Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The number 10 raised to the power 100 (10100), written out as the numeral 1 followed by 100 zeros.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The number 10100, written as 1 followed by 100 zeros.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a cardinal number represented as 1 followed by 100 zeros (ten raised to the power of a hundred)

Etymologies

Coined at the age of nine by Milton Sirotta, nephew of Edward Kasner (1878-1955), American mathematician.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Made up in 1938 by the nine year old Milton Sirrota, the nephew of mathematician Edward Kasner who had asked Milton for the hypothetical number of 10 to the 100th. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • June 30th, 2008 at 10: 32 am googol is 1 followed by 100 zeros. gladyz Says:

    10 Weird Science Facts You Didn’t Know

  • Famously, Page and Brin rented a garage as their startup home and, on September 4, 1998, launched Google Inc, a deliberate mis-spelling of the word googol, the mathematical term for a one followed by a hundred zeros.

    Home | Mail Online

  • In a nod to their geeky roots as children of computer science and math professors, Page and Brin had derived the name from the mathematical term "googol" - a 1 followed by 100 zeros.

    JournalStar.com - News Articles

  • First off, they specifically took the name of the company from the word googol, which is a very large number 1 with one hundred zeros after it, after first thinking of the word googolplex, which is 1 followed by a googol of zeros, as a symbol of the immense amount of data their search engine would search through.

    Comic Book Urban Legends Revealed #155 | Comics Should Be Good! @ Comic Book Resources

  • The name itself springs from a number—a googol is a 1 followed by 100 zeros.

    The Elegant Solution

  • Even more impressive is a googol, which is greater than the number of particles in the known universe:

    Born to Believe

  • Google probably wanted to use 10e100, since that character string means 10 to the 100 power - in other words, a googol.

    Search Engine Optimization and Marketing News provided by Cumbrowski.com

  • A googol is a one followed by a hundred zeros -- or, in technical terms, "a freakin 'ginormous number."

    PCWorld

  • This number, called a googol (just a made-up name), is the largest number with a name.

    undefined

  • The company name is a play on the word googol, which refers to the number 1 followed by one hundred zeros.

    Home | Mail Online

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Comments

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  • Choosing to name the company, 'Google' rather than Googol?

    January 18, 2009

  • What was deliberate, Marco?

    January 17, 2009

  • When spelled correctly, it looks more evil, almost Tolkienish (next to Gorgoroth?), which of course would go against Google's "Do no Evil" credo. I'm sure this was deliberate.

    January 17, 2009

  • How about a googolplex? Googol is the numeral 1 followed by 100 zeros, or 10 raised to the power of 100. A googolplex is 10 raised to the power of a googol! That's a lot of damn zeros.

    January 6, 2007

  • not many people know what a googol is :)

    January 6, 2007