Tuesday, October 24, 2023

SearchResearch Challenge (10/25/23): Three little Swiss mysteries?

 I'm currently living and teaching in Zürich until the end of the year, 

.. here in the heart of Switzerland. I'm teaching for this semester at the University of Zürich--and you only get one guess as to what I'm teaching.  That's right, I'm here to teach the course on Human-Computer Interaction and AI over the 14-week semester.

(In other words, what should we be doing to design and build AI systems so that people can understand and use them.  Hence last week's Challenge about getting LLMs to be useful in search tasks.)

But as a person who's relatively new to Switzerland, I've found a few things that are charming and puzzling at the same time.  Can you help me figure out what's going on in each of these cases? 

1. Why are these eggs colored orange/yellow?  I bought them in the local grocery store where they were sitting out on the shelf, unrefrigerated.  The label on the container says Schweizer Eier (Swiss eggs).  I've seen many different colored eggs from friends who have chickens (blue, green, brown, some with spots), still, this is extraordinary color.  But what's the story here?  What kind of chicken would produce these eggs?  

2. While on a hike in the Alps (near Rigi Scheidegg, if that helps), I came across this flag--and I have no idea what kind of a flag this is. What does it represent?  (It might help to know that the Swiss are a little flag-crazy. There is traditional Swiss flag-tossing (a kind of bucolic, even serene sport... watch the video), and flags seem to abound.  Given the level of vexillological interest here, it must signify something, but what?  

3.  I've seen some interesting vegetables before in farmer's markets before, but this one seems very Seussian to me.  What ARE these things? How would I eat one?  

Of course, we want to know how you found the answers to each Challenge.  Share your search tricks with us!  

Keep searching!  


  1. Good day!

    Interesting and looking forward to find out.

    For Q1, tried [orange shell swiss egg

    In Germany, they have more colors. They are different because are boiled


    In Swiss: Not answer yet


    More questions say:
    In Europe, where this orange color is valued, producers sometimes supplement their feed with xanthophylls derived from natural sources, like marigold leaves, orange peels, carrots, annatto seeds, or green feed like alfalfa.

    1. I tried Q2&3

      Not luck at the moment. Tried Search by image
      Google Lens
      An also tried adding words like flag with 4 hearts, clover flag. List of Swiss flags (Wikipedia shows them)

      Also tried the vegetable, even after reading MNM comment.

      Maybe I just got to used to search with images that need, again, practicing without that tool

  2. The third picture is of cone cabbage. No research needed. I love it. (aka "Pointed cabbage (Brassica oleracea var. capitata f. acuta), also known as cone, sweetheart, hispi or sugarloaf cabbage.
    I googled "cone cabbage."


  3. #3: "cabbage with conical top" --> conehead cabbage
    #2: variations of "red flag with white 4 lobed clover switzerland" to no avail. did find flag of the 4th united states army which is turned the wrong way and not in the right context. eventually used flagid.org to search, also struck out. But finally loosened the search to only include red flag with white and scanned to see the much sharper edges of the maltese cross on the Bardonnex Commune (Switzerland) flag.
    #1 similar to Ramon above, I found similar answers in similar fashion.

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  7. first image - those are some serious church tower timepieces…

    1. That's for sure. The mechanisms are truly impressive.

  8. off topic, but… (not paying enough)
    "Overseeing any wider experimentation with and use of GenAI by journalists across the newsroom
    Staying up to speed with the latest research and developments in the GenAI spacePartnering with engineering and others to vet GenA.I tools, including assessing any algorithmic biases "

    … right… Pandora is out of the box. jinxies, no wood knocking now:

  9. Yep, that video was pretty quick--I had to slow it down to watch all of the moves! :-P

    But I'm glad you tested the natural dyes. Turmeric will work exactly as you describe.