To celebrate its 15th birthday, Google decided to share a neat Easter egg showing how Google used to look in 1998. To see it for yourself, go to Google and type “google in 1998” (without the quotes) into the search box. Sadly, you can’t do an actual search on 1998 Google.
Google’s Matt Cutts revealed the Easter egg via Twitter:
Here’s what Google’s search results looked like in 1998:
Also note at the bottom where Google invited users to try their query on other big search engines of the day – AltaVista, Excite, HotBot, Infoseek, and Lycos, among others. Clicking on those links takes you to an archived version of those classic search engines.
Aside from all the great search engines options we had in 1998, this was a great year of music with hits like “Backstreet’s Back” by Backstreet Boys, or “I Want You Back” by NSYNC. There were also great tech events like Compuserve becoming a wholly owned subsidiary of AOL and the founding of PayPal.
While you can’t do a search in the old school Google, it is amazing to see how far the search engine has advanced from the 10 blue links to more dynamic search engine, providing universal search items like images, video, and news.
Google also introduced their first special logo, or Google Doodle, in 1998 for Burning Man, an event that co-founders Larry Page and Sergei Brin both attended that year.
Google has had plenty of Easter eggs to entertain the nerds (me included) throughout the years. Some of these were things like asking the search engine questions like [the answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe, and everything], to which replies “42” or [define anagram] to which the search engine responds with “did you mean nerd fame again.” Other things you could do would ask Google [do a barrel roll] to which it would reply not with an answer, but with your screen spinning round and round.
While this maybe a time waster for many, it still show that a huge corporation, like Google, can still have a sense of humor and make time for a bit of fun