10 Fun Facts You Didn’t Know About Google

by Aman on April 4, 2012

GoogleI use Google. You use Google. Except for 14% of the world’s population, everyone uses Google. We use Google for anything and everything. From checking out spellings to the latest Porn Prom clips, Google dominates our everyday lives. “Google kar le yaar” has become one of the most used phrases in India and the last time you opened up Yahoo!, it probably was on a DVD. In fact, the last time I used some other search engine was when I opened my Hotmail account and now even your friendly neighborhood aunty knows the difference between Hotmail and Hot Male.

So the other day, I was reading David A Vise’sThe Google Story (yes as you might have guessed, I do read some weird stuff from time to time) and decided to go on a troll hunt through the internet to find out 10 fun facts that you might not know about Google. And yes, I used Google to find these facts!

1. Google’s First Ever Tweet

Guess what Google tweeted when it got onto Twitter? In keeping in line with the company’s geeky philosophy, the tweet was as symbolic as it could be, quite literally.

This tweet, sent in February 2009, reads “I’m 01100110 01100101 01100101 01101100 01101001 01101110 01100111 00100000 01101100 01110101 01100011 01101011 01111001 00001010.”

Google's First Ever Tweet

For all those still scratching their head, it’s a binary code that reads: “I’m feeling lucky.”

2. Google Has a Company Dinosaur

Everyone knows that Google is the T-Rex of search engines, so it’s no small wonder to find a Dinosaur replica right outside the main building. The message to competitors couldn’t be much clearer. Come any closer and we’re going to gobble you up

Google T-Rex

3. Moma Knows Everything

If you think that Google knows everything, then you’re probably right. But guess who knows all the internal gup-shup that takes place within Google. It’s called Moma and the intranet is hugely popular with all the Google employees.

Google Moma

4. Google and The Lack of HTML

I always thought Google employed the best software engineers in the universe and I’m pretty sure I’m right! What I didn’t know was that the Google founders suffered from a lack of HTML knowledge!

Google Clean Interface

The clean interface that we so love about Google is not because they wanted it that way; they wanted to create a quick interface which turned into a clean interface all because of lack of HTML knowledge.

5. The “I’m Feeling Lucky” Button Costs Google $110 Million a Year!

Ever notice that ubiquitous “I’m feeling lucky” button on the Google homepage that you’ve probably never used. What if I told you that this small little piece of grey rectangle, costs Google over 110 million dollars a year!

That’s right! What this button effectively does, is that it takes the user directly to the top search result for that query thereby bypassing all the other top 9 results and also the ads that get displayed alongside them. Brin was recently quoted as saying that almost 1% of all Google searches go through the “I’m feeling lucky” button and that costs the company around $110 million in annual revenue.

Google Im-feeling-lucky

So why doesn’t Google take it off? Well, it just did but in such a sneaky way that you probably didn’t even notice.  It’s still there on the homepage but thanks to Google Instant, you don’t get to use it anymore!

Try it and see for yourself.

6. Google and The BackRub

The principle behind Google’s patented search technology has a lot do with the number of backlinks pointing towards a certain page (although this can be disputed to no end) and because of this the very first name intended for the search engine giant was titled “BackRub”.

Google BackRub

Had that name stuck, I would have asked you to “backrub” someone instead of Google someone!

7. Google Bares It All

Earlier search engines and their home pages were so cluttered with ads and information that when Google was testing its bare homepage version with users, a lot of them just sat there staring at the screen even though the page had been loaded.

After a minute had passed, the tester intervened and asked ‘What’s the matter?’ to which they replied “We are waiting for the rest of it”!

In order to solve this problem, the founders had to resort to putting a copyright message as means of a page marker.

google-home-patent

8. The 1st Ever Google Doodle

We all love the amazing and often brilliantly creative Google Doodles but did you know which was the 1st ever Google Doodle and how they came into being?

googburningman

Brin and Page would make a trip to Nevada every year to watch the “Burning Man” festival and the year they founded Google, this “Burning Man Doodle” was put up on the homepage to let users know they weren’t in office and that technical issues would have to wait. Talk about out-of-office messages!

9. Googlers and Nooglers

Most of you might know that the Google HQ is known as the Googleplex and that Google’s employees are normally referred to as “Googlers”. But what you probably don’t know is that all new joiners in Google are called as “Nooglers”.

Googler

So what’s the criterion that separates a Googler from a Noogler? As a rule of thumb, “When you’ve been around longer than 1% of the staff, you cease being a Noogler.”

Oh and by the way, an ex Google employee is called a “Xoogler”. And you my friend are an “Oogler”. Go look that one up!

10. Google Has a Sense of Humour

We all have the perception that Google is one heck of a cool company and I would willingly cut one of your arms to work there! So it’s really no wonder then to know that Google has an equally amazing sense of humour (just like me).

Over the years, Google has loaded its various products including Search with some great gags, goofs and Easter eggs, the latest of which took place this April Fool’s Day!

Google Easter Eggs

These aren’t the only 10 interesting facts about Google that most of us didn’t know; there are probably 100’s more (Thanks to Mashable and other sites for helping me with this research). For a better understanding on this history of Google and all about this search engine giant, I suggest you read David A Vise’sThe Google Story

The Google Story

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Hariharan Valady April 5, 2012 at 8:02 am

Interesting facts- their lack of knowledge of HTML, cost of “I’m feeling lucky’ button, their first tweet…everything is interesting

Reply

Aman April 17, 2012 at 11:23 am

Hi Hari,

Glad to know that you found the post informative!

Reply

Theater balcony April 5, 2012 at 10:46 am

Amazing man, Outstanding post, Very interesting !!

Reply

Aman April 17, 2012 at 11:23 am

Thanks dude 🙂

Reply

liberalcynic April 20, 2012 at 1:23 pm

Good stuff. I had heard about only a couple of these, so it was very informative.

Reply

icyhighs (@icyhighs) May 9, 2012 at 5:31 am

Always wondered about the “I’m Feeling Lucky” thing, never bothered to use it. Well, too late now!

Reply

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