What is Googlewhack?

Googlewhack is the fun and interesting activity of finding the elusive combinations of two search terms, which are termed to be rare, and thus return a single result on Google. The brainchild of Gary Stock, googlewhack is now an immensely popular activity with many people dedicated to finding the two terms which produce the one page result on Google. Dave Gorman, a British comedian, got caught up in the googlewhacking frenzy while writing a novel for Random House, his publishing company. He made the term and activity popular by touring Britain, USA, France, Canada amongst other places, screening his show, “Dave Gorman's Google Whack Adventure”. Even his book on the same topic, went on to become a bestseller.

The main attraction of the game is to retrieve that one combination of two search terms which produce a single result, out of the nearly three billion Web pages that are indexed with Google. Quoting Stock, "The sweetest words ever returned are 'Results 1 - 1 of 1.' There are entire communities dedicated to the sport, and over time it has become more structured, with rules and points for different variations. Before you run off to find your own googlewhack, it is important to understand some of the basic rules involved.

The words you choose must be legitimate according to Google, and the one resulting page that you manage to get must be a valid webpage, not just a glossary, encyclopedia, dictionary or anything else along those lines. Also quote marks are a big no-no when using two search terms. Not so easy now is it? But that is the challenge which eggs the countless enthusiasts of this intelligent sport. Some googlewhacks made popular by Dave Gorman and others include, unconstructive superegos, plectrum irradiation, blithering clops, dripstone ingles amongst countless others. After gaining popularity these whacks might not qualify as googlewhacks anymore, but they give you a general idea of the kind of out-of-the-box thinking that is required to play this game.

There are some interesting variations to googlewhacking, such as googlewhackblatt, wherein you are required to find a single word which returns a single result on Google, or Googlefight, which is just a comparison of the results produced by Google for two given queries, which are then pitted against each other.

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