Monday, December 10, 2012

google doodles

there's a new Google doodle up today - aaaaah yeah!

(this doodle is in honour of  Ada Lovelace, an English mathematician and writer who is often called the founder of scientific computing and whose 197th birthday would have been today.) 

ever since i started taking cognisance of the special doodles that'd occasionally go up on Google's homepage in place of their regular nameplate to honour specific people or recognise important calendar dates, i have loved them.

i've been wanting to do a blog post on Google doodles for a long time, and since i was looking for something to blog about today, when better to give you a look at some of my absolute favourite Google doodles? :D

The first Google Doodle ever went up on August 30th 1998, in recognition of Burning Man Festival.

It was closely followed by a doodle for Thanksgiving 1998.
hey there, turkey. don't take offence, but i'm going to eat you now. kthanks.

I hadn't seen either of these illustrations until today (since, you know, I was 5 years old when they were launched) and the differences between them and more recent doodles are PHENOMENAL. Take, for example, the doodle that went up on Veterans Day this year:

...or how about this year's First Day of School doodle?

miles of difference, right? over the past 14 years, the doodles have not only become exponentially cooler from a graphics point of view; animation has become a possibility - not to mention a really cool addition to some of the doodles :) i did some digging (you can, too, over at Doodles for Google) and these are my official favourites found in the archives - with a smattering of animated doodles scattered in and amongst the static doodles (all links to the original doodles are under the doodles themselves, or just click on the image and it'll take you straight to the doodle):

a doodle on (what would have been) Bram Stoker's 165th birthday, to pay homage to the man who created Dracula and whose writing inspired the content of many Gothic novels which followed his.

a phenomenal interactive doodle in honour of the 107th anniversary of Windsor McCay's Little Nemo in Slumberland - follow the link if you haven't seen the whole thing yet, because i promise you won't be disappointed!

a doodle in honour of Julia Child on (what would have been) her 100th birthday (what a legend of a woman - if you haven't watched Julie & Julia you really should, because Meryl Streep is fantastic as the spunky and gutsy Julia Child :) )

the Olympic hurdles doodle (follow the link for the animated version, where you get to make the guy run and jump hurdles! my record was 12.6 seconds - but i still haven't gotten three stars :/ )

the doodle that went up in honour of Amelia Earhart's 115th birthday

the doodle that went up on the 4th of July this year (i love the use of lyrics from "This Land is Your Land" - brilliant :D )

the doodle on the 79th anniversary of the first drive-in movie (follow the link for the animated version, which is AWESOME and makes me think of the time i went to a drive-in - so much fun :D )

a doodle in honour of Peter Carl Fabergé, the phenomenal Russian artist who created Fabergé eggs, on (what would have been) his 166th birthday

a doodle that went up on what would have been the amazing Jim Henson's 75th birthday (follow the link to get the animated version - which is hilariously adorable)

a frequency-wave doodle for (what would have been) Heinrich Rudolf Hertz's 155th birthday - in honour of the German physicist who was the first to conclusively prove the existence of electromagnetic waves.

a doodle in recognition of the 75th anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge (hello, bridge that i love!)

this year's doodle for Valentine's Day (click through for the amazingly cute animated version of this doodle - i can't NOT smile when i watch it! :) )

a doodle that went up on Robert Noyce's 84th birthday - made in honour of the man who was responsible for the invention of early microchips, and who laid the groundwork for all the innovative companies to spring from the Bay Area, including Google.

a doodle on Friedrich Fröbel's 230th birthday - Fröbel was a German pedagogue who created the concept of 'kindergarten' and developed educational toys known as "Fröbel's Gifts", as pictured in the doodle.

a doodle on the remarkable (see what i did there? oh dearMark Twain's 176th birthday

a doodle on Louis Daguerre's 224th birthday, to honour the chemist/artist/photographer after whom the Daguerreotype process was named.

a doodle that went up on Pierre de Fermat's 410th birthday - a full-time lawyer who practised mathematics as a hobby and came up with the tricksy "Last Theorem" - it's worth following the link and reading the Google Doodle people's notes on Fermat and the creation of this doodle, cause it's a laugh and a half :)

the doodle that was put up on Lucille Ball's 100th birthday (oh hi, Lucy - i love you! the charming animated version can be found here - featuring one of the funniest clips from I Love Lucy ;) )

the doodle in honour of Argentine author Jorge Luis Borges's 112th birthday (i read Borges for the first time this year... and i think he's brilliant. i love that they've incorporated labyrinths and libraries - two common themes in his stories - in this doodle :) )

a doodle for the Anniversary of the Ice Cream Sundae (and thank God for that!!)

a doodle to remember Thomas Edison's birthday (how fantastic is this doodle? and how fantastic was Edison?!)

a doodle in commemoration of Jane Austen's 235th birthday (i just finished reading Pride & Prejudice for the second time the other day, and love it even more than i did before - which i didn't think would be possible. "You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you." oh, Mr Darcy...!)

a doodle for Pi Day!

a doodle for E.C. Segar's birthday - the creator and illustrator of everyone's favourite sailor-man :)

the doodle that went up on the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall

the Google doodle for Samuel Morse's birthday (who, erm, created Morse Code, in case you couldn't figure that one out)

the doodle (with a design by Eric Carle - hello, Hungry Caterpillar!) that went up on the  first day of Autumn in 2009

the doodle in honour of Dr. Seuss's 105th birthday (my shoe is off, my foot is cold, Dr. Seuss's stories are made of gold!)

the epic interactive doodle that went up on what would have been Les Paul's 96th birthday - if you follow the link, you can play all sorts of tunes on the Google strings, record what you play, the whole works :D

a doodle recognising the 50th anniversary of the First Man in Space (the interactive version of which allows you to launch the space shuttle - cool, right? :D )

the cool interactive doodle remembering Jules Verne's 183rd birthday, author of the classic 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea

the epic and funny Star Trek doodle, which is animated and involves beaming up :D it was launched on the 46th anniversary of the show's first broadcast

...and finally, let me not forget the doodle in honour of the 30th anniversary of PAC-MAN - which is arguably my very very favourite animated doodle, and which you need to play in order to have truly lived ;)

and since i couldn't include all the doodles i love - there are far too many - here's a composite of a zillion different Google doodles from the past few years :)

awesome, right? :D which is your favourite doodle, friends?

whether they've entertained me with their cool animation and special effects, made me find out about someone notable of whom i'd never previously heard (and there have been so many) or simply wowed me with their really great design, i simply love Google's doodles... and hey, who knows? maybe one day i'll be designing some of 'em! :D

but for now, if you'll excuse me, i hear a game of Google PAC-MAN calling my name...

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