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Part: 1 Search Basics > Search Engines and How They Work

Chapter 1. Search Engines and How They Work

The current state of search engines can be compared to a phone book that is updated irregularly, is biased toward listing more popular information, and has most of the pages ripped out.

—Steve Lawrence and Lee Giles, authors of a widely publicized 1999 study of search engines for the NEC Research Institute

Listening to television news shows and reading the daily paper, you could easily get the impression that the Internet and the World Wide Web hold the answers to virtually any question you could possibly ask. Sign on to your favorite search engine, tap a few keys, and all the world's knowledge is there for the taking. It couldn't be simpler.


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