Sure, Google's great, but are you using some of its better tricks?
My personal favorite specifies that search results will come only from a particular web site or domain. This is key for searching complicated web sites, like usgs.gov or colorado.edu. Use the search operator "site:" like this [tule lake data site:usgs.gov]. Or restrict your search to only .edu or .gov domains: [arsenic groundwater site:.edu].
For quick calculations, enter the conversion into Google's search box like this [11 in in cm].
The unit conversion idea works for mathematical equations too [2+2=]
Waiting for lab supplies? Enter the UPS, FedEx, or USPS tracking number directly into the Google search box. It will take you straight to the package tracking info.