Friday, March 26, 2010
Shatner, toupees and Google.
Google (formerly Touple) was created by the William Shatner School of Toupological Studies in the mid-1990s in order to help our toupologists utilize the Internet in their crucial quest to find more information about William Shatner's toupee. The search-engine was later sold-off and now assists users all over the world with finding all kinds of information (much of which has very little to do with Bill Shatner's toupee). One feature of the current Google is called "suggest" - as one types, the search-engine prompts the user as to what they may potentially be searching for.
The "suggest" feature is based on the number of previous users that have searched for a particular set of terms. Interestingly, if one types "does Shatner..." - the number one suggest is "does Shatner wear a toupee?"
And if one types "is Shatner..." - the number one suggest comes up as "is Shatner bald?". This seemingly confirms our suspicions that there are far more amateur toupologists out there than official estimates suggest.
Despite Google now being entirely independent of the William Shatner School of Toupological Studies, our close co-operation continues. For example, the company has pledged to scan each and every book and magazine in the world, in an ongoing project, in the hope of locating all references and information that has ever been printed about William Shatner's toupee.
Thus, a search of Google's news archives can show the number of articles that have been published (and located) each year that contain the terms "Shatner" and "hairpiece" (above) and "Shatner" and "toupee" (below).
As to why certain dates show a peak in interest in Bill Shatner's toupees (for example 1991 - the year that Star Trek VI was released - and 1997), or what about those tantalizing early entries form the 1960s? (perhaps false positives, or perhaps not...) our toupologists are hard at work processing the data...