Google’s Year in Review: Zeitgeist 2012

Google’s Year in Review: Zeitgeist 2012

Google recently debuted its annual end-of-the-year Zeitgeist video – and what a year it was.


The video begins and ends with Felix Baumgartener’s world-record jump. Sandwiched between the death-defying leap are clips of notable events that dominated the news cycle over the past year: the protests in Syria and Greece, the 2012 Summer Olympics, and the United States elections, among other events. Viral hits like Psy and Honey Boo Boo make an appearance, and notable figures like Neil Armstrong, Sally Ride, and Maurice Sendak are memorialized in the video.

The Zeitgest website also includes lists of trending searches per country and interactive maps covering the most searched images, people, events, Google+ hashtags, etc. of 2012.

How did Google compile all of this information? According to its website:

We studied an aggregation of over one trillion searches (or queries) that people typed into Google Search this year. We used data from multiple sources, including Google Trends and internal data tools. We filtered out spam and repeat queries to build lists that best reflect the spirit of 2012.

All of the information is anonymous, nostalgic, and totally fascinating. 1.2 trillion searches in 146 languages were conducted, and the website is a worthwhile experience. Check out the video below and click around the website here.

What were your highlights of 2012? Let us know in the comments.

Scott Kaufmann
[email protected]

Scott is Partner at Lucid Agency and a lover of all things technology, marketing, investing and entrepreneurship. Scott volunteers on the board of the Denver-based Nonprofit Celebrate EDU and as a mentor for SeedSpot (a Phoenix-based social startup incubator).

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