1. Les Paul
Rivalling the Robert Moog synthesizer, Google celebrated the life of music icon Les Paul by producing its own playable guitar. On the day of what would have been his 96th birthday, anyone who logged onto the Google homepage was able to see Google’s own 10-string virtual guitar, and could attempt to play and record their own riffs using the mouse or keyboard.
Link: Les Paul Google Doodle
On Friday 22nd May 2010, the $120m of the global economy was gobbled up after Google celebrated the 30th birthday of the gaming great with a playable version of the arcade classic on the homepage. The popularity of the Pac-Man doodle convinced Google to give it a permanent place forever.
On the 4th of September 2010, Google recognised the discovery of the molecule made entirely of carbon by changing the second O on its homepage logo to an animated orange ball. By hovering the mouse cursor over the ball you could twist and turn the ball until you realised it was actually time to start searching for something.
Link: Buckyball Google Doodle
4. Charlie Chaplin
Google paid tribute to the silent film star on his 122nd birthday with an animated video that saw a Chaplin-like actor read a Google newspaper, interact with a Google logo and drawing a Google Doodle himself.
5. Freddie Mercury
The Queen front man was honoured on September 5th 2011 to mark what would have been his 65th birthday with a fitting animated Google doodle video that was accompanied by the 1978 Queen classic “Don’t Stop Me Now.”
6. John Lennon
The Beatles star would have been 70 years old on October 9th 2010 and to mark the occasion, Google turned its doodle into a 32-second animated video that displayed images of flowers and a butterfly played out against a short snippet of Lennon's iconic song ‘Imagine’.
7. Jules Verne
Google paid homage to the science-fiction writer on his 183rd birthday by using its homepage to show a view of the ocean from a submarine which was clearly inspired by his iconic book “Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea.”
8. Mr Men
Celebrating the 76th birthday of English author and illustrator Roger Hargreaves, the Google homepage displayed no less than 16 doodles dedicated to the Mr Men books including Mr Forgetful, Little Miss Tiny and the globally loved Mr Tickle.
9. Mary Shelley
Continuing the author theme, Google replaced the standard doodle on the 30th August 2010, with a spooky themed logo to mark Frankenstein author Mary Shelley's 213th birthday.
10. Luciano Pavarotti
The larger than life Tenor who provided the musical backdrop to the 1990 World Cup, replaced the "l" in the company name logo back in October 12th 2007 to mark the Italian's birthday.
11. ZX Spectrum and St George's Day
Stirring a little bit of good old-fashioned patriotism in the loins of T3’s English readers this doodle honoured a man who slayed a dragon and the 30th Birthday of the pioneering home computer which allowed us to do it from the comfort of our living rooms.
12. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
The talented composer, who scored more musical work than most of the current top 10 artists put together, was awarded doodle status to celebrate his 250th birthday on January 27th 2006.
13. Michael Jackson
The King of Pop's twinkling feet moonwalked onto the Google homepage on August 29th 2009 to mark what would have been his 51st birthday.
14. Leonardo da Vinci
The Renaissance man whose many talents included engineer, inventor and architect, was given doodle status on April 15th 2005. Featuring the Mona Lisa and the Vitruvian Man, the doodle marked Da Vinci's birthday.
15. Albert Einstein
Clearly showing a preference for recognizing the most sophisticated scientific minds in history, Einstein was given pride of doodle place on his birthday back on March 13th 2003.
16. Flying balls
Google's latest interactive doodle offering welcomed homepage visitors with an explosion of coloured balls that reacted any time your mouse cursor went near it. No explanation has been given for this latest Doodle, but it has been suggested that it could have something to do with real-time search results arriving in the near future.
17. HG Wells
After weeks of UGDs (Unidentified Google doodles), the tech giants confirmed that the series of themed logos featured on their search engine homepage were to celebrate the 143th birthday of author HG Wells.
18. Alfred Hitchcock
On August 13th 2003, Google said happy birthday to film director Alfred Hitchcock, by placing a bust of his head with a bird perched on top of it, in reference to his most suspense-filled piece of work,"The Birds".
19. Pablo Picasso
Painter, sculptor and co-founder of the Cubism movement, Google immersed his distinctive artistic style into the Google logo on October 25th 2002.
20. The Queen
In preparation for Her Majesty's visit to Google HQ, the special one-day doodle was only featured on the UK version back on the 21st October 2008, as she was shown around the offices where all that innovation and creativity is born.
21. Vincent Van Gogh
The Dutch post-impressionist who was a little too creative with with one of his ears, was remembered on the search engine homepage back on March 30th 2005 to celebrate his birthday.