|Alpha. It saves too much time since it also computes and graphs the mathematical expressions. You might wonder the reasons of why I don’t use an alternative for Google. The answer is simple. I find Google reliable and satisfying but most importantly I have completed Power Searching courses. This means when I search the internet I don’t only “Google it”. I personalize my search with filters and operators. Below are my previous articles about Power Searching.