Hey Google, What’s Up With The Green L?
While the search engine giant Google turns a youthful 21 this September, without a doubt the company has achieved incredible things in its short lifespan. For instance, when it comes to logos, few are more recognizable than Google. The Google wordmark logo is comprised of primary colors – red, blue and yellow – but then there is that green ‘L’ popping out of the mix. So what’s up with that? Oh, a lot.
The search engine was based on an algorithm developed by then Stanford University students Larry Page and Sergey Brin. Their company, Google, officially launched in 1998. Back then, it was a radical departure from the Worldwide Web and the tech companies that dominated the space – think companies like AOL, Altavista, Web Crawler, Yahoo! and Ask Jeeves. Today, Google is the largest and most used web-based search engine in the world.
In marketing and advertising, color is used as an emotional cue. Different colors can make us feel different things – however, the psychology of color places the meaning of color into general ‘emotional response’ categories. For instance, red can evoke excitement, urgency or passion, while conservative blue radiates trust and security. Yellow is cheerful and bright and optimistic. The Google logo is comprised of those primary colors – red, blue and yellow. Except for that lone green letter L.
The original designer of the Google logo, Ruth Kedar, said there were many different color iterations considered. It was the inspired combination of primary colors with the Catull classic serif typeface that resulted in a logo that was definitely something not seen before – just like Google. The brand colors also pay homage to the original server’s storage, which was built from oversized Legos.
So why is that one letter green? Simple. To show that Google isn’t afraid to break the rules.
Since its inception, Google has been an innovator and a rulebreaker. Google Doodles are just one of the ways the company nods to those values. To date, Google Doodles have replaced the logo more than 2000 times on Google homepages around the globe, requiring a full-time team of illustrators and engineers to fulfill. According to Google,
“Doodles are the fun, surprising, and sometimes spontaneous changes that are made to the Google logo to celebrate holidays, anniversaries, and the lives of famous artists, pioneers, and scientists.”’
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