I'm looking for a web search engine that can distinguish strings that differ only in case. As an example, "GaP", "gap", and "GAP" should be treated like different strings, the way most search engines would agree "apg" is a different string from all three. As far as I could find, there is no search operator for this in Google Search, Bing, DuckDuckGo, Ecosia, or Mojeek...

Is there any search engine or search operator within a search engine that would enable this?

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    Have you considered using - with Google, at least - some of the advanced search features, such as exclusion (for example, if you're not interested in Gallium Phosphide, you might do better by searching gap -gallium)? The broader your search term is, the more likely it is to generate irrelevant results. Commented Apr 15 at 14:11
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    @JeffZeitlin Actually, in this specific case, I was interested in gallium phosphide and the biggest problem is "gap", because that word often comes up in semiconductors. I ended up searching for "gallium phosphide" and getting mostly correct results, but not all authors write out the full name, so I probably missed some useful articles. I'm asking this question because this situation where case makes a big difference is common, for example with the myriad acronyms made to spell a word, and the workarounds don't always work well.
    – Kotlopou
    Commented Apr 15 at 19:39
  • The point I was trying to make stands: narrow down your search terms, either by mandating the appearance of certain terms (put them in quotes, in Google - gap "gallium"), or by explicitly excluding terms that absolutely indicate invalid results (with the leading hyphen, in Google - gap -retail -clothing). You can also use partial words for matching in most search engines, e.g., phos as a keyword would cover phosphate, phosphide, phosphorous, and so on. The trick is to narrow your search by including related relevant terms and excluding related irrelevant terms. Commented Apr 16 at 10:43
  • My point stands as well: this should not require tricks. I am looking for a search engine that can search for a string without ignoring case as an alternative solution for situations where the tricks don't work. I used this example to specify intended behaviour, not as the specific problem I want solved. That said, I still don't know how I would distinguish between "GaP" and "energy gap" without throwing away legitimate results that hapen to mention the energy gap of GaP and not spell out "gallium phosphide". (The behaviour is the same between Google Search and Google Scholar.)
    – Kotlopou
    Commented Apr 16 at 11:48
  • Search engines can't read your mind, and they don't know the meaning of what they're searching for you; they're just matching patterns. "Fine-tuning" your search using inclusives and exclusives isn't a "trick"; it's the intended operation of the search engines in question. You can get better results without providing narrowing terms if you use a search engine that's specific to the field of study/industry/whatever that you're interested in - but for any given field, such an engine may or may not exist, and may not be as complete, even within the subject, as a general engine like Google. Commented Apr 16 at 11:58

1 Answer 1


Google has a "verbatim" search filter, try that together with quotation marks.

THe verbatim search filter shows up on a result "Pages Products Images Videos... Filter / All results".

Unfortunately, Google Search's "verbatim" option is not completely case-insensitive. Searching for "Cat" and "cat" will likely yield the same results.

Exceptions: There are situations where case sensitivity still plays a role:
Proper Nouns: Google might distinguish between proper nouns, even with the verbatim option. For example, a search for "Apple" (the company) might be different from "apple" (the fruit).
Acronyms: Verbatim searches on acronyms can be case-sensitive (e.g., "NASA" vs "nasa").
Programming Terms: Programming languages and syntax often rely on case sensitivity, so verbatim searches in this context might treat capitalization as important.

Use Quotation Marks: Enclosing your search terms in quotation marks ( "search phrase" ) gives you more precise control and usually ensures Google treats your query as case-sensitive.

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