google search 2001.pngIn celebration of Google’s 10th birthday they decided to give us all an awesome glimpse into the past. What they’ve gone and done is bring back the search engine just like it was in 2001. I’m not talking just the looks either… the full search index, too! Any searches you perform on that special page will pull up the same results you would have received back in 2001.

Why is this such a big deal? For me it’s fun because it’s like reading a newspaper from 7-years ago. Just try a search for something like Firefox or Flickr and you’ll see what I mean. Or take a look at some of the examples provided by Google:

Amazingly enough, hidden in a corner beneath Larry’s and Sergey’s original lab coats, we found a vintage search index in mint condition. We dusted it off and took it for a spin, gobsmacked to see how different the web was in early 2001. “iPod” did not refer to a music player, “youtube” was nonsense, and if you were looking for “Michael Phelps,” chances are you meant the scientist, not the swimmer. “Wikipedia” was brand new. Remember “hanging chads“?

If you get clever enough you may find some interesting search results. For example, when searching for the word “iPhone” I came across a ZDNet article talking about a $500 phone that could do email an Internet access, but it wasn’t exactly something you carry in your pocket:

infogear iphone.png

Thanks Google! It was a lot of fun reminiscing over the1.3 billion pages you had crawled back in 2001. Hopefully you’ll decide against ever taking down this piece of history… because 10-years from now this will likely be even more funny!