A story from Britain in today’s Guardian is extremely cute. Ben John, an observant if not nosy lad from Wigan, opened his grandmother’s laptop and spied her request to Google to translate the Roman numeral MCMXCVIII into regular numbers (see below). She had seen the Roman numerals as the date when a t.v. show was made. The 86-year-old gran, May Ashworth, had typed “please” and “thank you” into her request.
Apparently Ms. Ashworth, with the manners of an older generation—as well as its ignorance of social media—thought an actual human answered Google searches, and that by being polite they’d help her faster.
Ben, with the savvy of a 25-year-old social media acolyte, posted this on Twi**er, where it was quickly retweeted thousands of times:
I don’t know how Google UK saw this, but it responded!
And then Big Google responded:
Here’s Ben and his grandma: