It’s obvious that I’m way behind on the search engine tricks discovery game, especially with regards to Google Gravity. The more I’m looking into tricks similar to “I’m feeling curious” (tricks within or around the Google search engine) what people online seem to be called Easter Eggs, the more I’m making fun discoveries.
Examining online technology inventions is something I find very interesting and is a significant motivating factor in the topics I choose to write about here.
I had to think long and hard to turn this into an article that you might actually want to read. You should have seen the first version. In fact, I really hope you didn’t because it was a little embarrassing. Thankfully I rewrote the whole article and turned it into the foremost resource. I’m 99.9% certain you won’t find more information than listed here anywhere else.
What is Google Gravity and how to use it?
A general mistake most technology blogs seem to make with this trick is compiling a bunch of different Easter Eggs into one and calling it Gravity Google or something similar.
That’s completely inaccurate. I know of at least 20 different search engine tricks and many of them I’ve blogged about on this website. They all have separate names, characteristics, and unique search strings.
So, what is it then? It’s a representation of the Google search engine homepage where every element on the page is turned into an object on its own and can be dragged or thrown around the page.
The gravity effect comes into play when all the elements fall to the bottom as if they were in a zero-gravity environment. The best demonstration of the trick and my personal favorite can be seen here: http://mrdoob.com/projects/chromeexperiments/google-gravity
Now that that’s cleared up let’s take a look at how this works. This easiest demonstration can be seen by watching this video, but I’ve added instruction below as well. The video is slightly long (3 minutes). I might create my own sometime soon. I just haven’t found the time to do it.
To use the same trick, you need to go to Google.com and search for Google Gravity, click on the website from Mrdoob, wait for a few seconds for the site to load and the trick to commence then Bob’s your uncle!
Keep in mind that the pages are not actually searchable. With this statement I mean to say that as with the traditional Google search engine and the home page you can’t type in a particular string of characters/words click search and see the search results. It is just for show.
How did it get started?
For me, this is one the weirdest Easter Eggs I’ve discovered. I had a few unanswered questions that were bothering me.
Question 1: Does Google endorse this trick or not and was it created by them?
Question 2: If it wasn’t endorsed by them how did it gain such online popularity since it’s talked about all over the internet?
Unable to answer how it gained such popularity, later on, the “Experiments With Google” website fell into my lap after diving deep into the search results, and that was when I saw this: https://experiments.withgoogle.com/chrome/gravity
To clarify: This site, AKA The Google Experiments Project, is a site where programmers submit experiments and tricks they develop with platforms and software such as Google Chrome, Andriod, and WebVR. Apparently, it’s been going on since 2009 and might yield a few excellent topics to write about in the future. Stay tuned on that.
Programmers can submit their work to the website, and in this way, they improve their skills and challenge others to do the same. It’s almost like their program where they award people who find security flaws in their system. That’s how this kid earned himself a nice $10 000 paycheck.
Now we know, or at least have probable cause to think, that Google Gravity was created by a programmer that submitted his/her work to the Experiments Project and later ended up creating a website where people can test and play around with the trick themselves.
If you search through the Chrome Experiments site, you’ll notice the username “Mrdoob” showing up on a few pages. Oddly enough his website, or a website with that name, appears at the top of Google when searching for it.
That brings me to believe that he is the original programmer to implement this trick. You might see another similar website called Elgoog.im, but I like Mrdoob’s version is way better.
Implementing this trick
My programming skills are insufficient, but I’m sure with the correct code you could be able to create a website similar to that of Elgoog or Mrdoob. If you are a beginner programmer, this might be a cool project to play around with. However, as to the specifics of how to implement it, I can’t elaborate much.
I did, however, discover the code for this project on Github that you can see here: https://github.com/wellcaffeinated/wellcaffeinated.github.com/blob/master/demos/google-gravity-physicsjs.html
It seems like a simple HTML file which means you could probably just download the code, create the file, upload it to your website hosting, enter the path into your Chrome browser or whichever one you are using and have your own gravity based website. Keep in mind, I have not tested this myself yet.
Apps related to the Easter Egg
I’ve found two Android apps that are somewhat related to this trick.
The first app is called Google Gravity Tricks and although the App Store lists it as only having 10-50 app installs, a shame really, it’s a cool app none the less.
It lists a bunch of Easter Eggs, many that I’ve never laid eyes on before. It does not only list the tricks but also gives a nice explanation of each which is cool if this type of thing interests you.
The second Android App is called Gravity Home. This one is a lot more popular than the previous and boasts of 100 000 – 500 000 app installs.
What it does is turn your Android phone screen into wallpaper where you can drag around and play with the app icons similar to the trick I’ve been talking about on this page. If you enjoyed this Easter Egg it might be an app worth checking out.
That’s all for now and I have you enjoy the rest of my website!