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July 23, 2009

Google Helps You Understand Recursion

Google uses the "did you mean" feature, which normally corrects misspellings, to illustrate a nerdy joke: defining the word "recursion" using "see recursion" and pointing to the same definition.


"A recursive process is one in which objects are defined in terms of other objects of the same type. Using some sort of recurrence relation, the entire class of objects can then be built up from a few initial values and a small number of rules," explains MathWorld.

For more information, search Google for [recursion].

{ via Google Blogoscoped }

32 comments:

  1. The funny part is if you keep clicking on the did you mean link, Google can show you slightly different results.

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  2. To understand recursion, you must first understand recursion.

    Not quite sure where I heard that first.

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  3. yeah great feature :-D
    i tried to do that on wikipedia but it didn't let me link to the article itself. ;-)

    is there any good collection for all (search based) google eastereggs?
    like "answer to life, the universe and everyting" or "how many horns on a unicorn"... anyhow, the good old "we can not find chuck norris, he finds YOU" doesn't work anymore :-(

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  4. Nice try. How about this?
    ***
    - What is the difference between 'primitive' and 'blob'?
    - It's like between cake and a piece of it.
    - What piece?
    - See? You got it!

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  5. That's funny! In fact, I'd have to say that's funny as a shirt I once saw that said, "The Department of Redundancy Department."
    I love how Google comes up with stuff just for the fun of it. I think it's great!

    - Chas Hathaway

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  6. For my comment, click the blue # just above here ................^

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  7. Geeks! Nerds Looosers!!! Ahh hahha! Into the locker, Q-ball!

    =)

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  8. and if you click in "did you mean link", still appears again and again (recursively) ... it might be a joke from google

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  9. Doesn't work on IE or Opera. Nerds don't use them? :D

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  10. It no longer works (not just in Opera or IE).

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  11. So they decided it is a bug after all.

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  12. It still works for me in IE and Firefox for me on July 28th 2009.

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  13. it wasn't working earlier, but it is re-working now, in google chrome

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  14. heh, I thought it was a google fail.

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  15. Works fine in Firefox...

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  16. Things like this are what win Google a place in my heart.

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  17. The problem is that is working only every other hour of the day. Regardless of the browser. Just by chance people have been trying it either the wrong hours or the right ones and thinking it is the browser.

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  18. this really made me laugh

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  19. This comment is about this comment

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  20. Lol :] Brought a smile to my face.

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  21. This is funny...I am learning about it in programming class tee hee....I am weird lol...

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  22. http://www.google.com/webhp?hl=xx-hacker

    And more:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google's_hoaxes

    Bye!
    Csepi

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  23. It can take a lifetime to truly understand recursion.

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  24. It does still work .

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  25. recursion is really hard, once you grasp it you wouldn't understand why you didn't get it, I learnt it the hard way. Recursion actually made me cry now that I look back it cracks me up

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  26. In a recursive definition, something is not defined *exactly* in terms of itself, but something slightly different (such as defining the solution to a problem in terms of the solution(s) of smaller instances of the same kind of problem). In Google's case, 'recursive' is not defined recursively, but circularly ... *exactly* in terms of itself. This is not the right definition, and could be confusing. Brownie points for a clever idea, though :-).

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  27. Its actually a good option when we dont know the spelling or the word exactly.

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  28. But I spelled it right!

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  29. well,recursion is as same as recursive function that called itself,so google keep calling the recursion function if you click it

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  30. recursion is a function that called itself,so if we called recursion it will be back to the "recursion" search result.I've learn it at my college...

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