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The world’s capitals according to Google

Google’s search engine has little trouble letting you know that London is located in the UK or that it has a population of eight million. But it still can’t definitively tell you what the city is really known for.

Ask Google what London is the world capital of and it won’t tell you finance, monarchy, or pillaged antiquities. It will tell you divorce.

Quartz analyzed Google searches to determine what the world’s most popular search algorithm reasoned was the best result for our query about what makes various cities notable.

The search phrase we used was “{name of city} is the * capital of the world” which, by using a star character, ensured that results would include any phrase that followed this pattern. We selected the top result as indicating what the search engine determined was most relevant.

Some of the results are outlandish, “Sichuan hot pot capital of the world” for instance. Others are more expected—”fashion capital of the world” —or even possibly embarrassing, like the city known by Google to be the world’s counterfeit capital.

Most surprising, however, is what Google considers to be a “pizza capital of the world.” That title does not belong to New York, Chicago, Florence, or Rome. In Google’s best judgment, it’s Sao Paulo.

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