Google Lied To Me

I sometimes noodle around on google while my students take their quizzes. Our current topic was quadratic functions so I did an image search on “parabola.” This is what I got.

Google Images Parabolas

Google Images Parabolas

I am so offended.  I had been telling students that a parabola was a special type of arc with special properties and had made a point of distinguishing it from a catenary curve like that of the St. Louis Gateway Arch.  Yet here was the St. Louis arch, random curvy things,  rainbows (later in the image list) etc.  This is a demonstrations of the fallacy of crowd-sourcing.  As Charlie Brown would say, “Aaugh!”


About jrh794

I am a sixty-five year old math instructor at Southern Oregon University. I taught at the College of the Siskiyous in Weed California for twenty-six years. Prior to that I worked as a computer programmer, carpenter and in various other jobs. I graduated from Rice University in 1967 and have a MS in Operations Research from Stanford. In the past I have hand-built a stone house and taken long solo bicycle tours. Now I ride my mountain bike and play golf for recreation.
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