[go to the heavy search engines
page] [go to
the light search engine page]
An introduction to web-searching
I see it coming... in a few years (actually already now, even if most zombies
not yet realized it) one of the most important jobs will be, of course, websearcher.
(Websearching, the sublime art)
We'll have many specialized branches: web-searchers, web-stalkers, web-seekers and so on. Zen and 'feeling' as
well as a very broad 'global' knwoledge will be required.
It's a good anthidot to the hyperspecialisation that has nearly brought the whole
silly commercial oriented society we are compelled to live in into a well deserved
dead end: only large-minded, capable searchers will be able to keep the 'larger'
over-perspective, and will be able to
find ANYTHING they need (for free, of course), from Vivaldi's Concerto n.7 in F for four
violins and cello
(it's on the Web) through the second edition of the Police Criminelle, Technique
et Tactique (it's on the Web) to A Western Australian survival kit for writing English (it's
on the Web).
For the first time in the history of humanity it DOES NOT MATTER ANYMORE (for knowledge purposes)
if you are located in a big rich city with huge
libraries and universities or if you happen
to live in the middle of nowhere or in a very poor country!
EVERYTHING is on the Web for free! I mean: any book, any newspaper, any university
paper and any image, moreover (soon)
any sound, any
This means that (albeit amidst
mountains of useless garbage) ALL KNOWLEDGE is on the Web, for free,
for you to discover and enjoy!
If you don't believe it, just learn how to search!
good searcher is the kind of guy that can gather
in a couple of hours all
the material you need to write that nasty University Paper it would have took you
at least three
months to complete!
- A good searcher is the kind of guy that -given half a dozen computers and stable
internet access- can solve any librarian problem for any (and wherever located!)
middle sized town!
- A good searcher is the kind of guy YOU will need very oft and very badly -that is,
unless you learn the sublime art of searching yourself... and that's the purpose of this section of
my site: a small contribution to the next generation of wizard searchers :-)
You'll gain here knowledge that is very 'handy', as you will see, and
that you will not easily
find elsewhere, even if
I have noticed that many "universities zombies" have already begonnen to use (not to
spread, to use, a subtle yet significant difference :-) the
techniques that we have invented and published on this site, giving very
seldom -how characteristic of university "habitat" and mentality!- any sign of
recognition of our work :-(
Anyway, I'm sure that the importance of this section
will be more and more clear with the development of the Web (or at least of the
'sound' and neither commercialized nor brainwashed part of it :-)
This is a 'living' workshop, of course, that will florish gathering
more and more additions from all the
great wizard searchers among my readers (and beyond, since "real" wizard searchers will
obviously find this section all by themselves :-)
Hope to hear from you,
and to receive contributions, from many searchers. Remember: the whole thing works
only if we build on the shoulders of others and if others build on our ones... if you
just leech, you loose and we loose! (that's incidentally the reason I have started with my last lesson to
produce 'light' public versions and 'heavy' versions for contributors :-(
Robin Hood... Surreal5... Cassandra... you lazy scoundrels... where are your promised
next lessons and essays?
Fravia's own lessons
lesson_5 ~ General
use of agora, http:// retrieving ~ July 1996 ~ complete
lesson_6 ~ Ftping
files, agora queries and emailing altavista ~ December 1996 ~ complete
W3gate, search spiders, error messages and evaluation of results ~ March 1997 ~ complete
lesson_8 ~ Advanced
searching techniques (combing
and klebing) ~ November 1997 ~ complete
lesson_9 ~ Searching effectively ~
Site monitoring ~ January 1998 ~ complete
Let the bots search for you ~ and build your own search-bots :-) ~ June 1998 ~ 'light'
Robin Hood's lessons
Well, from the dark webwoods of Sherwood, all of a sudden, Robin Hood has
sent me three 'promising'
how to search lessons that you should by all means read (and head).
I'm very happy that good
searchers start to contribute to this section, and hope that many other searchers and
stalkers will add their own findings.
In fact effectively web searching means to
master techniques that are far from obvious and that anyone
seriously intentioned in reversing should master. So I'm very happy to host here these
"how to search" lessons and stratagems by Robin hood.
In fact, believe it or not, on
the Web ther are some 'rangers' like in Tollkien's books, people that are neither
proper hackers nor crackers,
but that know how to fetch what they want, if needs be. Robin Hood seems to be
one of them and I'm glad that he decided to start helping us.
Well, Surreal5's lessons (and his introduction) that you'll find
"here", are IMO more important
for the approaches and the techniques they deal with than for their
specific subjects (basically how to find warez).
Nevertheless, since warez ARE on the web (much too much, IMO) why shouldn't you
learn how to find them?
This is what Surreal5 wrote:
I've tried to organise this (provisorial) essay so, that both beginners and
advanced users can get something out of each lesson, and can almost
directly use it. Even if you are already an expert on how to find the
example types i used, you may get something out of it, a different
perspective, something you hadn't thought of. I like Robin Hoods tutorial,
he has a broader experience than i do, but i feel my lessons give faster
results, with less effort spent on learning boolean ,and other tool
specifics. Consider this a crash course if you will. Consider it a
preliminary to Robin Hoods tutorial. Consider it an alternative view from a
lazy guy who wants results fast ;)Methodolgically ('Nethodologically'? :-)
Surreal5's documents are
very important essays. I have tried myself some of his tips... for instance,
if you need
to navigate and find goodies inside huge 'messy' sites (like mine :-)
you just add/update the relevant starting urls to a couple of quick
(and reliable) search engines and
let their robots do all the work for you! Alternatively, I may add, I found the
service of those little search robots like the freefind or
wired-worker's bots quite useful for searching
purpose on sites that don't even need to know you have indicized them completely :-)
Cassandra's search engines
No good 'how to search' section would make any sense without some good
'homemade' search engines... of course you can always learn how to use better the
main ones, for instance on my own search engines pages, yet
there is another interesting solution by Cassandra, here it is:
Here you have Cassandra's stalker
and here you have Cassandra's fetcher
They are still in a experimental phase, so bear with us
and let's hope that cassandra will send some updates
This is what Cassandra wrote to me:
I have divided my work in two parts : the Fetcher and the Stalker.
The Fetcher provides an easy-to-use access to various search engines:
Altavista, Yahoo, HotBot, Lycos, Infoseek, webcrawler, Dogpile, FTP
search, ASK SINA (an ftpsearch-like with a database containing records of
germany sites, mostly), Northern Light Search (recommanded by US army,
although it's not supposed to mean anything), Goto (formerly WWW Worm).
The stalker provides gateways to finger and whois, along with the 'dejanews
search filter' without all the ugly grafix. It's not really developped, for
stalking matter is related to the country your prey lives in.
btw, Fetcher uses frames (yes, frames!), but in a clever way : you'r never
jailed in a small portion of your browser window. If used sparingly, frames
can be useful.
Of couse, each one might grow with engines or stalking services. But i'll
develop it only if you or someone else you could give it to is interested
and find it worth growing.Well, I hope that this 'search engines' form
approach will be developed too. I'm sure my readers will immediately
understand the practicality and the convenience of having
some single, well tuned, search engine forms, without having to use the
awful commercial entrances, delayed by all the crap advertisement they put on
(as if they would not gather enough money and power just LOOKING at what
people search :-(
Other essays and tools
Essays, tools and papers about search-related matters
new_0101.htm: How to search: The phf exploit
27 April 1998
Fravia's copy of G.E.Boyd's E-Mail Servers Listing
June 1998, updated July 1999
unvaluable list, if you know or learn how to use these beasts. Boyd is a (the :-) famous
Added in July 1999:
The importance of Accmail, by fravia+
kmart_s1.htm: More searching tips (Advanced searching)
23 December 1998
Advanced tips for advanced searchers, if you use these search techniques you can find yourself getting
quite a bit of class A, quality info
search engines - heavy ~
search engines - light ~
Is reverse engineering legal?
Fravia 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999. All rights