20 tech habits to improve your life

A few new habits can make the difference between staying on task, finding what you need, and getting things done--or having a tech meltdown.

20 tech habits to improve your life prev next

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<h2>19. Master Search Techniques to Pinpoint Files or Web Sites</h2><br><br>Drill down through millions of search results for popular Google search terms by mastering advanced search operators. Enclose phrases and proper names in quotes (as in <b>"Don't tase me bro"</b> or <b>"Michael Phelps"</b>) to get exact-phrase matches. Use the + and - signs to specify meaning, especially for words that have more than one definition (for example, <b>salsa –dance</b>), and use the <b>filetype:</b> operator to find certain kinds of documents (as in <b>budget filetype:xls</b>). <br><br>You can even search for all the ingredients in your fridge with the word <b>recipe</b> to figure out what to have for dinner tonight. <br><br>Then, take your search chops to your desktop, where organizing files in an elaborate folder scheme is no longer necessary. Use Windows Vista's Saved Search folders to build a dynamic store of all the files that contain the term "NYC," for instance, or all the digital photos taken on your birthday. <br><br>Gmail's built-in e-mail search capabilities are also killer. Use the <b>from:, to:</b>, and <b>subject:</b> operators to find specific messages, as in <b>from:"Bill Gates" subject:"dinner date"</b>. <br><br><b>More:</b> [[xref:http://www.pcworld.com/article/140648/advanced_google_search_faster_find_more.html|Advanced Google: Search Faster, Find More|Advanced Google: Search Faster, Find More]]

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