Search expert Sasha Blair-Goldesohn was walking through Central Park yesterday morning when a rotting tree branch, 4-plus inches thick and 100 pounds, snapped off and hit him in the head. The Google engineer is now in a coma.
When the accident happened, the father of two was en route to work, where Blair-Goldesohn worked on answering natural-language queries like "What is the population of Texas?" (such queries were the focus of his Ph.D. work at Columbia University). The engineer's lung was damaged in the incident and he remains in intensive care.