In case you were wondering what they were paying all of those 22-year-old computer geniuses for, Google has announced a breakthrough in search technology. But don't get your credit card out for those Google Goggles just yet: the breakthrough is that Google search is now capable of playing Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon. All you have to do is type in a name followed by "Bacon number," and it'll tell you exactly how many degrees separate that person from the actor.
The new feature is meant to be a promotion for a new search technology called the Knowledge Graph, but if the "knowledge" is that most celebrities are no more than two degrees of separation from Kevin Bacon, consider us already schooled. Here are the results of a few of our searches:

  • Alec Baldwin's Bacon number is 1: he and Bacon co-starred in She's Having a Baby.
  • Julia Roberts also merits a 1, having appeared alongside Bacon in Flatliners.
  • Noted chair whisperer Clint Eastwood's Bacon number is 2: he appeared with Chris Penn in Pale Rider, and Penn appeared with Bacon in Footloose.
  • Cher's Bacon number is also 2: she co-starred with Rhona Mitra in Stuck on You, while Mitra and Bacon appeared together in the execrable Hollow Man.
  • Even film stars of an earlier era are not immune to the siren song of Bacon: Charlie Chaplin also scores a 2, having appeared with Tippi Hedren in A Countess From Hong Kong. Hedren and Bacon are co-starring in the upcoming Jayne Mansfield's Car. (Mansfield is also a 2, so unless they were able to secure the real thing for the shoot, we assume her car is a 3.)
  • Google was unable to provide SFist Editor Brock Keeling's Bacon number, instead suggesting a review he wrote about a bacon milkshake at Jack in the Box.

[New York Times]