Hoppo Bumpo (n): A children's game. Played by folding one's arms and hopping on one leg. Aim is to bump opponents, so that they lose their balance. Last person standing wins.

May 19, 2010

Embellishing your craft searches with Google

I love the idea of trademarked name becoming a verb. Take Hoovering the carpet. Or Xeroxing a copy. Or Cadbury-Dairy-Milk-Chocolating a bad day. (Okay, maybe that one is not common venacular, but its is most certainly common practice.)

Then of course there is the most universal: don't worry, I'll Google it.

Google [verb]
Googled [past participle]
Googling [present participle]

Have you ever wondered whether you can conjugate Google? According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the answer is yes. Google is the real deal - a recognised verb. And I have heard my mum talk about Googling. So that seals it.

But enough of conjugation - I have chanced* upon something far more exciting. Did you know that the Google search engine has its own secret language? Special stuff you can add to refine your searches - its magic.

* I mean "chanced" in the sense of following a comment left on my blog by someone called Generic Viagra. Its a long story. And possibly not easily explained. So I think I should stop now.


Use define: to search for definitions of the words listed after it it. For example if you Google ...

define:stitch in the ditch

... you will receive definitions for "stitch in the ditch" sourced from various websites. Each version is referenced back to the original source.


Combine link: with a webpage address and you will see a list of webpages that have links to the specified webpage. For example if I wanted to see who links to Hoppo Bumpo I would Google ...



Combine related: with a webpage address and you will see a list of webpages that Google identifies as being similar to the page you have specified. For example, if you Google ...


... the search will return a list of websites related to sewing patterns.

Combine info: with a webpage address and Google will return some background information about the page. The information is usually about 23 words.

filetype:file type
Combine filetype: with a file extension, such as PDF or PPT to locate specific file types. For example if I Google ...
filetype:PDF "pressing ham"

... the search will return an excellent list of PDF documents that mention pressing hams.


Adding site: to a search restricts the results to those websites in the domain you have added. For example if you Google ...

garbage site:hoppobumpo.blogspot.com

... the results will show all posts on Hoppo Bumpo refering to garbage (as opposed to showing all the posts that are garbage ... which would retrieve my blog in its entirety)


Using this modifier ensures that only webpage titles are seached for the keyword or words you specify. The text within pages is not searched. For example, if you Google ...

allintitle:pattern alterations

... the results will show only pages that have the words pattern and alterations in the title. None of the page text will be searched. Allintitle cannot be combined with other search criteria.


This works like the allintitle modifier, but you can can combine it with other search criteria. For example if you Google ...

intitle:pattern alterations

.... the results will show all pages that have the word pattern in the page title and the word alterations somewhere in the text of the webpages.


Using this modifier ensures that only URLs are seached for the word or words you specify. There's no search of the webpage text. For example, if you Google ...

intitle:dress pattern

... the results will only contain websites with both the words dress and pattern in the URL.


This works like the allinurl modifier, but you can can combine it with other search criteria. For example if you Google ...

intitle:dress pattern

... the results will contain websites with the word dress in the URL and the word pattern somewhere in the text of the page.


  1. I love this, Liesl! I'm all about becoming a master Googler :)

  2. Oh. so much stuff I really didn't have the faintest idea about. Well, actually - I knew about it, enough to know I knew nothing about it. This is like Cliff's notes to Google. Thanks so much.
    {I don't need to make sure you know what Cliff's Notes means, cause you can just Google it if you need to. Can't you!}

  3. this is fabulous ~ incredibly useful! thanks for sharing Liesl.

  4. This is fabulous information. Thank you!!

  5. I really don't think your blog would come up as 'garbage'. Don't know where you find all your info, or all the time to find your info, but since I'm having a day off I'm off to play Google.

  6. This is so cool! Thanks for sharing!

  7. This is fantastic! Thanks so much. I had no idea about any of this.

  8. Ok now how does one nearly half a century old person remember all this? I might copy it, paste it and/or print it !

  9. Wow, I didn't know any of this either! Thanks so much Liesl - very useful! Must thank Generic Viagra....

  10. Most helpful...
    I never realized it was a different language...
    now my searches might actually work...

  11. YOu are the Google master!! A font of useful tips. I'll be bookmarking this post!

  12. You are just the very best sewing geek! x

  13. Really useful Liesl! Heaps of great information, thanks!

  14. "I'll just Google it" is my catchprase around here. In fact, I was just wondering last week what I ever did before Google? I mean, I think I used to just wonder about stuff! Imagine that! Thanks for the handy tips :)

  15. Excellent info Liesl. Even my 7 year old said the other day "I'll just google it mum" I mean what ever happened to looking it up in the World Book Encyclopedia!

  16. Some great tips here, thanks Liesl. A couple of others I have found useful over the years are: "convert" i.e. convert 15cm to inches and it gives you the answer, good for quilting. Works for weights from g/kg to pounds/ounces etc for cooking. And the other is "translate" i.e. translate "phrase" to english and it does a pretty good job for most things

  17. Wow you leave the '... for dummies' books for dead - er I don't mean you're a dummy. This post is a definite for bookmarking...I wonder if in the future we'll 'hoppobumpo' it?

  18. I don't often leave comments places, but I wanted to share - Google is a verb in other languages too - at least Dutch. It's always funny when english words are absorbed, but "googlen" is just too funny for words - and in past tense it becomes "gegoogled" :)

  19. Thanks for the Google master class! I'm off to have a play NOW!

  20. Oh my god! You're a Google expert too? Is there any field your expertise does not extend to? I think you are part of some higher universe sent down to 'play' with us little people......

  21. Ah, very cool. I knew about a few of those - but not all. And now I do, thanks!!

  22. this info is SO GOOD! Thanks Liesl!

    P.S. It was almost a year ago you wrote a post about your dry hands... hope this os not happening again. WATER lovely and lots of it!

  23. That is awesome. What great tips, thank you!

  24. I knew there was a more effective way to use google but I had no idea where to start (other than googling it hehehe).Thanks for sharing! I'll be bookmarking this post for future reference.

  25. You're a helper Ms HB. You forgot to add a link for Let Me Google That For You http://lmgtfy.com/, which is my very favourite.

    Anyway, I think you are the googliest!

  26. That's amazing, I'd never noticed that I can use Google in this way berfore reading your post. formal dresses


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