By Peter Suciu

Seek and you shall be rewarded. That’s the old mantra when it comes to search engines — you put in a keyword or phrase, and you get a variety of results. Today search engines can do much more than just help you locate specific Web pages or find directions. Search engines can allow you to scan news articles, view

In addition to familiar favorites, there are some newer functions offered by search engines. While these are called “hidden” or “Easter eggs,” the truth is that some of these just haven’t been as highly publicized, while others are still being developed. Here is a list of some searches that you might not know about.

  • Math and conversions: If the calculations you need to do are a little too complex for the calculator built in to your computer, or your math skills aren’t quite up to the task, fear not. While Google can’t quite handle math like that in A Beautiful Mind, it can tackle some reasonably complex equations. Better still, you can do some handy conversions, such as pounds to kilograms or inches to centimeters. Simply enter in what you need to know, for example, “4+14*78/12=,” and you’ll get the answer (95 if you want to check). Type in “114 inches,” and you’ll find out that it is 2.8956 meters.
  • Weather forecasts: Need to know the weather and want to skip right to it? Type “weather” into Google followed by a city and/or zip code, and you’ll get current weather along with a three-day forecast and direct links to Weather.com, Accuweather.com, and Weather Underground for even more detailed information. Bing offers the same information with links to Foreca, Intellicast, and iMap Weather.
  • Stock quotes: Know the stock ticker symbol for a particular company? If you do, you can type it in to Google and get stock quotes (the usual delays do apply). And if sports is more your stock in trade, you can type in a team name and get the score from the last game and information on the next upcoming game.
  • Patent search: Need to do a patent search? You can do one directly from Google, where you can list a product or even look up patent numbers.