Meta Search Engines
These gather results from a variety of other engines and directories simultaneously. Useful if you want to combine results from several sources. Most commonly used are Metacrawler, Dogpile, Mamma. For serious research, try Copernic (http://www.copernic.com) which has the capacity to query literally hundreds of search engines, directories, Usenet discussions, shops and e-mail databases all at once.
How to get the best results from a search engine:
Try to imagine the exact phrase that you would expect to see on the kind of page you're looking for. Remember that some products and services are referred to with different terms in different parts of the world - eg. 'grass' when used in the context of sporting activities, such as soccer grass, is more commonly referred to as 'turf' in some countries such as the USA. Another example is the word 'solicitor' which most UK people would use whereas their US counterparts would say 'lawyer'.
Many search engines carry additional options to help you refine and improve your search results - eg. Advanced Search and Preferences options. These areas are well worth investigating and trying out. You can also download a Toolbar from a search engine such as Google - http://toolbar.google.com - where Google's advanced features are closer to hand. One word of caution, however, is not to get carried away and download too many free Toolbars as they can create instability problems in computers. The general rule, as with most things on the Internet, is to keep things simple and only use what you need.
Searching for a new, cool or unusual website:
Cool Site of the day