HG Wells Google Doodle
To celebrate what would have been the 143rd birthday of novelist H G Wells, Google embarked on a series of extra-terrestrial themed HG Wells Google Doodles. The first of which appeared on the Google homepage on September 5th 2009. The HG Wells Google Doodle featured a flying saucer abducting the second “O” of the search engines logo. When users clicked on the HG Wells Google Doodle they were redirected to results for the search “unexplained phenomenon”. The HG Wells Google Doodle was accompanied by an encoded tweet from the search engine’s Twitter handle. The tweet read, “1.12.12 188.8.131.52 15 1.18.5 184.108.40.206.14.7 20.15 21.19” and according to an accompanying blog translated as “All your O are belong to us”.
Ten days later, on September 15th, the Google homepage was once again taken over by an extra-terrestrial themed HG Wells Google Doodle. This time the HG Wells Google Doodle featured a UFO flying over crop circles shaped into the Google logo. Again the mysterious doodle was accompanied by a tweet which contained a string of co-ordinates, these co-ordinates lead savvy users to Woodham Rd, in Woking Surrey. This location was extremely near to Horsel Commons, which was the sight of the first alien landing in Wells’ 1898 novel “The War of the Worlds”.
The final HG Wells Google Doodle of the three part series appeared on the Google homepage on September 21st, the final instalment featured the Google logo, depicted as suburban housing, being invaded by the alien pods and crafts which featured in The War of the Worlds. The blog which accompanied the three part doodle series hailed Wells as “an author who encouraged fantastical thinking about what is possible, on this planet and beyond.” The blog which features each of the three doodles can be accessed by clicking here.
H. G., or Herbert George, Wells was born in the town of Bromley on September 29th 1866. In his early career, Wells experienced numerous failures as he found himself unable to work as a draper and later as a chemist’s assistant. Following these failures, he returned to Uppark, a country house in Sussex, where his mother was working as a maid. Whilst here, Wells indulged in the house’s extensive library, reading classical works including More’s Utopia and Plato’s Republic.
Although best known for his science fiction classics, Wells wrote numerous novels and pieces of nonfiction during an extremely productive writing career which spanned over three decades.
His bestselling science fiction novels include, “The War of the Worlds”, “The Invisible Man”, “The First Men in the Moon”, “The Time Machine” and “The Island of Doctor Moreau”.
His non-fiction work includes, “The History of Mr Polly” and “The Outline of History”.
Although the work received mixed reviews from academic historians, many hail it as the beginning of a new era of popularised history. Wells’ other nonfiction ventures include “The Science of Life” published 1930 and “Anticipations of the Reaction of Mechanical and the Scientific Process upon Human Life and Thought”, which was his first nonfictional outing published in 1901. An author of great insight, Wells predicted in the novel “The Shape of Things to Come”, published 1933, that a second global war would commence in January 1940. An astute prediction which was a mere four months late as the Second World War broke out in September 1939.
Numerous film and television adaptations have been made of “The War of the Worlds”. The first of which was released in 1953, Steven Speilberg directed another film based adaptation of the book which was released in 2005.
Wells died of unknown causes aged 79 on the 13th August 1946. Other famous authors and novelists have received Google Doodles paying tribute to their achievements, among these are Jane Austen, Mark Twain and Oscar Wilde.