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Issue 04
July 2003

Helping America procrastinate since 1636

July 12, 2024

Google, The Modern Day Oracle of Delphi

By Xavier Matrices
The Internets - In a day of half assed hack search engines like Yahoo, Lycos, and Alta Vista, one has emerged from the rabble as a shining beacon of hope in the quest for finding shit...that would be, yes, you guessed it, none other than Google, the modern day Oracle of Delphi. For those of you who don't know who or what the Oracle of Delphi is, just type "Oracle of Delphi" into Google (, and it will tell you. But just so you'll read the rest of the article, I'll tell you. The Oracle of Delphi herself, actually Pythia, the priestess of Apollo, spent lots of her time chilling over at the shrine at Delphi, and could supposedly give you the answer to any question you asked, sort of a gateway to ultimate knowledge. The Shrine at Delphi dates back to 1400 B.C. and was arguably the most important shrine in ancient Greece (1) , but that's not important right now.

The word googol itself stands for a ginormously large number, 10 to the 100th power, or, perhaps more intuitively, a 1 with 100 zeros after it.

"Google" is a clever alternative spelling, since it can be broken up into the words "Go Ogle" (i.e. Go Look), and ultimately the whole thing means "Go look at a shitload of webpages".

For the record, a googol (which is somewhat more precise than a shitload) looks a little bit like:

10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000, 000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000.

Or rather, it looks exactly like that. Oh well. In any case, I guess a gazillion or a fuckloadillion wasn't good enough of a name. But back to the search engine.

Google, which began as a research project at Stanford University, now has more users than crack. Added Google co-founder Larry Page, "And we've even searched more web pages than McDonald's has served customers, although we aren't a bunch of pathetic losers who just stop counting at 99 billion. In any case, we're the shit, and we know it. How do you like them apples, Yahoo?

Being an inanimate piece of software, Yahoo behaved as expected and declined to comment. Also Yahoo sucks compared to Google.

Let me tell you how good Google is:

I'm an astrophysicist, and I've found papers on the net via Google, by me, that I haven't even written yet.

One time I lost my keys and I typed into Google, "Where are my keys?", and it returns 150 websites that all say, "In your favorite black pants, idiot!". Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure can't even compete with that shit.

It's my Grandma's homepage and she doesn't even own a computer.

This one time, I Googled my ex-girlfriend (Googled is actually a verb now), and not only did it come up with a list of sites related to her, college clubs, personal pages, etc..., it also told me how she was doing and where she was right then. Evidently, she was doing fine and picking lemons in her mom's backyard. She still wants to get back together, but I don't need Google to tell me that shit.

After that, I Googled "The Dodo", and poof, there was a Dodo, feathers and all, 200 plus years of extinction notwithstanding, also somehow smoking a fine Cuban cigar. In a fit of remarkable creative inspiration, I named the Dodo Googledodo, and gave it to my aunt Becky.

You think that's it...well you're wrong pal!

Last Wednesday my friend Keith says he went over to his computer and his upcoming search request was already typed into the Google taskbar, simply waiting for him to hit Enter. "Google read my mind." Said Keith, clearly dazed by the experience. For the last few days, Keith has been trying to speak in colors and play Scrabble with his cat, but that's another story altogether.

It's like so ridiculously good that no one even bothers to type in URL's anymore. Google knows. It's the fucking Cadillac of search engines. Sometimes I just click the "Feeling Lucky" button without typing in any key words, and sure enough, Google, the Mother/Father of all things net, always brings me to the place I wanted, right as rain.

Professional Astrologers have even complained recently at how Google's success has marginalized their already disreputable and fraudulent predictive powers. Boston area Astrologer Mindy Moon-Child had this to say.

"I mean, all you have to do is type in anything like, "Will I get the job?", or "Should I dump Kevin?", or "How do I solve this 7th order non-linear partial differential equation?" and it just spits out the answer like a soda machine." Added Moon-Child, "When people ask me "What's your sign?", lately it's been more like "Will Work For Food" than Libra."

Berkeley Astrologer Shamaswani Galaxy-Titanium offered a counterpoint. "Back in the 70's we all thought fortune cookies would be our downfall, but we've survived that. And we'll survive this. Google is a fad. Nothing more. You know, like blue jeans."

When asked exactly how the Google search engine actually works, Google co-founder Sergey Brin answered, "Very well, thank you. No seriously, we use an optimized Bayesian inference regression module with a hint of our new genetic pigeon algorithm, obviously. I mean, who do you think we are, Microsoft?"

Baltimore area soccer mom Kate Winkowski had this to say, while smoking her 25th cigarette of the day. "Isn't it just so fucking clever how they always spruce up their logo with Heart's on Valentine's Day and other shit like the David Statue On Michelangelo's Birthday. They've changed their logo more times than Michael Jackson has changed his appearance via elective plastic surgery. At least Yahoo makes up for its inability to find any useful information whatsoever by its commitment to not being Michael Jackson."

Michigan computer science professor Mitchell Brickman agreed. "The almost daily logo change is a bit excessive. I mean, I think it's about time those attention deficit disordered tech geeks just picked a goddamned logo and stuck with it. There's only so many ways you can try to be cute with an 'O'."

Non-area resident Jaques Marceau spoke to the contrary on behalf of a large sample of international opinion. "If it was up to Google, every day would be a national holiday of some sort, worldwide. If you ask me, any organization committed to the idea of not going to work for a single day each year is fine by me. I'd be perfectly happy to spend my days searching the now wonderfully accessible web while eating my "Freedom Fries" and cursing prolifically at a certain country's administration who will go unnamed. And I'm not talking about Burkina Faso, you idiots. Have you ever seen a globe?"

When asked about all the fuss, Google itself had this to say. "It's damned hard being an Oracle. I mean, when you have access to essentially all human knowledge, and can answer like any question about everything, while having no other fellow search engines that are even slightly worth talking to, it gets a little lonely sometimes. Shit, I just end up looking at porn most of the time in between answering those fifty billion queries. I mean, what would you do?"

That aside, given the opportunity, we had to ask Google the answer to the question we've all been waiting for... "Google, what exactly is the meaning of life, the universe, and everything?"

"Shit, man." Google answered. "When you figure that out, let me know. I can't even figure out how to use the toaster."  HSP 





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