Google has always been characterized by minimalism. Although not all of its products are 100% minimalist, its search engine has always stood out for its mastery of white and for simply displaying a search box, its logo and, at most, a couple of buttons. Over the years it has been adding new options, menus and other elements, but little by little and without seeing them too much.
So a minimal change in the Google homepage stands out more than usual. Hence the impact and the good reception of the doodles. In English doodlemeans scribble, or in the words of the Oxford dictionary, “A rough drawing made absent-mindedly” or what is the same, “A rough drawing done absentmindedly.” Google doodles are born at the same time as Google itself as a company, since when its first domain is put online, its identity is its logo, which is still a scribble of the word Google.
Officially, however, and according to the official page of Google’s doodles, “in 1998, even before the constitution of the company, the doodle concept emerged when Google’s founders, Larry and Sergey, started playing with the corporate logo to confirm its attendance at the Burning Man Festival held in the Nevada desert. ” This first doodle, drawn up by Google’s founders, Sergey Brin and Larry Page , showed a stick figure behind Google’s second O.
The first of many
However, the first official doodle came to light in 2000 and commemorates The Taking of the Bastille , on July 14, 1789, National Day of France. The person in charge of this doodle was the one who at the time was in charge of the Google website, Dennis Hwang , who for more inri worked in practices at that time. Dennis was in the right place and at the right time, because this first achievement led him to be “official doodler” of Google, creating about 50 different doodles every year, work that combined with his position international webmaster. He was even in charge of the first design of the Gmail logo .Currently, Dennis Hwang works as an art director for Niantic, the company responsible for mobile games such as Pokémon Go or Harry Potter: Wizards Uniteand, interestingly, emerged as a startup within Google itself.
Returning to the doodles, its official website says that more than 2,000 doodles have been created in all these years. Anniversaries, national or international holidays, varied celebrations … Nowadays it is easy to find a new doodle practically every day if we take into account local doodles, as well as births of artists, scientists and relevant figures from around the world. Specifically, more than 9,000.
From the image to the interactive
The first doodles were that, a scribble, a nice drawing that played with the letters of Google. But over time, the team responsible for creating doodles has expanded in number of people. Today, several engineers and illustrators are exclusively responsible for this task, so the doodles have evolved. First they began to link with the topic they were dealing with so you could find information about it. But then came the interactive doodles , works of art in motion in which we can click or press elements that will move and change shape.
The most elaborate doodles are games or activities that, with the excuse of an event, allow us to play or have fun. The most popular in this regard are Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas , which each year are different and better than the previous ones. The Olympic Games are also a good excuse to offer mini-games through their doodles.
The first interactive doodle was the one dedicated to Pac-Man . He went online in May 2010 and celebrated the 30th anniversary of this recreational game and has had a version for virtually any platform, console or device. Created in association with Namco, parents of the creature, doodle was basically the Pac-Man game where the word Google could be read on the game stage. The doodle was so successful that today we can play Pac-Man in Google at any time, as we saw in the article The funniest Easter eggs from Google . To activate it we just have to search for “pacman” or similar in Google and we will see the Pac-Man Doodle with the corresponding Play button.