GBooks and "verklempt" before 1992

Garson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Sat Jun 2 18:30:13 UTC 2012

Joel S. Berson wrote:
> Victor, my results are even more peculiar than what you describe
> below.  None of the "hits" on the first page actually contains
> "verklempt", and one can't progress past page one, whether via 2, 3,
> etc. or "Next".

The Google Books search engine now produces a large number of spurious
matches. When one searches for a specific phrase in quotes the search
engine will sometimes display multiple books that do not contain the
search phrase. In some cases, a supposed match does do not even
contain a single word in the search phrase.

When one searches for a phrase that has been incorrectly attributed to
a famous figure it is now commonplace for Google Books to display
several books written by the famous figure that do not contain the
search phrase. This makes searching more difficult and confusing.

When clicking through the search results one finds that GB often
enters a loop where the same items are displayed repeatedly. Also, the
estimated number of matches is wildly inaccurate.


> At 6/2/2012 01:07 PM, Victor Steinbok wrote:
>>This has been happening since the latest incarnation of GB search. The
>>search routinely inflates the number of hits--sometimes by a factor with
>>three or four digits--when showing more than 10 hits. Usually, the
>>number of hits can be better estimated by a quick look at the page
>>counter at the bottom. I set my advanced GB search to "show 30 per page"
>>and that only started working this year. But the advantage is that the
>>page count on the bottom is more accurate than the projected number of
>>hits. So if the counter shows "1 2 3", then it's less than 90 pages. In
>>fact, as you move along, the count often goes down, as it did in the past.
>>The bottom line, pay little attention to the hit count. As long as it's
>>under about 50000, it's going to be manageable. Any number showing
>>that's above that, and the number of actual hits will be in the hundreds.
>>     VS-)
>>On 6/2/2012 12:35 PM, Joel S. Berson wrote:
>>>But for your annoyance, try searching Google Books for "verklempt"
>>>before 1975. (There are no hits before 1950.) GBooks claims about 612
>>>results, but shows only a half dozen and behaves strangely when any
>>>page beyond the first is selected.
>>The American Dialect Society -
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society -

The American Dialect Society -

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