Being Googled

Dave Wilton dave at WILTON.NET
Tue Nov 5 01:38:22 UTC 2002

>         Google asserts that its name is a play on the word
> googol.  That may be true in part, but I believe it's also
> based on the existing verb "google" (not in OED), which I
> take to be a variation on the verb "goggle" (to stare with
> wide and bulging eyes).  The earliest I've seen is in the Los
> Angeles Times, June 19, 1986:  >>Here, upstairs in Bea
> Dollar's little office, baby Sean is googling and his
> teen-age mom is asking if she can get married.<<

The verb "google" meaning to stare may date to the 80s, but presumably
Messrs. Page and Brin know why they chose the name for their company and
search engine. If they say it's from the mathematical term, who are we to

And the use to mean conduct a search on the web is most definitely from the
name of the search engine, not from a fairly obscure slang verb.

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