I was only 3 years old and so was the public Internet. Nobody knew what internet was or how to use it or if it was of any use to them at all. One day in 1995 when a 22 year old Larry Page met a 21 year old Sergey Brin for the first time, they did not know history was created in that moment. In 1995, there were about 13 terrible search engines to choose from. Yes yahoo, you too.
Fast forward to 2016
Can you imagine Internet without Google? If you’re being honest to yourself, the answer is quite probably “NO”. Google is a part of our lives. We use so many Google services daily. Google Maps, GMail, Youtube, and the first thing most of us see when we open up our browsers, Google Search, to name just a very few of the services Google offers and of course, there’s Android, the most popular Operating System on earth that about 86% smartphone users pick up to use all these Google services everyday. But how much do you know about this company which you are giving so much information about yourself than you probably even realize?
Android and Youtube, two of Google’s products and services, are so huge in themselves it will take entire individual posts to talk about them, but we are focusing on Google here. Google is still much bigger just to give you an idea.It is one of the most valuable companies in the world second only to Apple, but much bigger in terms of its reach and potential.
This journey was not easy for Google. In this post we are going to unveil the journey of Google by sharing some interesting facts about your favorite search engine.
Starting with the cliché of facts about Tech giants, the foundation :
1. Google was officially founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 1998.
2. Google search is the largest search engine. Of course you knew that. But which is the second? Yahoo? Bing? No. Youtube. Infact, Youtube Search is larger than all the other search engines combined except of course Google Search.
3. In 1999, the founders of Google actually tried to sell Google for just US $1 million but no one was interested in buying it. Google founders approached internet portal service, Excite, asking it to buy Google for $1 million, but Excite refused the deal. Way to go Excite. We were in luck that Google failed to excite Excite.
4. Have you ever wondered when other search engines like yahoo have full blown websites, why Google’s homepage is so simple? Google founders had limited knowledge about HTML and they did not have website making tools back then to make it flashy. Plus they wanted to test their search engine quickly. Later on they kept the Google homepage as it is because it doesn’t require a lot of loading time and offers better experience for the users which are coming to Google for “SEARCH”. Something most of the other search engines forgot back then and look where it brought them. Even these facts have been googled from around the web not ‘Yahood’ nor ‘binged’. Something to learn here from Google.
5. Google was originally called “BackRub” because it checked backlinks to decide which website was important for the user and ranked them. It was something search engines then did not have.A simple search used to be such a tedious job. Imagine searching for ‘facebook’ today and finding it on the 2nd page of search results. Do you even check out the 2nd page today? In 1997 “BackRub” was changed to “Google”.
6. The name “Google” originated from misspelling of word “Googol” which means the number one followed by one hundred zeros which was picked to signify that the search engine was intended to provide large quantities of information.
7. Google’s first computer storage was made from Lego. It contained 4 disk drives of capacity 10 Gigabyte each, resulting 40 Gigabytes total. Gigabytes sounds so big doesn’t it? Just so you realize, many smartphones today have 64 Gigabytes built in, with support of upto 256 Gigabytes external storage.
8. Google doodles are somewhat of a common thing now which also makes ‘news’ for the Indian media if Google India makes a doodle related to India. But when did this doodle thing start?
The first Google Doodle was an out of office message. Google’s first doodle was dedicated to the Burning Man Festival attended by Google founders on August 30, 1998. It was a way to let people know that Google founders were away from work and wouldn’t be available to fix any issues.
9. Google takes over 200 factors into consideration to deliver the best results for any query and that too in a fraction of second.
10. Google knows about you more than you think, often times, better than you know yourself. But one for profit company, which has so much information about every individual on the planet, its a scary thought for many. Google realizes that and hence their unofficial motto is “Don’t Be Evil”. Thats about as comforting as they can be.
11. Google is the world’s most visited website. Every minute more than 2 million searches are performed on Google. Every day 16% of the searches that occur are ones that Google has never seen before.
12. Google employees are called Googlers and new employees are called Nooglers. Google headquarter is called Googleplex. So yes, you google things but that doesn’t make you a googler unfortunately.
13. Google’s first Tweet was “I’m feeling lucky” in binary.
14. You don’t need degree to join Google. Google has found test scores to be “worthless as criteria for hiring”. They have teams where 14% of their employees haven’t gone to college.
15. In 2006, the Merriam-Webster and Oxford English dictionaries included the verb “google” in their listings. It means “to search for information (about someone or something) on the Internet using the search engine Google”.
16. I know, the title says Fifteen, but if you stuck here this long, you should get a bonus fact. A lot of us just really see the surface of Google when we use Search, Maps, Gmail, Youtube etc. Google glass, self driving cars, a relatively unknown robotics arm with ‘working’ robots, the most developed artificial intelligence, a part of which you actually use when you see Google Now posting relevant information cards on your smartphone. and a bunch of other things make Google the only company which can actually shape our future.
Do you know any other interesting facts about the internet juggernaut? Let us know in the comments!