Google Doodle - Honoring Special Events

The first Google Doodle was in honor of the Burning Man Festival of 1998. The doodle was designed by Larry Page and Sergey Brin to notify users of their absence in case the servers crashed.

Subsequent Google Doodles were designed by an outside contractor, until Larry and Sergey asked then-intern Dennis Hwang to design a logo for Bastille Day in 2000. Hwang has been designing the Google Doodle ever since. Clicking on a Google Doodle links to a string of Google search results about the topic, which can drive a lot of traffic to unsuspecting sites.

Google Doodle Splash

Google doodle have been produced for the birthdays of several noted artists and scientists, including Andy Warhol, Albert Einstein, Leonardo da Vinci, Rabindranath Tagore, Louis Braille, Percival Lowell, Edvard Munch, Nikola Tesla, Béla Bartók, René Magritte, John Lennon, Michael Jackson, Akira Kurosawa, H. G. Wells, Samuel Morse, Hans Christian Ørsted, Mohandas Gandhi, Dennis Gabor, Constantin Brancusi, Antonio Vivaldi and Jules Verne among others.

Additionally, the featuring of Lowell's logo design coincided with the launch of another Google product, Google Maps. Google doodle are also used to depict major events at Google, such as the company's own anniversary. British novelist Roald Dahl has been featured, with the google doodle logo containing characters and items from some of his books, such as Matilda.

The celebration of historical events is another common topic of Google Doodle including a Lego brick design in celebration of the interlocking Lego block's 50th anniversary. The anniversary of H. G. Wells' War of the Worlds has also been celebrated.

On February 14, 2007, Valentine's Day, the Google doodle featured a chocolate-dipped strawberry that combined the second "g" and the "l" as its green stem. This design gave the appearance that the "l" was missing, thereby displaying "Googe".

In response to several speculations the Official Google Blog, responded: "When you look at the logos, you may worry that we forgot our name overnight, skipped a letter, or have decided that 'Googe' has a better ring to it. None of the above. I just know that those with true romance and poetry in their soul will see the subtlety immediately. And if you're feeling grouchy today, may I suggest eating a strawberry." For the celebration of Earth Hour, the white background was transformed black to symbolize "the turning off of lights".

Google was criticized in 2007 for not featuring versions of the Google logo for American patriotic holidays such as Memorial Day and Veterans Day. That year, Google featured a logo commemorating Veterans Day.

Google unveiled a steady stream of Doodle in 2009, including one with Mahatma Gandhi's face on October 2, 2009, the birthday of Mahatma Gandhi, which is observed by the UN as the International Day for Non-Violence.

On Friday, May 21, 2010, Google created a google doodle to celebrate the 30th birthday of Pac-Man. It is their first (possibly the world's first) playable logo. The logo contains an accurate re-creation of the Pac-Man game that can be played in a browser (it contains 255 levels). On Sunday, July 11, 2010, the 2010 FIFA World Cup Final was commemorated by a Google doodle showing the stadium where the match was played that night.

On Tuesday, Feb. 8, 2011, Google doodle ran one of its most interactive Doodles in honor of Sci-Fi writer Jules Verne's 183rd birthday. "Pulling" on a lever enabled viewers to get a Nautilus submarine's view undersea of everything from divers to treasure to sea creatures, including a coral formation in the shape of the logo.

On Friday, April 15, 2011, Google doodle sported the first video doodles, commemorating Charlie Chaplin's 122nd birthday. This Google doodle was a black and white YouTube video that, when clicked upon, started playing before redirecting to the usual Google search featuring the doodle's special occasion. All parts in this short film were played by the Google doodle team, and special behind-the-scenes footage was to be found on the Google blog.


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