The Veracity of Google

Boyce Tankersley
Mon, 11 Dec 2006 15:10:02 PST
A representative of Google attended the recent Taxonomic Databases
Working Group meeting held at Missouri Botanical Garden and offered
assistance to botanic/taxonomic researchers by giving them space to
store their data. I 'suspect' Google is well aware of the questionable
value of some, but not all, information on the WWW and is attempting to
gather documented scientific data. 

As was explained to the group however, the data would not be searchable
by the public Google search engine - leaving some in the audience to
question the value of copying their data to the Google sites offered
while others appreciated the privacy aspect.

The admonition for the reader to take care applies equally to printed
data. I suspect we can all recall one or more 'references' filled with
questionable information. One of my favorite undergraduate professors
reminded us frequently that anyone with a little bit of money can hire a
publisher to print anything they want - it doesn't make the information
'true' however.

Boyce Tankersley
In cloudy Chicago where the 12+ inches of snow have begun to melt and
the temperatures are no longer in the single digits (F).

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