By Mina Todosijevic

I set out with the intention of making this post academic and “useful”, as a resource for researching articles. However, I very quickly got distracted by the incredible amount of tricks, games and Easter eggs hidden in Google. After 16 years of Google, I’m sure I have just barely scratched the surface of all of its hidden Easter eggs.

Google is an amazing and beautiful resource for students. I don’t know about you, but I was never taught all these tricks for how to make searching for something easier:

  • If you put words in quotations, Google will only display results with the same words in the same order.
  • You can use an asterisk (*) as a placeholder for words, in case you’re searching up a quote and don’t remember all the words.
  • Searching for something and prefacing it with site: and the URL of a website (e.g. site:utoronto.ca searchterm) will only give you results from that website.
  • Scholar.google.ca will gives you access to journal articles and other reliable sources for research.

For you visual learners, Mashable has a fantastic article with demonstrations of certain search tactics:

A visual guide to Google search tips

Source: Mashable

Reverse image search: You can drag and drop a picture into the search bar to find out where the picture came from.

Bored in class without your phone? Never fear! Google.com/pacman turns the logo into a game.

Google's Pac-Man game

Some other fun stuff:

  • You can ask Google to “Do a barrel roll”
  • Or, what is the loneliest number.
  • Or, how many horns does a unicorn have.
  • Google can help you decide what to have for dinner by typing in Food 1 versus Food 2 (works best with plain/fast food, e.g. Cheeseburger vs Spaghetti)
  • Try typing Tilt or Askew, and pressing “I’m Feeling Lucky” (or click on the first search result)
  • Use the Voice Search (located on the far right of the search bar) and ask Google “Who are you?”
  • Go into Google Spreadsheets and type the word PRIDE, putting one letter at the top of each column
  • You can play the guitar
  • Type in Elgoog into Google, then press “I’m Feeling Lucky” (or click on the first search result). This also gives you access to a few other tricks.

I’ve barely touched the surface of all the games and tricks embedded into Google over the years. Do you know any we haven’t included? If so, let us know on our Facebook page.

Sources: Lifebuzz, Mandatory, Wikipedia, and Mashable