Google celebrates 11th birthday

Google's logo on Sept. 27, 2009, to celebrate Google's 11th birthday

Google's logo on Sept. 27, 2009, to celebrate Google's 11th birthday

I’d certainly join in singing Happy Birthday to Google, which is 11 years old today. I discovered this little piece of Internet history when I went to the Google Web site today to do a search and did a double take on the spelling of Google.


Surely Google didn’t have its own name misspelled. A mouseover revealed “Google’s 11th birthday.”

It’s hard to imagine life now without Google.

Google search, gmail, Google docs, Google Reader…

Not a day goes by when I’m using a computer or the Internet on my iPhone that I don’t use a Google application.

As somone who grew up with a set of encyclopedias at home and card catalogs in the school and public libraries, I am so impressed with the power and speed of Google in helping me find out — well, almost anything I can think of.

Today I’m working on a lesson plan that includes Madeline Cheek Hunter’s strategies for direct instruction. With a Google search, I’ve found multiple sources, including her biography and options for ordering her books online.

parks_pbsAs a little study break, I was interested in reading about Ken Burns’ PBS special on the National Parks that will begin tonight. A Google search finds the PBS link to information about the program and dozens of newspaper stories about the program.

And with a Google search, I have found out that Gator quarterback Tim Tebow has been released from the hospital in Lexington, Ky., having been hospitalized overnight after receiving a concussion in last night’s football game against the Wildcats.

When my students ask about some concept or spelling, I may ask them how they’ve tried to find the answer. “I didn’t know how to find the answer,” they often say.

“Did you try a Google search?” I ask.

No, they hadn’t. Assuming we have computer access, the student does the Google search and is amazed at the resulting information.

That’s a reminder of part of our potential teaching ability. Even though our students may have grown up using computers and have used them in ways we haven’t, we can add to the ways they can use the computer. In this case, from doing a Google search to learning to discern between educational sites and promotional sites and paid links.

Happy Birthday, Google.

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