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How do we find things online?

The world wide web is a big place. If you know the web address, or URL, of a site you can go to it by typing the address into the address bar along the top of your browser.

But what if you don’t know the URL?

It is usually possible to find webpages by searching for them with a search engine. These are programs that search an index of the world wide web for keywords and display the results in order.

The results of a search for the term "lunar eclipse" in a web-based image search engine (above)

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Additional reading and resources

Search engines work by crawling hundreds of billions of pages using their own web crawlers. These web crawlers are commonly referred to as search engine bots or spiders. A search engine navigates the web by downloading web pages and following links on these pages to discover new pages that have been made available.

Boolean Operators: