Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Fun Stuff: Watching the Google Sunrise

Google beach themeThis morning, I was following my normal morning ritual of checking my Google homepage for the events of interest to me. I happened to glance at the top of the screen and I saw that a new feature had appeared. "Select themes" it said, beckoning me closer.

What the heck, I clicked on the link.

Google is now offering themes for the banner of your personalized Google homepage. They have six from which to choose. My favorite is "Beach", although "Tea House" is a close second.

"What's the big deal?" I hear you ask. "So you get a pretty picture at the top of your screen." Well, for me, anyway, the cool thing is that the picture changes during the course of the day. This morning, as you can see in the picture above, I saw the sunrise, by midday, the sun was bright overhead. Later this evening was a glorious sunset, somewhat reminiscent of our trip to Hawaii. Now? A peaceful starlit scene. One other nice touch was that the colors of the title bars shifted throughout the day to match the scene.

The "Tea House" theme follows an anthropomorphic Japanese fox as he goes about his daily chores with Mount Fuji in the background. The only reason I didn't choose this theme is that it takes up just a little bit too much space on the screen.

Is this stuff really important? Probably not. Does it contribute to my overall productivity? I doubt it. But it sure is fun, and sometimes that's enough. Plus, I figure that anything that makes technology and the Web more approachable can't be all bad, right?

So, which is your favorite Google homepage theme?


Spencer said...

I was using "Seasonal Scape", but got tired of the cutesy snowman (c'mon Google, get with the program. It's spring!) So I switched to beach to watch the sunrise.

Unknown said...

I agree. I keep hoping the other ones will change. The bus stop one has been the same the whole time, too. It doesn't even change with the time of day. Maybe they're working on it? ;-)