Searching is an art-form, it's also scientific by nature when performed to gain the closest results.
Take for example the Battle of Jutland and someone wanting to find out about one of the casualties. Granted with the power of w.w.w. the world might be your 'oyster'. Note the 'might be'. Unfortunately the largest set of on-line databases has hogged much of the materials or so they'd like you to think.
You'd think that with such an unusual surname searching would have few problems. Yet, there were a number of casualties with the surname VARNELL.
This is where the US databases lose out to one of the larger English ones.
There you can search the 1939 register, which is a treasure trove of information.
60 New Road , Portsmouth - home to Arthur and his wife Emily,
Unfortunately, the thread I was reading elsewhere showed folk going on a proverbial 'wild goose chase'.
Some of their findings were comical. Guess they didn't look carefully enough or put much reasoning into their searches.