Introduction to Computing


Exercise 2: Internet basics, browsers and WWW search

Understanding assignment instructions

Task 1: Learn the efficient use of browsers

Familiarize yourself with the browsers that are installed in the classroom Firefox, Chrome and Internet Explorer. The Metropolia Helpdesk recommends Firefox as a safe browser choice. By opening the Location drop-down list, see what pages have recently been visited by this workstation. Try Home and Back buttons.

Email use

Open your browser (Firefox, Chrome or Internet Explorer in the school, you could try Safari, or Opera at home). Connect to or to access your mailbox. Learn to customize your user interface. Make sure you are able to send and open file attachments. In case of doubt, practice with a classmate.
You can change your sender information in Webmail from "preferences" > "Edit your email (From:)address".

Task 2: Find out about search engines

Explanation, background information

Internet has a number of search facilities and directories that help you find information. The search engines operate on different principles: some have their own indeces, and some call others (they are called metacrawlers) like DogPile and WebCrawler. Search logics are either AND or OR, depending on the settings of the engine. Advanced search lets you specify the logic yourself.

To do:

Study the Help section of at least one search engine (there are some links below) to find out how it works. Does it use AND or OR as default? You are able to see with Google suggest feature what are common search words. Lots of current information about international search engines can be found on Search engine watch. By the way, why is there a picture of a spider on this page?

Typical search conditions are given as follows:

List of popular search engines for keyword searches Google has many country specific sites, you could compare! Microsoft has many country specific sites like
and a new search engine, a different kind of search facility.

Classified directories the open Web encyclopedia, comes in many languages the predecessor of wikipedia

Task 3: Comparison of search facilities

Deliverable: A report on search results as a PowerPoint presentation (next assignment).

In this exercise you learn to find information from the Internet, and report it as a PowerPoint presentation. Collect the information into a OneNote Notebook or a Word file. Open OneNote from the Office menu, create a new Notebook, Section for this task. Store all information in the notebook, including images, links, text and videos. Save the document and keep it for further reference. You can work individually or with a fellow student.

To do:

Wikipedia is a new and valuable source of information. It is maintained by volunteers, thus the contents could change at any moment. Make a small research comparing wikipedia information with other sources on the Web. Note, that many abbreviations and terms have several meanings, but in this exercise, stick to IT related information. Select one topic from the list below, and find the wikipedia explanation. Then, do a search using Google or some other search engine of your choice, and evaluate the wikipedia information with these findigs (at least two other sites). What risks are included when relying on one source only, such as wikipedia?

Choose one of the following topics for your research:

The procedure:

Advice on assessing information on the internet. A blog on why wikipedia is not a source for academic work.


Created by: Jaana Holvikivi
Updated: 14.8.2013