School’s out Friday

Did you notice the date? If you didn’t, and you happened to stumble over the above video contained on this page, then I think you might be attempting to compose your mail in a very kinesthetic way by now. You might also be wondering how they managed to collate a top 5 list of viral YouTube pictures from 2011.

Google have been up to their April Fool’s day tricks again, something they are noted for. Here’s my favourite from this year’s batch;

Here’s the job description, as outlined on one of Google’s job pages;

The role: Autocompleter

Are you passionate about helping people? Are you intuitive? Do you often feel like you know what your friends and family are thinking and can finish their thoughts before they can? Are you an incredibly fast Google searcher? Like, so fast that you can do 20 searches before your mom does 1?

Every day people start typing more than a billion searches on Google and expect Google to predict what they are looking for. In order to do this at scale, we need your help.

Google’s quality team is looking for talented, motivated, opinionated technologists to help us predict what users are looking for. If you’re eager to improve the search experience for millions of people and have a proven track record of excellence, this is a project for you!

As a Google Autocompleter, you’ll be expected to successfully guess a user’s intention as he or she starts typing instantly. In a fraction of a second, you’ll need to type in your prediction that will be added to the list of suggestions given by Google. Don’t worry, after a few million predictions you’ll grow the required reflexes.

Responsibilities:

  • Watch anonymized search queries as they come in to Google.
  • Predict and type completions based on your personal experience and intuition.
  • Suggest spelling corrections when relevant.
  • Keep updated with query trends and offer fresh suggestions.

Requirements:

  • Excellent knowledge of English and at least one other language.
  • Excellent knowledge of grammatical rules (e.g. parts of speech, parsing).
  • Understanding of the search engine space.
  • Proven web search experience.
  • Good typing skills (at least 32,000 WPM).
  • Willingness to travel (in order to provide local autocompletions) or relocate to obscure places like Nauru and Tuvalu to develop knowledge of local news and trends.
  • Certificate in psychic reading strongly preferred: palm, tarot, hypnosis, astrology, numerology, runes and/or auras.

If you want to see evidence of what they’ve done in past years, check out this About.com page where they’ve collected some of their efforts in years gone by.

I’m heading to Sydney over the weekend for the CCA-Educause Conference. Its focus is Higher Education, and I’m going to see what the thinking is so that I can gauge how we best prepare our students for the environments they will experience in their post secondary school life. There is a library strand for the conference, and I’ll be listening intently to discussions surrounding the future of libraries and the integration of ebooks and new devices.

I hope your weekend treats you well. Have fun. : )

 

1 Comment

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One response to “School’s out Friday

  1. Hi, My name is Lisa May and I am a student in Dr. Strange’s EDM310 class at the University of South Alabama in Mobile, Alabama. I enjoyed reading about and watching your April 1st post. Isn’t April’s Fools a fun day! Google does have some great videos and pranks! I wonder how many people tried the “new email” out before realizing it was a joke? We live in such a fast pace world, I think sometimes we don’t really “see” what we are watching – which in turn can really make us look like a fool! Thanks for the post and the laugh! We all need to take the time to laugh!
    My blog is a work in progress but I invite you to visit and comment! I look forward to reading about your thoughts on the conference you are attending this weekend!

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