A Googlewhack is a kind of a contest for finding a Google search query consisting of exactly two words without citation marks, that return exactly one hit, no less no more. A Googlewhack must consist of two actual words found in a dictionary. A Googlewhack is considered legitimate if both of the searched-for words appear as live links in Answers.com in the blue bar above the Google results.

Published googlewhacks are shortlived, since when published to a web site, the new number of hits will become at least two, one to the original hit found, and one to the publishing site.[1]

## History

The term Googlewhack first appeared on the web at UnBlinking on 8 January 2001;[2] the term was coined by Gary Stock. Subsequently, Stock created The Whack Stack, at googlewhack.com, to allow the verification and collection of user-submitted Googlewhacks.

Since 2003, British comedian Dave Gorman has toured the United Kingdom, France, Australia, Canada and the United States with a show entitled Dave Gorman's GoogleWhack Adventure and has published a book of the same name. These were based on a true story. While attempting to write a novel for his publisher (Random House) Gorman became obsessed with Googlewhacks and traveled across the world finding people who had authored them. Although he never wrote his novel, he did eventually write a book about his "Googlewhack Adventure" which went on to be a Sunday Times #1 best seller in the UK and has also been published in the U.S. and Canada. A translation is in the works for Japan.

Participants at Googlewhack.com discovered the sporadic "cleaner girl" bug in Google's search algorithm where "results 1-1 of thousands" were returned for two relatively common words.[3]

## Variations

Another way a Googlewhackblatt's status can be ruined is when an entirely unrelated website including the word is created. An example of this is the nonsense word "Bumruff" which originally returned a single result (the surname of a woman living in Ireland in 1911), but once a person on Xbox Live chose the name as a gamertag, the word's status as a Googlewhackblatt was destroyed.

In contrast to Googlewhacks, many Googlewhackblatts and Antegooglewhackblatts are nonsense words that are not in dictionaries and probably never will be.

## Research Applications

The probabilities of internet search result values for multi-word queries was studied in 2008 with the help of Googlewhacks[4] [5] [6]. Based on data from 351 Googlewhacks from the whackstack, the Heaps’ Law $\beta$ coefficient for the indexed worldwide web (about 8 billion pages) was measured to be $\beta=0.52$. This result is in line with previous studies which used under 20,000 pages.[7] The googlewhacks were a key in calibrating the model so that it could be extended automatically analyse the relatedness of word pairs.

## References

4. Internet Search Result Probabilities, Heaps' Law and Word AssociativityJournal of Quantitative Linguistics, 2009
6. Poster Presentation
7. Ricardo Baeza-Yates and Berthier Ribeiro-Neto, Modern Information Retrieval, ACM Press, 1999.