Archive for February 18th, 2012

Extensions… ex tension

| February 18, 2012 | 0 Comments 

A few times recently at conferences or on training days we’ve referred to ways of making an internet search more accurate and on target. The big one is to Banish tension by using extensions.

One of the best ways to search for a file is to add the file extension, or file type, you are looking for. All file extensions are preceded by a dot (or full stop) and tell the computer which program or programs are to be used to open that kind of file.

This can be useful when looking up movie files, images, sounds, and many other formats.

For example, if you are doing your science planning and are about to spend hours making a PowerPoint presentation about the parts of a plant, save your time. Search for some inspiration, and maybe even a starter for ten.

Try a search for “parts of a plant” and you will come up with hundreds of results. Maybe even millions.

However, now add “.ppt” (one of the file extensions for PowerPoint) and you will find many, and, some of them, very good, presentations about plants and their anatomy. Also use “.pps”

Below are just some of the main “file extension” labels you might find useful in narrowing down a search.

If you are looking for an audio clip, try the name you want (e.g. dog barking, or the name of a TV theme) and one of these extension.

For film, use one of the extensions below:

Searching for .doc files could mean you don’t have to write that policy on your own. Find pictures easily too:

Flash files e.g. whiteboard activities, and pdfs for different forms of document.

There are many other file extensions, but these might get you going to begin with. Do let us know of any obvious (or less obvious) ones we’ve missed. May this save you some time and make searching more fruitful. You’ll need to consider copyright and fair use but…

Happy hunting!