Google is turning 21 years old today and they have created an iconic doodle (and oh boy do we love Doodling!) that shows what a computer looked like 21 years ago to celebrate.
The Google domain was registered by founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page on September 15 1997, and the company was incorporated on September 4, 1998. The eagle-eyed readers amongst you may have noticed that these dates don’t match the day Google has decided to celebrate its 21st birthday – today, 27th September. The reason being is that Google themselves have admitted to not knowing exactly when their birthday is. Quite strange coming from the search engine that can give you the answer to everything.
Google has become a crucial part of our everyday lives by providing the right answers to our everyday questions, earning its place as the biggest search engine. Our beloved answer giving machine, however, wasn’t always called Google and when we tell you what it was called, you won’t believe your ears!
When the founders first got the idea to build a search engine in 1998, their idea was to change how we find answers altogether. They started using backlinks to rank pages by credibility as well as keywords which is something search engines were not doing at the time. Using the way they rank pages as their main feature, creators Sergey Brin and Larry Page decided to name their search engine ‘BackRub’…
Let’s take a minute to imagine how different life would be if instead of ‘Googling’ questions we were ‘Backrubbing’ in public, doesn’t have quite the same ring to it! Thankfully they realised that BackRub was maybe not the best name to represent a tech company and decided to go for something a bit more meaningful.
When brainstorming for ideas, one of their friends mentioned the name Googolplex, which is the name used by mathematicians to reference 10 to the power of 100 or 1 plus 100 zeros. Larry liked the term as it was a representation of what the company wanted to achieve and that was to index all web pages in existence in their search engine.
When their friend Sean was looking online to see if the domain was available for purchase, he misspelt the word Googol and wrote Google.com instead. The founders saw the new word their friend accidentally created and ended up liking it enough to make it the name of their new company by buying that domain. We all need a friend like Sean.
Happy Birthday, Google!!