Google

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Google is an Internet search engine founded in 1998 by Larry Page and Sergey Brin, two Stanford Ph.D. candidates, who developed a technologically advanced method for finding information on the Internet.

The word "Google" is a play on the word 'googol', which was coined by Milton Sirotta, nephew of American mathematician Edward Kasner, to refer to the number represented by 1 followed by 100 zeros. Google's use of the term reflects the company's mission to organize the immense amount of information available on the web.

Google uses an algorithm called PageRank to rank web pages that match a given search string. The PageRank algorithm computes a recursive figure of merit for web pages, based on the weighted sum of the PageRanks of the pages linking to them. The PageRank thus derives from human-generated links, and correlates well with human concepts of 'importance'.

Google employs a farm of about 3500 Linux computers to answer search requests and to index the web about once a month. The index database is several terabytes large.


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