Google Doodles Are Fun!
Last week, Google's playable guitar doodle in honor of what would have been Les Paul's 96th birthday quickly went viral, earning a second-day holdover and its own permanent URL. According to some estimates, over 5 million hours and $100 million worth of productivity were wasted on the doodle on the first day alone. This, of course, depends on how you define the word "wasted." Besides being an ideal procrastination tool, the doodle produced a number of compositions ranging from the Beatles and Lady GaGa to the Indian national anthem.
Of course, other doodles have wasted our time or brightened our days over the past few years. Let's look at some of them, starting with the second-most popular one (after Les Paul's guitar).
Pac-Man's 30th Anniversary
Rube Goldberg Machine
July 4, 2010 -- Though not interactive, Google's animated doodle celebrating the birthday of both cartoonist Rube Goldberg and the United States was entertaining and prompted plenty of "refreshing."
Nam June Paik
July 20, 2010 -- This cool animated GIF in honor of the famous video and mixed-media artist Nam June Paik probably slipped past you unless you happened to live in South Korea.
John Lennon's 70th Birthday
October 5, 2010 -- Google celebrated the occasion by offering a full-blown embedded video inside its logo for the first time. The doodle appeared normal until you clicked the 'play' button, which launched the video.
October 31, 2010 -- Google celebrated its 12th Halloween by offering a doodle that tells a story as you scroll through five different panels. Zoinks, that's like cool, Scoob!
December 23, 2010 -- Google staffers say they spent 250 man-hours and nearly six months making the 17 holiday scenes in this doodle that Google visitors could mouse over to celebrate the season.
122nd Birthday of Charlie Chaplin
April 11, 2011 -- To honor the silent-movie star, Google's doodle team opted to make its first ever silent-movie doodle via YouTube.
April 22, 2011 -- These days, HTML5 seems to be the standard for Google's interactive doodle construction. This simple but cute logo featured all kinds of animal mouse-over action.
Sergei Prokofiev's Birthday
April 23, 2011 -- Another scroller like the Scooby-Doo doodle, this one was seen only in Russia, the homeland of classical music composer Prokofiev, who wrote "Peter and the Wolf." If doodles were gold coins, this hard-to-find piece would be worth a fortune.
World's Fair 160th Anniversary
May 1, 2011 -- Another HTML5 creation, this doodle featured a magnifying glass for zooming in on a 19th-century fair scene.
Martha Graham's Birthday
May 11, 2011 -- A work of art on multiple levels, this doodle was a team effort animated by Ryan Woodward, choreographed by Janet Eilber, and danced by Blakeley White-McGuir.
June 15, 2011 -- Not long after scoring a hit with its Les Paul guitar doodle, Google achieved another first with a doodles that tracked a celestial event in real-time. The doodle featured a live feed of the moon as it entered a lunar eclipse. The animated image with a scroll bar on the bottom started with a pre-eclipse image of the moon and then moved through a time-lapse of the different stages of the event before arriving at the satellite's current state. Google used a network of crowd-operated telescopes for the image through a service called Slooh.com.