5 Google Doodles That Slowed Down Employee Productivity


Every now and then the Google homepage brings the internet to a standstill with a great interactive Google Doodle. Today we look at a selection of 5 Google Doodles that kept employees from getting real work done.


5. Google’s 15th Birthday

On September 27th 2013, Google celebrated its 15th birthday in style with a Google Doodle dedicated to itself. The doodle displayed the Google letters at a birthday party, press play and a Piñata came into view. The Google “g” was now blindfolded and had ten chances to hit it. Pressing the space bar the “g” strikes the moving Piñata, and sweets fall out. The more sweets you knock out, the higher your score. We got 144 give it a go and see can you beat us, just make sure your boss isn’t looking.

You can play the Google’s 15th Birthday Doodle here.

4. Roswell’s 66th Anniversary

July 8th 2013 saw quite a strange event been celebrated in the form of a Google Doodle. The 66th Anniversary of the Roswell doodle depicts the story of an alien, who crash landed on earth and needs help putting the three sections of his ship back together by solving puzzles and interacting with farm animals.

The point and click alien adventure can be played here.

3. Les Paul’s 96th Birthday


I cannot play the guitar nor do I claim to but on June 9th 2011 that didn’t stop me as I attempted to string a few notes together to celebrate the 96th birthday of Les Paul, an American guitarist, songwriter and inventor. The iconic Google logo was transformed into an electric guitar that was playable by moving your mouse over the guitar strings. According to Google in 48 hours in the U.S alone, 5.1 years’ worth of music or 40 million songs were created and those songs were played back 870,000 times.

You can try your hand at making music on the Les Paul Google Doodle here.

2. 30th Anniversary of PAC-MAN

May 21st 2010 will always be remembered fondly as the date one of my favourite childhood games made history by becoming the first interactive doodle for Google. The game is just so easy but way to addictive. Simply use the arrow keys to get around the course collecting all the balls without running in to the ghosts. There was even a hidden Easter egg in the doodle press “insert coin” twice to make it a two player game with Ms. Pac-Man joining in the fun. 

If you have a few hours to kill, check out the Google doodle for Pac-Man’s 30th Anniversary here.

1. 40th Anniversary of Rubik’s Cube

Yesterday, May 19th 2014 saw probably the most time consuming of all Google Doodles hit our screen an interactive Rubik’s Cube. It was a lot more complex than the others with its six faces. Just like the real thing after multiple attempts I was forced to retire in the knowledge that without Photoshop I was not going to be sharing my completed Rubik’s Cube with you today.

If you think you can complete the online Rubik’s Cube give it a shot here.

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Google And The Right To Be Forgotten

In a landmark case in Luxembourg, The European Court of Justice (ECJ) today ruled that people have the right in certain circumstances to have information about them removed from search results. In the case involving a Spanish citizen, the court said individuals have the right “to be forgotten”,  where the information being linked to appeared “to be inadequate, irrelevant or no longer relevant or excessive … in the light of the time that had elapsed”. 

Mario Costeja González, had lodged a complaint against La Vanduardia, which is a Spanish daily newspaper, Google Spain and Google regarding the search results that appeared when his name was “Googled”.  The top results for his name included newspaper articles from the late 90’s in which La Vanduardia detailed the auction notice of his home after it had been repossessed in order to recover social security debts. Mr. Costeja González was arguing that these articles on the La Vanduardia website were no longer relevant as the proceedings against him had long been resolved.

His complaint against the newspaper was not upheld as the information was lawfully published at the time. However, the complaint against the search engine giant was upheld by the court. It ruled: “Thus, if, following a search made on the basis of a person’s name, the list of results displays a link to a web page which contains information on the person in question, that data subject may approach the operator directly and, where the operator does not grant his request, bring the matter before the competent authorities in order to obtain, under certain conditions, the removal of that link from the list of results.”

Google and other web publishers will now be required to consider all removal requests and if declined, the requester can take their request to the relevant data protection authority.

A Google spokesperson said: “This is a disappointing ruling for search engines and online publishers in general. We are very surprised that it differs so dramatically from the advocate general’s opinion and the warnings and consequences that he spelled out. We now need to take time to analyse the implications.”

There are currently over 200 cases waiting to be heard against Google that involve Spanish citizens who want personal information about them deleted from the search results.

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Managing Multiple Google+ Pages For One Brand

In the last couple of weeks with the announcement of the departure of Vic Gundotra from Google there was a lot of talk online that his legacy at the company, Google+ was on life support and waiting to be killed off. This speculation was all well and good except for one thing, at the same time that half the internet was planning a funeral for Google+, business owners were noticing that their Google places accounts had been automatically merged into Google+ pages and things were looking very messy.

Some businesses had their main brand page on Google+ where they were posting content regularly. They also had a Google Places For Business account where they managed all the location details for their bricks and mortar locations around the country. Many large businesses with multiple locations like supermarkets, fast-food chains, or retail stores now had hundreds of Google+ pages to manage. These local listings which are very important to brands in terms of driving local traffic and sales to a website were now looking like empty unbranded Google+ pages.

Google+ pages cannot be merged and Google+ also doesn’t support a parent child relationship between pages. So deciding what to do with multiple Google+ pages can be tricky. Firstly we suggest you add a logo and a cover photo to all of the new pages and ensure that the correct information for your locations is being displayed. This information can be edited easily by logging in to Google Places for Business

Options for managing multiple Google+ pages for the one brand: 

  1. Keep the old Google+ brand page and the new Google+ pages for your locations active by posting all content to both. If your business has a national and local presence this makes sense, but it is a lot of work if you have 30 shops located around the country.

  2. Delete the original Google+ Page that you were running for your brand, reposting all the old content to the new local Google+ page. This option is also not very practical if you have 30 locations nationwide that now need individual Google+ pages managed.

  3. Our recommended solution is to keep the original brand Google+ page and all the new local pages. Post all new content to the original brand page as normal and place a once off post on the new Google+ pages for each location directing users to the main brand Google+ page. 

If you find all this a bit too daunting B*Different offer both social media training and account management services, get in touch with us today.

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Why is my website being outranked by a low quality site?

A question we hear all too often here at B*Different HQ. Why is my page rank 6 homepage being outranked by this old page rank 3 website?  

To start at the beginning too many people look at Page Rank, Domain Authority, Page Authority and even inbound link numbers as the be all and end all of their search engine optimisation (SEO) tactics. All of these are important elements but on their own they mean nothing.

Page Rank is what Google uses to determine the importance of a web page, It was developed at Stanford University by Google founders Larry Page (who it assumed to be named after) and Sergey Brin. Page Rank uses links as votes, and every unique link to a web page from another is counted as a vote in that pages favour.  That should mean that a website with the most links should just rank number one organically shouldn’t it?

Well no… With the evolution of SEO over the years, there has always been black hat SEO’s looking to rank quick and fast by any means possible, Keyword Stuffing, Directory Links, Spam Comments, Link Farms, Link buying and Selling whatever it took they did it.

Google are constantly updating their ranking algorithm to make sure that they serve the user the most relevant content. Over the last two years Google Panda and Google Penguin have been hard at work making sure that these manipulative strategies won’t work, when it comes to ranking.

Google’s ranking algorithms take over 200 ranking factors into consideration and is constantly being refreshed. For all the factors we know about there are 10 others that they keep to themselves.

There is no magic trick to ranking your website at number one in Google, but fresh relevant content that adheres to the Google Webmaster guidelines is the only way in which to do it long term, so next time you get an email offering you the number one spot on google for €99 a month or 500 backlinks for €45 just press delete and save your website and yourself from the stresses of getting knocked out of Google Results.

For a brief look into some of the Ranking Factors we know Google use check out this cool info graphic from the team at Search Engine Land.


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Google’s Matt Cutts – Common mistakes made with the Disavow Tool



Matt Cutts, head of the Google Webspam team released this video today discussing some of the most common mistakes people make when using the disavow tool in Google webmaster tools. 

Google launched the disavow tool last October. It’s primary goal was to help website owners who were impacted by Google’s Penguin Update, an update which focused on paid and spammy links. Another use for the disavow tool was to combat negative SEO – to help innocent webmasters targeted with paid links by competitors. 

Matts video today focus’s on the main mistakes Google see:

  • Upload a plain TXT file only as files can be rejected when people upload Microsoft Word and Excel spreadsheets.
  • On first request users are often too specific with links, trying to disavow a link from a certain page on a website when they should disavow links from the whole website, this can be done by using domain:nameofsite.com 
  • Wrong syntax in the TXT file upladed. When using domain:do not use https or www. just “domain:sitename.com”
  • Do not describe the context of the links you want to disavow in the TXT file. You can use the reconsideration request form for this.
  • Manually try to clean up your links without the use of the disavow tool as well, don’t just try using the disavow tool as a short cut. 

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Google – 1980’s style

For anyone who grew up before the invent of Facebook, Bing, or even MySpace, the image above will be quite familiar.  Old ASCII style interface. 

But this is actually a proper Google search – it’s called the Google BBS Terminal – developed by Masswerk and it’s an amazing and retro version of the search engine. 

The home page even returns the latest news stories, accessible by pressing…yes, pressing a key – no clicks allowed!

You can check it out for yourself by visiting the Masswerk site, or else, have a look at the video below.  

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Fancy a Google 360 tour of The White House?

We all use Google Maps – it’s a fantastic tool. The introduction on Streetview a few years ago was an equally impressive step forward.  You could visit anywhere you wanted – at any time. 

However, the latest idea now is to move in from the street inside.  Go to Google Maps, type in ‘White House’ and then click on the Streetview person – drag them onto the White House – and go exploring!

Google Maps have partnered with The White House in order to let the world take the tour – from the comfort of their own computer screens.  

The White House YouTube explains…

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