In honour of Google’s 21st birthday on 27th September, we’ve compiled 21 fun and interesting facts about the world’s most visited website.
1) It was founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin, two students at California’s Stanford University.
2) Google started life as Page and Brin’s research project into developing a search algorithm which they called ‘BackRub’.
3) There was originally a third member of the team, Scott Hassan, who was the lead programmer. He left the team before Google was official founded.
4) Google’s first office was in the garage of their first marketing manager Anne Wojcicki, who is now CEO of YouTube.
5) The two founders weren’t looking to run a business, so they tried to sell Google to Yahoo in 2002. Yahoo said no.
6) It’s estimated Google’s net worth is now $279.3 billion.
7) Google works by sending content hungry ‘spiders’ out into the world wide web to crawl sites via back links. The content they find is then stored and organised in an index.
8) Once a user types in a search term, Google scours the index to find the most relevant pieces of content that match the searcher’s queries.
9) Google images was founded because of the demand to see Jennifer Lopez’s green Versace dress at the Grammy Awards in 2000.
10) Gmail was launched on 1st April 2004. Because of the date, many people believed it was an April Fool’s joke.
11) There are 40,000 search queries on Google every second. That equates to 3.5 billion searches a day and 1.2 trillion a year!
12) Google bought the video sharing site YouTube in 2006 for $1.65 billion.
13) The first Google Doodle was created in 1998 and honoured the Burning Man Festival.
14) Google have had just 4 logos throughout its 21 years.
15) In 2018, the most Googled celebrity in the UK was Meghan Markle.
16) There’s an urban legend that Google’s name came about because of a spelling mistake of the mathematical term googol.
17) During 1998-1999 Google’s logo had an exclamation mark at the end.
18) On 24th September 2019, there was at least 6.08 billion pages in Google’s index.
19) The fictional language Klingon is a language interface on Google.
20) Google hire around 200 goats as an eco-friendly way to mow the grass around their headquarters.
21) ‘Google’ is listed as an official verb in the Oxford English Dictionary. It was added in 2006 and its definition is to ‘search for information about (someone or something) on the Internet using the search engine Google.’
*Bonus fact*: In the Google headquarters you’ll encounter a T-rex named Stan.
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