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Google turns Twenty and celebrates 20 years of Googling

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Google turns 20 this month and to celebrate they have shared the most googled things each year for the last 2 decades. Take a look…

 

Can you believe it has been 20 years since the world’s most famous search engine was started? It completely blows our minds how much of life has changed since before Google.

Remember when you had to go to the library to find information? Or whip out a dictionary to spell a word correctly? Or even phone your mother-in-law to get a recipe for something your partner enjoys eating? Well, the search engine changed all that and so much more over the years…

If you need to settle an argument with a loved one or you don’t know something, Google can help you out in less than a second, well, also long as it takes you to type in the information that you are looking for.

People all over the world use the search engine to find all sorts of answers to life’s questions. With the search engine turning 20 this month, we took a look at some of the times Google helped South Africans hack life in general.

5 Times Google helped South Africans hack the job market

Need a new job? Need a new way to get out of your job? Found a job opportunity, but are lacking certain expertise and skills? Here’s a look at how Google has helped your fellow South Africans hack the job market:

Albi found a new career thanks to search – she heard a TV clip of someone making teapots out of clay, Googled until she found the company name. From there she started working with paper clay and today she specialises in sculptures.
Bridget says she’s used Google to search HTML coding solutions for years.

“Google took me from tables to databases, from receptionist to director of my own company. My ever-present coach and mentor. Now, as I start building a new company, Google is there with new ideas and solutions to new problems.“

Sly used Google search to get a job doing Agile, with no experience. Google got him through.

Google search helped me find the job I have now, says Nombulelo. “Got a missed call and searched on Google, called back and the rest was history.”

Nonkululeko says in 2014, she was lonely, having a really dreadful time at work and had not been off the continent. “I didn’t have the money to travel but knew that a scholarship would help me fulfil my dreams, so I Googled and found several opportunities but only applied to one – at Carlton University. What happened was miraculous, I got it and it was suppose to be via correspondence but I was told I needed to spend a month there to attend. Boy, was I happy. I got to travel the province of Quebec, made friends there who we later traveled to Toronto with, and subsequently went to the Niagara Falls. It was an amazing experience I’ll never forget. Eternally grateful and it all started with a search engine.”

5 Times Google helped South Africans hack health and wellness

Need a medical opinion, but can only consult a medical professional in a few hours time?

Here’s a look at how the search engine has helped your fellow South Africans hack health and wellness. *Google does not provide medical advice. It is intended for informational purposes only.

Says Nqobile, “I didn’t know I was in labour. Everything my midwife told me I would feel or experience didn’t happen that way or feel that way. I Googled the “symptoms” while lying on the couch and Google told me to go to the hospital! If it wasn’t for my dear friend Google – it would have been a messy home birth.”

Ayesha says Google search saved her special needs son’s life. “No one tells you how dangerous excessively high levels of jaundice can be and the devastating effects it can have on a child. Had I not been able to Google my son’s symptoms on that fateful morning, he could very well not be here today. The special needs journey is one with fraught with constant worry, fear of the unknown and the most difficult has been trying to find resources and information to treat and deal with my son’s condition. Google is a friend. Without Google search I would not have discovered the life-changing therapy we administer to my son.

Says Sandra, “Google helped me best depression by reading up on alternative methods to improve my mental health.”

Blair says her friends like to tease her and say she is the only person who has ever Googled “How to break up with your doctor”. “But,” she says, “I am not. There are about 80,000,000 results to that question, and I copied my ‘break-up’ letter from one of them. I Google everything, so much so that I don’t even use a calculator anymore, I just Google the problem.”
Tiisetso Googled how to make homemade baby food. “I didn’t want to have endless bottles of baby food stocked up in my pantry, and I was looking for a healthier way to introduce solids to my little one. Not only did Google help with an array of websites and blogs, but it also linked back to awesome Pinterest pages and infographics that I could save with one click!”

5 Times Google helped South Africans hack their studies

Need some crib notes to make you look extra smart while helping your daughter with her homework? You can most probably Google that. Here’s a look at how Google has helped your fellow South Africans hack academics.

Nonkululeko says in 2014, she was lonely, having a really dreadful time at work and had not been off the continent. “I didn’t have the money to travel but knew that a scholarship would help me fulfil my dreams, so I Googled and found several opportunities but only applied to one – at Carlton University. What happened was miraculous, I got it and it was suppose to be via correspondence but I was told I needed to spend a month there to attend. Boy, was I happy. I got to travel the province of Quebec, made friends there who we later traveled to Toronto with, and subsequently went to the Niagara Falls. It was an amazing experience I’ll never forget. Eternally grateful and it all started with a search engine.”

Tina relied on Google search for her BCom Honours Economics paper research – and got a distinction.

Zuko uses Google voice search to translate his Polish ballet instructor’s instructions, which he can’t understand because of his heavy accent.

Nomaswazi didn’t have money to buy textbooks when she was studying, as she was paying for her fees, Google helped her with preparing for her exams – and she passed them all.

Julie-Anne says, “Google saved my life by helping with my daughter’s project on how to turn sand into glass. I found the basic steps and information needed.”

5 Times Google helped South Africans hack life

Need a manual to maneuver through life’s miscellanies? Here’s a look at how the search engine has helped fellow South Africans hack their lives.

Google search taught Denzil how to change the headlights on his girlfriend’s car, which included removing the bumper. He’s since learnt how to service his own car.

Unati says she was chatting to her mom about Xhosa clan names. “I’d met someone who mentioned her clan name but had a different lineage to hers, so I looked up our clan name on Google found so much more information! She too was astonished with the information I found. My mom is wary of using technology most of the time – it was amazing to send her the link.”

Google helped Bonita to connect the dots on her family tree, a lot of which were missing, she says.

Tshepi uses search for outfit ideas, information, fun games – even the meanings of big words.

Google search helped me find the job I have now, says Nombulelo. “Got a missed call and searched on Google, called back and the rest was history.”

In part of celebrating their birthday, Google has set up a website showing some of the most popular things searched each year. For example, the dog is the most googled animal in the world and the world searched for birds in 2018 more than any other year.

In music, Auld Lang Syne was the most searched song of 1999 and Ed Sheeran was the 3rd most searched musical artist of 2017 and 2018.

The website has millions of little facts just waiting to be learned. So happy birthday Google, thanks for making out lives a little easier!

What are some of the things you use the search engine for that you couldn’t imagine living without now? Let us know in the comment section.


Sources: Google’s 20th Birthday 
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Tyler Vivier
Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy. Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

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