How to quickly find direct dial phone numbers into companies lacking open dial-by-name corporate voicemail systems

Interesting thread on the Boolean Strings LinkedIn group started a week ago, with Trish Wyderka asking how to get direct dial numbers into Google since their main numbers tend to go to a generic voicemail with no dial-by-name system (which phone sourcing guru Maureen Sharib verified in a subsequent comment).

The others answers commenting on the post were just showing main #’s for each Google office around the US and beyond, which can be useful for other purposes, but here is an easy online way to get some of the direct dial numbers into Google NYC that were desired (or their Mountain View HQ, for that matter).  Using Maureen’s phone methods would obviously get you many more results, and exactly who you want, but with much more effort.

The key clue to an easy solution is the phone prefix (the first 3 digits following area code).  For a large company location, they typically own most/all the numbers for that prefix. So Googling  “212-565” -“0000” (note the minus sign immediate preceding the last quoted term to omit the many web references to the main #) will find you lots of lovely results like http://people.csail.mit.edu/mirrokni/Welcome.html and http://code.google.com/p/testability-explorer/issues/detail?id=26 and, of course, you can add more NOT terms to the end of your string to get rid of other undesirable results that keep repeating.

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