Thanks for stopping by! If you like what you read, tell your friends! If you don't like what you read, tell your enemies! Either way, please post a comment, even if it's just to tell us how much we suck! (We're really needy!) You can even follow us @JasonBerner! Or don't! See if we care!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Questionable Results

As anyone who has ever googled knows, when you Google something, the search engine attempts to figure out what you want even before you finish typing in the search bar.  Presumably, the results Google suggests are based on the popularity of search terms; thus, if you type in the letter 'a,' Google promptly suggests "Amazon" (and no doubt receives a comparatively hefty royalty on anything purchased after a subsequent click).

Since Google is the go-to source for the answers to any question one could think of, I was curious to see what popular questions people were asking.  I typed each of the six "reporter's questions"--who, what where, when, how, and why--into the search bar.  Following are the "results," i.e., the first complete "question" that popped up after I typed the question-word and hit the space bar:

Who framed Roger Rabbit?

What is my IP?

Where is Chuck Norris?

When is Mother's Day?  (NOTE: The first result that actually came up was "When I was your man," the title of a Bruno Mars' song.)

How to tie a tie.  (NOTE: The top result was actually "How I Met Your Mother," which I assumed was a reference to the TV show, until I clicked and found a truly disturbing story about Sergey Brin and MOS, which I refuse to share here.)

Why is the sky blue?

So what can we conclude from this list?  Well, a number of people seem concerned about technical issues (What is my IP?).  A number of others are probably 12 years old (the ones who want to know why the sky is blue and how to tie a tie--perhaps to wear when they visit Mom on Mother's Day--which we helpfully learn was May 11th--and why is THAT still the most popular "When" question, eight months after the fact?).

I have no idea why the number-one "Who" question is a reference to a twenty-five-year-old movie, nor why people fret over the whereabouts of Chuck Norris, but the ultimate takeaway from this experiment is that the interwebs remain a strange, strange place, only slightly redeemed by the fact that the second most popular "Why" question is the eminently sensible, "Why do cats purr?"

No comments:

Post a Comment