Adventures in Ethics and Science

David Ng at The World’s Fair wants me to play along before I head to the airport. Here are the rules:

I’d like to suggest a meme, where the premise is that you will attempt to find 5 statements, which if you were to type into google (preferably, but we’ll take the other country specific ones if need be), you’ll find that you are returned with your blog as the number one hit.

This takes a bit of effort since finding these statements takes a little trial and error, but I’m going to guess that this meme might yield some interesting insight on the blog in question.

To make it easier, we’ll let you use a search statement enclosed in quotations – this is just to increase your chances of turning up as number one, but if you happen to have a website with the awesome traffic to command the same statement without quotations, then flaunt it baby! Of course, once you find your 5 statements, pass the meme on to others.

Where I come out on top:

  1. Free-Ride offspring
  2. “What’s a scientist to do when facing this kind of snake pit?”
  3. “feel a little less like Caligula”
  4. “mass quantities of grading”
  5. (on “sad puppy”

The thing is, yesterday when I read David’s post, I immediately did a Google search on the phrase tremendous Luddite. My blog came up as the second result.

So very close.

David tried to help me climb to the top by rigging a Google-bomb from The Science Creative Quarterly … and now SCQ is the number two result for a search on tremendous Luddite.

Is it any wonder I’m suspicious of all this technology?

I have to go churn some butter before I get on the flying machine. More from Greenville!

Your search results, apparently, may totally vary depending on how you set your preferences and what you’ve searched for in the past. For example, biologists searching for “Sean Carroll” are reported to get results for the one who doesn’t blog ahead of the one who does.


  1. #1 RPM
    October 24, 2007

    Dave is linking to an odd page to try to google bomb you — it’s a search page. Maybe if he linked to your front page. When I search for tremendous Luddite, you’re not even on the front page (you’re on page 3). With quotes (“tremendous Luddite”) you’re #3 overall. This page is #1 regardless of the quotes. Must be that odd set-up google has going on for biologists.

  2. #2 Sean Carroll
    October 24, 2007

    Biologists are missing out.

  3. #3 Super Sally
    October 24, 2007

    You’re also # 2 on “eat your planets”,
    and 7th for Uncle Fishy (who knew there were more of them floating around?

    Safe travels.

  4. #4 Super Sally
    October 24, 2007

    And here’s an interesting one:
    for “Tribe of Science” the precursor of this blog pops up 1st
    who’s in the club and why does it matter
    and 2nd
    little white lies
    two of your course work pages 3rd and 4th,
    some interloper 5th, and this blog 6th.

  5. #5 Blair
    October 24, 2007

    Dr. Free Ride,

    I’m going to guess you were going for the strange in this meme rather than the obvious. When I read the “World’s Fair” yesterday I decided to try it out and chose your blog for my test. Frankly it wasn’t hard since four of my first five guesses came out on top and these do a good job describing the eclectic nature of your blog:

    First the obvious: “Dr.Free Ride”

    Then another easy one: “Friday sprog blogging”

    Wasn’t so sure on this one but it worked as well: “Brain-Friendly Giftables”

    Took this one to get a bit harder and was surprised to see you on top: “Having a family and an academic career”

    My final choice missed by a mile…as it was too general: “responsible conduct of scientific research”



  6. #6 Yajeev
    October 25, 2007

    This may be a shameless plug, but if you google “prestigious burrito” (quotes not necessary), my blog is the first on the list. Fun exercise.

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