Google celebrates 18th birthday

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Since 2006, it has celebrated its birthday on September 27, but the year before that, had it as September 26.

The company, founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 1998.

Google has celebrated its birthday with a Doodle every year since its fourth birthday in 2002.

Larry Page and Sergey Brin in Google's early days

Larry Page and Sergey Brin in Google’s early days CREDIT: AP

The history of the Google Doodle

The Google Doodle has become a regular event, where the search engine will changes the logo on its homepage to celebrate holidays and the anniversaries of famous people and events. This is the story behind that tradition.

  • 30 August 1998

    First Google Doodle

    The first Google Doodle is born, as founders Sergei Brin and Larry Page head to the Burning Man dadaist arts festival in the Nevada desert.

    They insert the festival’s stick-man symbol behind the search engine’s logo as a jokey ‘out of office’ message.

  • 2009

    The Doodle team is created

    Chief Doodler Ryan Germick

    The Doodles are produced by a team that currently consists of 10 ‘Doodlers’, four engineers, two producers (and three dogs) led by designer Ryan Germick.

    Based at Google HQ, California, they now produce around 400 Doodles a year, some 12 of which will be fully interactive.

  • 4 January 2010

    First animated Doodle

    Google’s first animated logo comemmorates the birth anniversary of Sir Isaac Newton.

  • 21 May 2010

    First interactive Doodle

    Google’s celebration of Pac Man’s creation becomes so wildly popular that the interactive logo is eventually given its own permanent page.

  • 16 April 2011

    First live-action Doodle

    Google makes a silent movie in celebration of Charlie Chaplin’s 122nd birth anniversary.

  • 9 June 2011

    Most popular Doodle to date

    A playable guitar in celebration of Les Paul’s birthday becomes the most popular Doodle of all time.

    Over 48 hours US users create 5.1 years of music – over 40 million tracks.

  • 2014

    D-Day Doodle blunder

    Google apologises after a Google Doodle honouring a Japanese Go player was uploaded on the 70th anniversary of D-Day in error.

    The picture was later taken down and replaced with a Remembering D-Day link, free from pictures, to the search engine’s Cultural Institute.

    Peter Barron, the search engine’s director of communications, said: “Unfortunately a technical error crept in and for a short period this morning an international doodle also appeared. We’re sorry for the mistake, and we’re proud to honour those who took part in D-Day.”

  • 2016

    90th Anniversary of the first demonstration of Television

    Google celebrates the 90th anniversary of the day “an eccentric Scottish inventor herded a small group of Royal Institution scientists into his London apartment and showed them the future.”

    John Logie Baird, who’d been working on a “televisor” apparatus for much of his career, was the first person to publicly demonstrate the system that would spawn the modern-day television. His discovery sent shockwaves through the scientific community, and certified his legacy as one of the 20th century’s great innovators.

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