Saturday, June 18, 2011

An advanced search

The other day I was looking for the text of the 1940 French-German armistice in the original German language (don't ask). How could I find it without knowing any German? Here is how I did it:

1. I opened google, my default search engine, and entered the keywords "1940 French German armistice original German text". Among the answers, I did not see the German original, but there was an English translation.
2. I used google translate to translate the words "1940 French German armistice original German text" into German.
3. I entered the resulting string of German words back into google search.
4. Among the answers, there was a wikipedia page: I clicked on it.
5. It was in German, so I could not understand a word of it, but it ended with some references, as wikipedia pages usually do, and I clicked on the first reference.
6. What I saw then was the scan of a text in German, with paragraphs labeled 1 through 24. Since I could see, from the English translation, that the armistice text was supposed to have 24 items, I knew I had found what I was looking for.

I am so proud of myself.

Now, the next challenge: a Japanese text?

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