Gumbaby

"Google Answers HCI PhD Program."   "OK/Cancel is a comic strip collaboration co-written and co-illustrated by Kevin Cheng and Tom Chi. Our subject matter focuses on interfaces, good and bad and the people behind the industry of building interfaces - usability specialists, interaction designers, human-computer interaction (HCI) experts, industrial designers, etc."
From ok-cancel.com, by way of MetaFilter . Filed under: help me,information seeking,senior,technology —  Comments (0)
somebody mucked up my computer. Please take it off. It is stopping me logging on to my yahoo page. I hateit. I am 81 and cannot cope with it!!!

[later]

For the second time of writing. I want to get rid og Google. Somebody else used my computer. I am 81 and am not interested in it. Please take it away as it is interfering with my Yahoo pages.

[later]

How many mor34 damn replie3s do you weawnt I have already typed in 3. Soi clwear off please’

[later]

canel cancel cancel this cursed Google

It’s comments like these which spawn humor like the Onion’s article “Google Launches ‘The Google’ For Older Adults.” The writer of that article picks up on the seeming inability of many gumbaby captives to distinguish between different text fields on the screen, quipping that TheGoogle “will also recognize… ‘THEGOOGLE’ typed into a Word document.”

As the poster notes, this is a comment thread which, once it was noticed by the MetaFilter community and other communities “doing the Internet right,” garnered numerous parody comments in addition to authentic cries for help. One of them references the Maury Povich gumbaby; in sarcastic all-caps, the poster writes “DEAR GOGLE I HAVE THE BIGEST FAVIOR TO ASK YOU, IT IS THAT YOU CAN HELP ME FIND MY REAL DAD AND A BROTHER THAT I HAVE NEVER MEET.” Actual instances of gumbaby captives requesting parent-finding services of Google itself have not yet been identified. Having seen a live feed of who-what-where-when queries projected on the wall at the Google office, though, I do not doubt that Google staff could probably dig some similar requests up with ease.


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