Google officially turns 15 today. For the first time, the search giant is wishing itself a happy birthday with a playable Google Doodle in which you play as the lowercase "g" in Google's name and whack a piñata to score as much candy as possible.
To kick off the game, click on the play button located on the 15th birthday cake. A star-shaped Google-colored piñata will appear, and the lower-case "g" now appears blind-folded and wielding a stick, as the other letters bounce and watch.
Using the space bar or your mouse, you have 10 chances to whack the piñata as hard as you can and knock out virtual pieces of candy. Every time you hit the piñata, with the exception of the very first time, pieces of candy in Google-colored wrappers will fall into a pile in the back yard scene.
After you've taken all your swings, Google will give you your score and let you share your score on Google+, go to search, or play again.
While Google has given us better playable Doodles in the past, such as the Les Paul Doodle and Pac-Man, it's still a pretty addictive game that makes you want to keep trying to beat your score. Hey, at least it's Friday!
In addition to today's playable Google Doodle, Google also revealed a 15th birthday Easter egg, which lets you see what Google used to look like in 1998.
But bigger and far more important than that, Google announced one of the biggest overhauls to its search engine in years – and did so from the garage where Google began 15 years ago. The algorithmic update, dubbed Hummingbird, aims to deliver better results to users for more complex search queries and has actually been running for about a month now.
As we've mentioned in previous years, the day Google celebrates its birthday has moved through the years. Since 2005, Google has celebrated its birthday on September 27th, even though Google filed for incorporation on September 4, 1998, was established three days later on September 7, and the Google.com domain was registered September 15.
The first Doodle dedicated to Google's own birthday appeared on Sept. 27, 2002, for their fourth birthday.
Here's a look back at how Google has celebrated its birthday through the years:
Sept. 27, 2012
Sept. 27, 2011
Sept. 27, 2010
Sept. 27, 2009
Sept. 27, 2008
Sept. 27, 2007
Sept. 27, 2006
Sept. 27, 2005
Sept. 7, 2004
Sept. 7, 2003
Sept. 27, 2002
Happy 15th birthday, Google!
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