Google search easter eggs: recursion and the answer to life

An interesting piece worth sharing are two apparent easter eggs that can be found in the Google search: type in recursion or answer to life the universe and everything and see what happens. Apparently, there are more like these but I like them the most.

A search on Google for recursion with spell checking enabled shows you the suggestion recursion over and over again. Another funny query is answer to life the universe and everything which is a quote from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy written by Douglas Adams.

If you have got some time to waste head over to SO for a few more interesting stories about easter eggs in software. For example, one question that pops up in another discussion there is whether one should place easer eggs in software at all. I think that highly depends on your audience but if in doubt you should leave it out.

On the other hand side I find it really refreshing to see that software can be funny or maybe less precise without compromising on functionality. Say, you’ve implemented a messaging system in your web application and the users can write messages to each other. You could insert the exact time a message was sent or in case somebody just sent me a message you could output something like “short while ago” – makes it much more interesting.

That’s the case with easter eggs as well. The above examples don’t break any functionality but instead inspire the user to play around with the search engine. If you’ve come this far that you can place easter eggs in your software, everything is build upon a solid foundation that the users trust and that doesn’t break apart it results in an application that is way more fun to use that it would be without these features.