DCPLive is a blog by library staff at the DeKalb County Public Library!
Sep 12 2011

A Google a day

by Jesse M

When I was in third grade, I recall my teacher asking the class a question pertaining to a subject that we hadn’t really explored yet (I believe it was geography related).  No one, including myself, knew the answer off the top of their heads.  But after a long period of silence, one of my classmates raised his hand and provided the correct answer.  While the rest of the class had been sitting dumbfounded, my classmate had flipped through his textbook to an as yet unread section and found the answer.  My teacher smiled approvingly and favored us with an aphorism that has stuck with me ever since, “The most intelligent person isn’t one who knows all the answers, but rather the one who knows how to find the answers”.

For today’s post, I’m going to share a website which provides daily opportunities to practice the art of finding the answer using one of the most powerful, and ubiquitous, informational tools available, the search engine (in this case, Google). The concept is simple. Just head to the site, A Google a day, where you will be asked a different question each day (some recent examples: “This Greek goddess of love, displayed at the Louvre, was originally from Milos. What would she have held in her missing left hand?” and “If you picked up Plymouth Rock and held it over your head, how many stones would you be holding?“). Finding the correct answer will often require multiple searches, creative ways of thinking, and use of other Google tools such as Google Maps. If you get stuck, you can ask for a hint, which is generally a suggestion of what search term(s) to use. Once you get the hang of how it works, you can try playing the timed mode to see how quickly you’re able to find the solution.

Have fun!

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