This week Google celebrated it's 18th birthday! That's right, Google is officially an adult and has become more vital than ever. From it's beginning as a dissertation research project of Larry Page and Sergey Brin to its overwhelming integration into our everyday lives, Google has had a wild life. Let's take a closer look at its roots, how it's evolved over the years and reflect on its validity today.
If you're aware of Google's birthday, you may also know that Google hasn't exactly claimed the same date for it's birthday since the beginning. Google's founders were students at Sanford University during the beginning stages of their research project. Due to this fact, Google was housed on Sanford's website and its url was google.sanford.edu. However, Google.com was registered as a domain on September 15, 1997 and the company then filed for incorporation on September 4, 1998. Perhaps it seems that one of these two dates should be celebrated as Google's birthday, but for reasons postulated rather than known, Google released it's first birthday doodle on September 27, 2002. Since this date, Google has stuck to the 27th for the celebration of their birthday and in recent years has even celebrated throughout the month of September.
Despite the dispute on the "true" date of Google's birthday, I feel that due to Google's helpfulness, it's birthday deserves to be celebrated all month long. It's hard to think back to what Google used to look like, including what it was first like when we first used it. Well, to help jog our memories, I found this screen shot by using WaybackMachine of Google's early years:
Does anything stand out to you in that image? To me, it's pretty incredible that its index contained 25 million pages at such a humble beginning, but that number is greatly overshadowed by today's storage of 30 trillion pages. Google's algorithm also continues to evolve and improve, delivering updated information that most closely matches web searches. Over the years, Google has also released apps which have become a standard in our everyday lives. After Google introduced Gmail in February 2006, it wasn't long until they released Google Talk, Google Calendar and Google Page Creator. Over the years, they continued to increase the storage amount, created editions specifically for education, business and government, added many capabilities with Google Drive and, let's not forget the social media hub, Google+.
I hardly go a single day without using Gmail, Google Calendar or Google Drive. So much of my work, relationships and education is tied to those applications and it's probably similar with you. Google started as a search engine I used in my fourth grade class for a short research paper, and has since saturated itself into nearly every aspect of my daily work and educational life. Google has helped me research more efficiently, find great recipes, glean ideas for design and even learn how to crochet. Odds are, Google effects our lives in more ways than we truly know, and it's good to give 'em the credit. Let's celebrate Google for all the ways they have improved the course of our everyday lives.