Wins and Fails This Week in Geek v. 5
Zombies on TV. Drunk tweeting. Parakeets eating diarrhea. Filthy rich hackers. What do these things have in common? Why, it’s another installment of wins and fails this week in geek, that’s what!
Again. After the bazillionth week trending on Surchur and Google Trends, zombies are still going strong. Of course, this is largely due to the overwhelming success of The Walking Dead, which premiered on Halloween night. The comic-to-TV adaptation drew in the most viewers ever for a premier on its channel, AMC, with over a cool 5 million tuning in on the night and more than 3 million following up the day it was rerun.
Or more specifically, social media sobriety. And just what is that? It’s a plug-in for Firefox that forces users to pass a field test of questions when posting after 1 am, to weed out drunken tweets and other social networking faux pas. No longer do you have to worry about embarrassing yourself in front of your friends, followers, and fans after a night on the town. The rest of the time? You’re on your own.
FAIL: Parakeets (And, by extension, Google)
Really, it’s the Google search query suggestions that are failing in this one, and the popularity of one of the most bizarre searches in the history of the Internet is actually giving parakeets their best week ever. Trending lately has been the query “Why Wont My Parakeet Eat My Diarrhea?”, which was suggested automatically by Google as a query following the phrase “why will not”. Thanks, Google, for giving us one of the most amusing fails in search engine tech so far.
Ever wanted to get paid for breaking things? Google’s shelled out $7500 to industrious hackers who are causing errors in their browser Chrome, as part of new version development. The list of recipients so far reveals a spate of $1,000 payments per high-risk vulnerability bug. Whether you’re digging your hands into the guts of the browser or banging your head on the keyboard until something interesting happens, the pay-to-break initiative is a dream come true.