From all across this great nation (and Canada), entries arrived in my inbox for Slate's Google Suggest contest. The question at hand: What's the best example of "less intelligent" Google query contrasted with a "more intelligent" Google query?
Sorting through the contenders led to more than a few instances of intellectual whiplash. One moment, I'd be considering a stemwinder such as "Why is it thatonly part of the energy stored in one trophic level is passed on to the next level?" and the next moment, I'd be learning about "cake farts."
Without further descent into fetishes, let's go to the top five.
This entry earned points for subtlety. Just dropping the E in where revealed a dedicated community of Erin Andrews peephole seekers. The name of the unfortunate ESPN sideline reporter does not appear in the "where can" list, which also includes the incredible: "where can I read books online."
|There really isn't much difference between the results here, but I love the idea that Google is smart enough to know that deaf leopard should take us to the promised land of ripped jeans and laser-light displays.|
While technically not a "less intelligent" vs. "more intelligent" entry, "how can I destroy" takes third place for demonstrating the disquieting juxtapositions coughed up by the machine logic of Google Suggest—destroy your jeans or destroy the world. Suggest is like one of your smart, undersocialized friends who blurts relevant yet inappropriate facts at parties.
Consider the jolt received by the new parents who wanted to learn "How to defrost breast milk."