Secret histories

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What does your Google search history reveal about you?

What curiosities, trivia, and secret yearnings are revealed by these questions we ask of the oracle we carry in our pockets. It seems absurd to still call them ‘telephones’. The original Finnish name, ‘handy’ (as coined by Nokia, and used in Germany and China too) seem somehow more appropriate, if a little quaint.

Our outrage at ASIO having access to our web browsing activity is matched by a curious equanimity about the far more detailed personal information we willingly hand over to Google, Yahoo, and possibly Bing (if anyone uses Bing). You do remember clicking ‘Agree’ to those Terms and Conditions when you signed up, don’t you? Whatever. We willingly share our innermost curiosities with these corporations, when we would hesitate to mention some of them to our friends or families. These histories reveal our imperfect memories (especially for the names of film actors, in my case). There’s so much more to remember these days, I tell myself. They are snapshots of the flow of consciousness. And they make a strange poetry when laid out on the page. Here are the searches from the Google app on my iPhone for the past week:

  • lyon house melbourne
  • Luminița Gheorghiu
  • du fermier trentham
  • tiger alice springs
  • darlinghust theatre address
  • healthkit apps
  • chinook
  • brandy afrodisiac
  • acupuncture placebo research
  • luftwaffe uniform colour
  • cherry season poland
  • chloroform risk
  • Orpheus and Eurydice
  • shunga british museum
  • nosferatu original actor
  • rock cage name
  • sweet locust tree
  • noli mi tangere.

What sort of person would that list suggest, I wonder. Your turn now . . . do you dare?

3 thoughts on “Secret histories

  1. Honey dressing, Allwell testing, Herr Blick Northcote, which teeth fall out children, Watts Corner Shoe Store, dilemma, Fisher’s Face Jan Morris, Paul Morgan …

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