Google Doodle Celebrates 20 Years of Searching the Internet—With Hidden Features, Virtual Office Tour

Google Inc may have been incorporated on September 4, but for years the company has officially celebrated its birthday on September 27 with an annual doodle.

Founded in 1998 by Stanford Ph.D. students Larry Page and Sergey Brin, the U.S. search engine giant is heavily promoting its anniversary today with a slew of throwbacks, hidden features and even a nostalgic virtual tour of its first office space inside Susan Wojcicki's garage.

The doodle is focused on global searches spanning the last two decades, from "what will happen on Y2K?" to "how do you pronounce gif?" A new feature under the main bar lets users see what the world has sought answers to for the past 20 years. Did you know, for example, that Tiger Woods was the most searched for athlete of 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013, and 2018?

"Google wouldn't be what it is today if it weren't for you: a curious crowd that comes to Search with all of life's questions," the firm wrote in a blog post. "Today's birthday Doodle is dedicated to you, and the 20 years of searches that represent the inquisitiveness of people everywhere."

Google Search
The new Google doodle is focused on global searches spanning the last two decades, in celebration of its birthday on September 27. Google

Easter eggs in the search results will turn retro queries into modern corrections. Typing "MP3 file" will result in the suggestion: "It's 2018! Did you mean stream music?" Searching for "page me" will bring up: "It's 2018! Did you mean new phone, who dis?". And "What is Y2K?" now results in the correction: "how does cryptocurrency work?". There are 17 of these in total, listed below.

The technology firm is promoting 20 notable doodles throughout Google's history.

The Menlo Park office tour—complete with old CRT computer monitors, a piano keyboard and a sign reading "Google Worldwide Headquarters"— provides a unique glimpse into the company's low-budget origins. One whiteboard contains a homage to Google's logo back in 1998.

Google office tour
The Menlo Park office tour—complete with old CRT computer monitors, a piano keyboard and a sign reading “Google Worldwide Headquarters”— provides a unique glimpse into the company’s low budget origins. Google

Want to try out the hidden search terms for yourself, here is the full list:

  • MP3 file: Stream music
  • Watch a dvd: Streaming subscription
  • Googol: Google
  • Gettin' jiggy wit it: Floss dance
  • Page me: New phone, who dis?
  • Butterfly clip styles: Top knot
  • Soccer world champions 1998: Soccer world champions 2018 (Hint: Two very good years for the France national team)
  • Chat room: Text the group
  • How to tell someone you like them: Swipe right
  • Low-rider pants: How to style high waisted pants
  • Digital pet: Fidget spinner
  • Baby: Bae
  • 143: ILYSM
  • What is Y2K?: how does cryptocurrency work?
  • Screen name: Social handle
  • Clip art: GIF
  • Keepin' it real: Keep it 100

To many internet users, Google is now the center of the internet. And the company is promoting that achievement with a series of (admittedly, self-back-patting) blog posts. "Everything we've done for the past 20 years has been built with you in mind, and we're incredibly grateful for the opportunity you've given us to be a part of your lives," wrote editorial chief Emily Wood in one.

Google Doodle Celebrates 20 Years of Searching the Internet—With Hidden Features, Virtual Office Tour | Tech & Science
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