Alternatives to google

Rat-on-Bin-bag-640x461It is the pits when you are forced to admit that while the guy on the corner is the rudest barista you have ever known in your life….he makes the best coffee in town! In a similar way most people don’t really like using google because they sift through everything you do – a bit like a rat in a wheelie bin really – but they do offer the best search results.

Yosemite’s new version of Safari offers you a number of alternatives to google and so I thought I’d try them out.

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The most often talked about google alternative seems to be DuckDuckGo and so this was my first choice and it didn’t take long to realise that as a search engine it sucks!

The interface is clean enough and the results, such as they are, come quickly but even with region turned on it didn’t find what I needed. In all the tests I searched for macservices (obviously) and using DuckDuckGo all I got were American sites.

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I got a similar response using Microsoft’s mighty search engine Bing but this wasn’t a surprise because they have never been very good.

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The Yahoo search engine did much better but they are a bit like google so while I got what I was looking for my privacy was still being hung out to dry.

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Sadly with google, just like the rude barista, I got the goods but at a price.

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Happily there is an alternative but unfortunately it isn’t baked into Safari’s preferences the same way these other search engines are. But if you are prepared to go to install a little add-on to Safari you can have your google cake and eat it too.

The site is called StartPage and it performs the google search for you, gives you the right answers, but hides your identity.

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Now, I am off to find a friendly tea house and I might use StartPage to find it for me.

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