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Tricks & Tips

Posts Tagged ‘Searching’

Reverse Email Lookup

February 2nd, 2010

Spokeo.com is a reverse lookup for email. It just asks for one thing – the address.  Then, it crawls 40+ social networking sites like Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, etc, to gather all it can about that email address.  Often this includes, a full name, sex, city and state, marital status, and more… wow! (that’s in a good way, and a scary way)

Video: watch a news station’s review

Give it a try now (free): spokeo.com/email

Our Results
We found about 75%+ of the email addresses we tested came back with positive identifying and useful information.  About 25% included photos.  Most results are free.  If you subscribe you get links to the blog posts and Internet search results it finds – which, was even more useful.

Don’t want your dirty laundry out there?
Be careful what you post, or use anonymous accounts when testing new sites.  Use Spokeo on your own email address(s) to find out what might be more public than you desire.


Contributed by:  Brian Clark


What are these random letters I have to type before I can submit a form on a web site?
Maybe you’re signing up for an account, or attempting to contact a company via their web site, and you’re frustrated that you can’t just click ‘Submit’ and be done with it!

Google, Yahoo! and others have been using this kind of barrier for a while now, and while, at times, it may be frustrating, there is a method to their madness.  Its called CAPTCHA, or Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart.  As the name implies, this tests to ensure a real person is filling a form, and not something automated.

Why go through all this trouble?
Without a CAPTCHA, automated programs written by unscrupulous people can automatically fill out a form thousands of times. Google uses it to stop spammers, among others, from signing up for a lot of Gmail accounts to send out ‘anonymous’ spam to other people around the world. Yahoo! employs CAPTCHAs for a similar purpose.

Other individual sites use CAPTCHAs to combat spam that is sent to the site owners through their own contact forms. Using this method, it ensures that their visitors’ emails are not lost in a flood of trash.

CAPTCHA techniques aren’t fail-proof, but they are evolving as fast as attackers find ways to have their automated programs, believe it or not, interpret CAPTCHA images without the aid of a human.
Tips to speed through CAPTCHA

  1. Often there is a refresh button – if you can’t read the letters, click refresh
  2. Be confident and submit anyway – if you’re wrong, it will reprompt you

Comic Relief…


More funnies… (couldn’t resist)

  1. Comic
  2. Comic

Google just added new “Search Options” to help you quickly find exactly what you’re looking for. To enable, click “Show options…” at the top left of any Google search page.

A few examples

  • Narrow results by reviews only
  • Show results only updated in the last 24 hours, or view a timeline
  • Show related topics

Google’s Voice Search makes searching the web simple. Even the most novice user can do this.  The above video is for the iPhone, but Voice Search is available for BlackBerry, Android, and many other web ready cell phones.  After install, speak your search and Google goes to work – easy!  A must have.

Ready? Visit www.google.com/mobile or browse from your phone to install.

Don’t have an Internet phone? You can still dial 1-800-GOOG-411 (learn more) for free 411.

Other search tricks by Google:
Do More with Google
4 Tricks for Your Phone
Other Google Tips

In the news…
The Conficker Worm, that had everyone hyped up today really wasn’t that bad.  If you’re running updates and good anti-virus, protection is already there for most viruses.  However, this privacy invasion looks scary to me (continue reading).


Amazing Search Results

February 17th, 2009


Download www.cooliris.com (free) for amazing, visual search results in Firefox, Internet Explorer, or Safari.

Cooliris takes searching the web to a full screen, almost 3D experience.
Pan through pages of images by moving your mouse.  I just can’t explain this one; you really need to see it for yourself.  Here’s how it works:

  1. After you install Cooliris, search Google or your favorite search site
  2. On Google, click the Images link across the top
  3. Mouse over any photo for a link at the bottom left to load up Cooliris

You can search many other sites, including YouTube, and Hulu to play their videos right inside Coolirs.  Please, check this out when you have time to spare.  🙂

Learn more or get started now:  www.cooliris.com


Your Computer Knows Where You Are

November 13th, 2008

New location-aware services, such as with maps on iPhones or BlackBerry’s, are moving to your computer.  Soon your computer will know where it is physically located and offer services based on this information.

A few examples might include…

  • Loading weather.com to see weather without having to enter city information
  • Finding coffee shops nearby
  • Exact driving directions from your from porch
  • Now, “They Know.”   😉

Right now the technology uses nearby wireless signals, not GPS.  But soon new options will be upon us.  Services will be built in to the next version of Firefox (3.1).  And Microsoft officially stated the next version of Windows will include geo-location tools.

I was skeptical.  So I tried installing pre-release extensions to make my web browser instantly locate me.  I was amazed!  I headed to Google Maps and clicked Current Position.  It zeroed right down on me in the very building I was in.  Google loaded a Street View and Flickr images for the area.  Nice.

Learn more?
You need Firefox + Greasemonkey + Geode:  http://labs.mozilla.com/2008/10/introducing-geode/