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Also, I know from considerable experience that the plus operator had a distinct meaning from the quotes operator so this change definitely implies that Google queries will be less fine-grained no matter what quotes means now.

Yes, Google is worse and worse for anything technical.

Alternatives anyone?

DuckDuckGo, (http://duckduckgo.com/) especially with the !bang syntax.

Not an alternative, but BlindSearch (http://blindsearch.fejus.com/) is interesting.

If you want something more fine-grained, blekko claims to filter results by category. e.g. "select /programming" https://blekko.com/ws/select+/programming will return results for "select" in the "programming" category.

bing, perhaps?

I intend to give it a shot. Seems there's some reasonably powerful query syntax: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff795667.aspx.

My complaint about Bing for technical querying is that when I tell them I want an exact phrase by wrapping it with quotes, it doesn't always believe me that I really do want that phrase to appear in the result page.

Some of those other operators look promising, though. I'll have to try them out.

The "near:" operator looks very useful.


Bing, DDG and Blekko IMO; naturally Bing have the largest index of the 3.

Someone needs to write a Firefox Add-on that automatically quotes your Google search terms (unless you are quoting a phrase).

Here's a Greasemonkey script: http://userscripts.org/scripts/show/116080

It doesn't work with Google Instant enabled.

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