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Google doodle celebrates search giant's own birthday

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Google's latest doodle on its search home page is not celebrating a famous person or landmark event, but rather the US firm's own 14th birthday.

Google was founded in 1996 by Larry Page and Sergey Brin as a research project while they studied at Stanford University.

Google doodle celebrates own birthday

© Google



Brin and Page saw deficiencies at the time in the way web search results were ranked, and came up with a better system that was based on the relationship between sites.

The domain name for Google was registered by the duo in 1997 but today's (September 27) chocolate cake doodle on the Google homepage marks the 14-year anniversary since the company was incorporated in September 1998.

After clicking on the doodle and being taken through to a search page, a message says: "Happy 14th birthday Google! We hope you like chocolate birthday cakes :-)"

Built using just $100,000 of initial funding from Andy Bechtolsheim, co-founder of Sun Microsystems, Google is now a business with revenue of more than $37 billion worldwide.

Initially growing on internet advertising around search results, the company has since expanded into other areas of digital business, such as the Android software, which is the most popular mobile operating system in the world.

Google doodle celebrates own birthday

© Google



Google Play, the Android storefront that has more than 675,000 apps and games, this week celebrated passing the milestone of 25bn downloads.

The company has also been busy mapping the world for its Google Maps application, including the Street View project taking pictures of city streets and major locations, along with the insides of some buildings and even under the sea.

Alongside organic growth, Google has also built its business through acquisitions, such as a $1.65bn buyout of video sharing site YouTube in 2006, and the massive $12.5bn deal for smartphone and tablet maker Motorola Mobility last year.

The latter deal is part of Google's big move into hardware, including the release of Nexus smartphones and a new Nexus 7 tablet device.

On this score, the firm is increasingly clashing with Apple, which offers the rival iOS mobile operating system, and recently dropped many Google services, including Google Maps.

Google has attempted to change the world by making it easier for people to access and share information, but the firm has also been criticised on various fronts, including for its use of people's personal data and alleged anti-competitive practices.

There have also been claims that Google should do more to 'police' the web, such as taking down pirated material and potentially inflammatory content, such as the anti-Islam film that caused outrage in the Muslim world.

Google has always insisted that the internet should remain free and open, but just this week its president in Brazil was arrested over videos posted on YouTube that mocked a candidate in a local mayoral election.

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