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Google Has All Kinds of April Fools Day Fun

Google Makes a Ton of Announcements Today

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April Fools Day is upon us, and that means of course that you’ll be fed lies all day long. It’s an interesting day, particularly in the tech, news, and tech news industries, where even companies get in on the fun. Google is no stranger to April Fools tom foolery, and they’ve got a number of silly announcements up today.

Tell us what your favorite Google April Fools prank is (past or present).

First, the most noticeable one: Google has changed its name to Topeka, in honor of Topeka, Kansas recently announcing it would change its name to Google, to get in on Google’s experimental ultra-high-speed broadband project.

"We didn’t reach this decision lightly; after all, we had a fair amount of brand equity tied up in our old name," says Topeka CEO Eric Schmidt. "But the more we surfed around (the former) Topeka’s municipal website, the more kinship we felt with this fine city at the edge of the Great Plains."

He also says the initiative "will have no bearing on which municipalities are chosen to participate" in the broadband project.

Google changes name to Topeka for April Fools

Google changes name to Topeka for April Fools

Google announced a new mobile search feature called, "Where am I?". Go to Google.com on your phone and search "where am I" it will tell you your location. When I checked, I was in Mordor, Middle Earth.

"Note that in this alpha release, we are finding that our results can be slightly off," says Google software engineer John Eric Hoffman. "However, accuracy should improve with greater usage. So if at first the answer is not what you’d expect, please continue to try it over the next couple of days and ask your friends to do the same."

Google launched Google Romance, which let’s you "pin all your romantic hopes on Google." 

"When you think about it, love is just another search problem. And we’ve thought about it. A lot," the company says. It offers users the following: uploading your profile, meeting your soulmate, contextual pre-date advertising, meeting for drinks, the main course, unexpected results, contextual dating advice, and contextual courtship.

Google Romance

Google Voice introduced standard voicemail mode with features like:

- Automatic voicemail deletion
- Numeric keypad access
- Beeper interoperability
- Message maximums
- Numeric page

Google Wave introduced Google Wave wave notifications, which features a human coming up to you and waving to you when you have a new wave.

YouTube introduced TEXTp, a way to watch YouTube videos in text-only mode, to save YouTube bandwidth and money.

YouTube Text Only Mode

Google announced you can now upload and store anything in the cloud with Google Docs. "For example, do you ever wish you could CTRL+F your house keys or your TV remote? Store your keys, remotes, rail passes, and other objects you commonly lose with Google Docs, and you’ll never have to worry about finding them again," explains Google Docs Product Marketing Manager Peter Harbison. "Having trouble moving your piano from New York to California? Upload it from your home in New York, then download it once you’re in California. Change your mind and want to share it with your friend in England instead? No problem. With one click you can have your piano delivered to anyone you choose, anywhere in the world."

Google Books announced that it is offering books in 3D:

Google Books goes 3D

In the UK, Google has launched a new animal translation app for Android

Gmail experienced a vowel outage. Chrome got a new extension:

Taking an earful of inspiration from the HTML5 audio tag, we’ve spent the past few months deep in psychoacoustic models, the Whittaker-Nyquist-Kotelnikov-Shannon sampling theorem, Franssen effects, Shepard-Risset Tones, and 11.1 surround sound research to build a cutting-edge audio-driven user interface for our users, available through a new Chrome extension. With this extension, Chrome will provide audio feedback as you browse to web pages and interact with the browser.

Google no doubt has various other pranks in place in different countries, and possibly others that will be uncovered throughout the day. It’s clear that they’re having a good time with this, and it’s still pretty early in the day. In Mountain View, it’s really early.

Update: Google’s Picasa announced LifeSize photos, Google physicists have discovered an extra dimension in Street View, and the Google Analtyics team is saying that there is only one metric that matters in analytics.

Update 2 : AdSense is now offering Wingdings as a font choice.

What’s your favorite Google April Fools prank? How would you compare these to previous years? Share your thoughts.

Google Has All Kinds of April Fools Day Fun
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  • LC

    OMG..i texted my mom and told her they changed google to topeka..she believed it..as did i, until i dug a little deeper and found this website..well guess the jokes on me..lol good one!

  • http://www.google.com/profiles/markrwalmsley Mark Walmsley

    Google are not only brilliant but funny too!!

  • http://www.sashwindowrepairs-london.co.uk Guest

    We pulled a stunt today and had two newspapers call us up….how dumb is that! Check out our april fools day press release: goggle news search “test tube timber” how could anyone take this stunt seriously is beyond even me. Good luck to all

    • Guest

      LOL – brilliant! I love this part:

      “We can grow full wooden windows within three weeks and the windows have absolutely no joints as they are grown directly into any window shape as desired.”

      GREAT prank!16

  • http://www.sashwindowrepairs-london.co.uk sash window repairs

    Our stunt was a hoax informing the world that we can grow windows and doors to order in test tubes!!!!!

  • http://snickslist.com Sell Your Website

    They changed daylight savings time, Then in January 2010 they changed the date for Aprils fool day. Go ahead, Google it, or Topeka it, You’ll See ;)

  • JR

    Some fool emailed me earlier today, leaving a desperate email that I needed to call Mr. Fox immediately. I called the number and asked for Mr. Fox. IT WAS THE ZOO.

  • http://euphoricdesign.com Donald

    I sent it to some people and told them that the name change must have something to do with pulling out of China. Everyone of them fell for it.

    • Chris Crum

      Wow.

  • Guest

    Frankly, I’m pretty disappointed that Google didn’t rename itself Madison today. We here in the cheesehead state would really like that, and all the University of Wisconsin students would LOVE it!

  • http://forextradingonline-x.blogspot.com/ Mr.Forex

    google is the best search engine

  • http://www.lingerie2order.com Sexy Flirty Lingerie

    I don’t believe anyone mentioned here but this morning on the 1st of April I saw that Google had some kind of Google Translate your animal joke going on on all fool’s day. You may still be able to catch it here at this link:

    http://www.google.co.uk/intl/en/landing/translateforanimals/tour.html

    This was quite comical:

    Quoted from their site above:
    Note: It is not Google

  • http://www.searchsquad.com.au SEO Melbourne

    It comes around EVERY year but we still get sucked in by April fools jokes. Google are hilarious.

  • Guest

    In September 2009 Google changed their pay-per-click (PPC) platform and made both content and search searches default. Prior to that time I had indicated only search based PPC advertising but google didn’t warn advertisers of their change. After several billings their fraud was recognized but do you think they will even offer any review of this heist? They steadfastly stiff-arm me when I request a human to intercede with any resolution. At one point they were willing (it seemed) to communicate with me by e-mail but recently they auto-answered that they would no longer take messages at the e-mail address that they temporarily afforded me. Even while communicating to their once opened e-mail channel I didn’t relent in asking for a verbal discussion of my issues. I can’t get too excited about the april fool jokes even today while knowing that Google (or Topeka) is LOLing somewhere.

  • http://www.mediasmithwebdesign.co.uk Phil Smith

    I was pretty please when I saw the Google Translate for Animals this morning, complete with ties to universities, and slighlty tongue-in-cheek video with the the guy demonstrating it to a farmer! We all knew Google were clever but this is taking funny to a new level!

  • http://idiotnesia.com nurussadad

    Lol, its.. surprise that your in Mordor Middle Earth, I think I am in Minas tirith.. :)

  • http://www.angles-sur-anglin.eu/ Oiseaux

    Will have to be on my guard today, I had forgotten it’s April fools day

  • Mark Green

    My favorite Google April Fools prank was the “new” design they pretended to have for the YouTube comments section where threads were not indented, Up Thumb/Down Thumb tallies were not shown and font size was reduced to where you need a magnifying glass to read and everyone was freaking out that this was going to actually be the new style for YouTube. Nice one Google!

  • http://www.sauvage-feng-shui.com Vicki Sauvage

    My favourite is Google’s missing vowels. Initially I thought it was a virus, then read through the announcement. When they said they were not sure how ‘y’ was faring in the vowel outage I became suspicious and looked at the date they had posted it! Mmm April 1st before midday!
    As it is actually April 2nd here in oz it did take a little bit more time to sink in. You kinda got me!

  • Guest

    I loved todays Daily Candy about men and I fell for it !

  • http://www.moverspackersquotes.com Pradeep

    yes. April fool day is celebrated by all and google in general celibate everything…I wasshocked to read those and then realised ahhh its April 1

  • iksindhi

    yes aslam ali kum – to all team(&)jeay sindhu desh
    how are you all all the google team this is very good search engine and my favourite search engine i happy on this day are you will be statrted google search engine in sindhi language this is your good work but now you given the chance in google search engine sindhi mans
    thanks
    jeay sindh

  • http://stugods3dblog.blogspot.com/ Gueststugod

    Well i did leak it that google had launched a web browser for looking at porn the name had to be
    Go ogle

  • Redlabbey

    interesting but not funny enough to make me laugh!!

  • http://thelandfarcewebsite.blogspot.com/ Guest

    I am not surprised by the April fools pranks and other nonsense by Google inc. But what if someone is doing it maliciously? I have noticed a gamut of articles regarding Google Inc. Google claims they feel strongly about the First Amendment and expressing your opinion. Most people express themselves in a professional manner, others less so. However, when and where do you draw the line with expressing opinions and breaking the law?

    New corporate power and arrogance have influenced Google Inc. to the extreme with there pseudo-philosophy of anything goes whether you have documentation and sources to back up what you are alleging on there websites or simply stating your opinion is another matter, left entirely up to the blogger. Further, whether these statements are damaging, libelous or false, Googles claim is that is up to the user and they will carry all and anything even in violation of state and federal law. Google feels they must protect there users from the law, even when Google Inc. knows that the statements are false or self-serving, malicious and damaging, there corporate cavalier attitude is let the public and those who are damaged eat cake. The offended party is simply informed they must contact the user of the site and lodge a complaint and or track the blogger and take action. Even though Google owns, administers and controls many sites, they wash there hands of any wrong doing. Google