It’s not even April 1st in Mountain View, but the April Fool’s Day comedy game is already over and I’m declaring Google the winner. Hiring autocompleters? YouTube 1911? Gmail Motion? Chromercise? Ding, ding, ding and ding. Game over. If you’re planning any big pranks tomorrow, skip it.
Google Hiring Autocompleters
If you search with Google Instant turned on, you’ll see a new link at the bottom of the search suggestions. Google is hiring Autocompleters.
That link leads to a job description with this video introducing “Michael Taylor,” who started out as a spellchecker who typed the “Did you mean?” suggestions and then got a promotion to Autocompleter.
Even better is the video for Gmail Motion, a link that shows up on the Gmail login page.
Then there’s the Richard Simmons-esque video for Chromercise, an exercise program that helps your fingers keep up with Chrome’s speed. And yes, there’s a form to “order” a set of those dorky finger sweatbands. (I have no idea if the form is real; probably not, but I did give my name and address. In the name of journalism, of course. The things I do for our readers.)
And finally … or at least, it’s the last gag we’ve found tonight … there’s YouTube pretending to be 100 years old with a guest blog post from President Taft and a recap of the Top 5 Viral Videos of 1911.
So that one’s kinda weak, but I say Google hit a home run with the first three. Mrs. McGee was in stitches watching them, so Google passes the “regular person” test with flying colors. They win April Fool’s Day 2011. Well played, Google. Well played.
Postscript: Looks like another gag here, as Google “announces” that it will shift to the Comic Sans font across all web properties on April 4th. Riiiiiight.
A couple more have come in via the comments below (thx!), including “new” old-school display ad formats like “Punch the monkey” and “Click here for smileys.”
And Google UK got its April Fool’s mojo on with Google Translate for Animals, an Android app (not really, duh) that tells you what your pets/animals said in human language.