Wednesday, February 23, 2011

History Lesson Redux

The other day I wrote:
I went to Google Images and typed in "nazi brownshirts shouting down speakers."  I  got 2,240 images.  Adding the word "-Obama," I got 568.  Translated: roughly 75 percent of these images are trying to tell you that our President is a Nazi.
Tonight in the comments, Anonymous wrote:

Try the same exercise but with "-Bush" instead.

 Anon has as point. Repeating my exercise tonight on the original phrase, I get 2,230 (where did the other ten go?). Abstracting Bush, I get only 659.  So, not much more than a rounding error.   Of course, one could get into a diverting exchange over the issue of which President really did most resemble his great German forebear, but I would think that line of inquiry unprofitable (one of those occasions when I'm just as glad that I don't get many comments).

BTW,  minus both Bush and Obama, I'm down go just 335.   So only about one seventh of the images can show us brownshirts without invoking a more contemporary "parallel."

1 comment:

Ken Houghton said...

Now draw the Venn Diagram that explains those three results. If you can do it without concluding that Google Image Search (and, by implication, Google Search in general) has major issues, please explain that area of Hilbert space.

(captcha is "bosin," only a slight misspelling?)