Google Zeitgeist 2010

One of the upsides of being the world’s most popular search engine is that you get a good idea of what the world is paying attention to. Which brings us to the Google Zeitgeist 2010. An aggregation of the billions of searches done at Google over the past year which you can browse to see what it is people were looking for.

The YouTube video Google put together to promote the site is both interesting and stunning as it drives home just how big Google has become in terms of different ways to access and view their database. Check it:

I have to admit that there’s a lot of tools Google offers that I don’t use on a regular basis. Seeing them used in this video piques my curiosity. It’s also a reminder of just how much data Google has on all of us.

In which I am annoyed at being told how to pronounce the year.

I came across the following site during my wanderings today: It’s Twenty-ten, not Two-thousand and ten. It makes the following argument about how we should say the year 2010:

Say the year “1810” out loud. Now say the year “1999” out loud. See a pattern? It’s been easier, faster, and shorter to say years this way for every decade (except for the one that just ended) instead of saying the number the long way. However, many people are carrying the way they said years from last decade over to this decade as a bad habit. If we don’t fix this now, we’ll be stuck saying years the long way for the next 89 years. Don’t let that happen!

On the one hand I agree with the argument that it’s easier, faster, and shorter to say twenty-ten instead of two-thousand and ten. On the other hand I want to use the latter form just to piss off the people who put that website up.

I have no good reason why I should feel animosity at a group that’s pointing out something I actually agree with and doing so probably reveals some deep-seated psychological need to be a contrarian asshole, but I’d be lying if I didn’t say I was annoyed when I read it.

Which is weird because I make similar assertions all the time myself right on my own stupid webpage. So you’d think I’d have no problem with this. All I can conclude from this small episode of illogical irritation is that I must be slowly turning into a Republican.