Google googled me!

The cool thing about the business social networking site LinkedIn is that you can see who has tried to look you up – well, at least you can see their company name. I recently stopped at a nuclear reactor in France – one day later someone from the Gendarmerie Nationale looked me up – coincidence?

(And by the way, if they did, think of the technology involved: scanning my vehicle, optical character recognition of the license plate, database lookup to find the owner, running the owner through searches like this – I hope they are using RPA, since it seems a very good candidate for robotic process automation. And if they are not – S’il vous plaĆ®t appelez-moi, et je suis heureux de prendre rendez-vous pour un conseil en technologie! )

Anyway, after “googling” many people myself I felt quite honoured and privileged to be the subject of their scrutiny,

Believe it or not – it’s been a bit over a decade – but if memory serves me right I once spoke with the present head of Google (Sundar Pichai) on the phone, naturally back before he was so famous. I wrote down his name in my notebook – but sadly I can’t find the notebook anymore to confirm.

When memories trigger the senses

My Aunt recently posted a very old advertisement of an American variety store called Woolworth’s. Apparently, she thought they were all out of business – and in America, they are. But not in Germany, as this snap shows:

The key point here is a different one. The advertisement for Woolworth’s – as indeed this real store – immediately triggers a flood of memories involving sights and smells. And not just for me: when I shared this photo with my family, they also mentioned this effect.

There is something about the old “Woolworths” that is hard to put into words. You would walk into one of these stores and be hit by the smells of their inside cafeteria — “back in the day” it was common for any large store to have a cafeteria – but also the sights and sounds.