Search engine wonder

I wonder how many goals Antoine Vermette has scored this year? Let me look that up. http://bluejackets.nhl.com/club/player.htm?id=8468535

I remember a Rudyard Kipling quote about Triumph and Disaster. I wonder how that goes? Oh, yes. http://rpo.library.utoronto.ca/poem/3378.html

I wonder when Roger Federer will play next? Oh, there you go. http://www.rogerfederer.com/en/tennis/schedule.html

When I was young, if we happened to find ourselves sitting on our front step surveying all around us, and if we looked up to the sky and wondered, “Why is it blue?” the answer would have involved standing up, going inside, digging out encyclopedias, finding the right volume, and searching for the right word, cue, or entry point to find our answer. Often we couldn’t find the answer. Often it was just too much effort, so we just allowed ourselves to wonder.

These days, answers are a touch away. When my family and I lounge in our house, our conversations lead us to ask questions. Last week we were watching an episode of Top Gear (A car show that’s actually entertaining. Who knew?), and they were test driving a Lotus. We started to discuss just what a lotus was, exactly, and how it looked. My daughter’s friend said, “I’ll look it up.” In less than 15 seconds she showed us a picture of a lotus blossom on her iPhone.

It’s miraculous really.

It’s an extraordinary era for knowledge. We never have to wonder about anything again.

Well, almost never. Some things just don’t have answers—yet. If anyone ever develops an app to deal with the BIG life questions, that will be something.

But, you know, I’m not sure that I want that to happen. Life seems that much richer for the wonder.

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