Easter eggs are more than just a fun way to procrastinate (for you and your users). Like an inside joke with friends, they’re relationship builders with your audience — and for companies like Google, they generate a considerable amount of press.
Your website or program can go beyond a pleasant, seamless series of predictable interactions and include a chuckle-inducing easter egg (or two). While a good easter egg (or a whole dozen of them) is a pleasant surprise, an excellent easter egg resonates with your audience’s humor, interests, and experiences, creating a deeper connection through a fun microinteraction.
Because easter eggs are such fun to dip, dye, and hide, it’s little wonder that there’s quite a selection to inspire you — two dozen, in fact. Enjoy the colorful roundup!
24 Endearing Easter Eggs
1. Resizing “Responsive Web Design” by Ethan MarcotteClick and drag the corner of your browser, and you’ll see the illustration respond to the size constraints and illustrate RWD in an entertaining way.
2. Clicking Enso’s LightbulbIf you’re desiring a different color palette (or are just curious), you can simply switch the site’s colors to suit you. Depending on the time of day where you’re browsing from, the site arrives with the bulb on or off. Try it out on mobile, too!
3. Yanking Photojojo’s “DO NOT PULL” LeverHow can you not click something you’re not supposed to? Go ahead, and get a little push down the page.
4. Throwing MINI’s Site in ReverseAfter you type “reverse” (no quotation marks) into MINI’s search box, check out the stick on the bottom left of the slider, and follow the instructions to get an animated and flipped screen. (Thanks, PC Mag!)
5. Waiting Too Long at Herrlich MediaAfter 30 seconds you’re asked to go check out the page, and wait a few more for an additional “Still there? See to it :)” message.
6. Entering Konami Code at GameSpotCNET’s roundup shares the arrow pattern plus B A & the enter key (↑ ↑ ↓ ↓ ← → ← → B A + ENTER) code that brings you to the code’s original game’s page (Contra). For more Konami/Contra code sites, enter the Konami code to access the comprehensive list.
7. Hovering over Wikipedia’s Easter Egg HedgehogThe main image on the “Easter Egg (media)” article gives you a textual hint when you hover over the hedgehog (that looks like a turtle)… then give the critter a click!
8. Expanding Sparkbox’s FooterAfter clicking the footer once to make it bigger, click a second time, then enjoy the switch from “Still Not Impressed?” to clicking the link within “Bruce Dickinson Says: I’ve got a feva’ and the only prescription is more footer.”
9. Zooming into OS X’s TextEdit IconTo read the famed “Here’s to the crazy ones” letter, go to the applications list and hit the spacebar to get a better look.
10. Visiting the Book of MozillaGoing to “about:Mozilla” while in a Firefox browser will show you the crowning document of the browser, which is chock full of strange verses and symbolism for Mozilla’s evolution.
11. Finding Amazon’s Secret ButtonScroll to the very bottom of the full store directory page, then hover your mouse under the copyright info until your cursor becomes a hand, then click. CNET shows how you’ll get to see a thank you letter from Jeff Bezos to former VP and critical player in the Amazon takeover, David Risher.
A Baker’s Dozen from Google
12. Hovering on Google’s “I’m Feeling Lucky” ButtonInvest a bit of time here: Leave your mouse on the button, and you’ll get a slot machine effect with each option you land on (e.g., “I’m Feeling Artistic) bringing you to a related website if you click it.
14. Requesting a Celeb’s Bacon Number in Google SearchDying to know CeeLo Green or Clint Eastwood’s degrees of separation from Kevin Bacon? Simply type “bacon number [insert celeb/actor/actress name]” into your search to find out!
15. Entering “Conway’s Game of Life” into Google SearchTo prompt a proliferation of pixels, this roundup suggests typing “Conway’s game of life” in your search.
16. Asking about Anagrams in Google SearchWhether you type in “anagram” or “define anagram,” you’ll get a clever “Did you mean…” result.
17. Typing “askew” into Google SearchNot sure how to define askew? Need a synonym? Well, no matter how you end up searching the word “askew,” you’ll get a clear visualization of it.
19. Playing “Zerg Rush” in Google SearchThe Wikipedia article on Google surprises includes this game to play (click the O’s three times to eliminate them), which pays homage to the Starcraft game. Enter the words “zerg rush” into the search bar.
20. Searching for “Atari Breakout” in a Google Images SearchWhen it comes to easter eggs, the seemingly neglected Images Search (versus the many Google Web Search goodies) shows it stuff with a fun diversion (shared by Cracked’s roundup).
21. Typing “the Loneliest Number” in Google SearchAs detailed by this list of Google easter eggs, typing the song reference into the search bar brings up Google Calculator — and gives you the correct answer (per Harry Nilsson).
22. Discovering the Inside of Dr. Who’s Tardis in Google MapsThis TechCrunch article shows how Google gets subculture humor with this easter egg, where you click on a double arrow on the street to enter the Tardis.
23. Seeing the Google Street View Team in Google MapsMove down the street a little to the team (complete with “I <3 Street View” banner) that gives us street view, at Google HQ in Mountain View.
24. Using the Konami Code in a Google DocTo get an animated flipping of your doc and the resulting mirror image of it, type the Konami code, using your arrow keys plus the letters b, a, and enter (like in the GameSpot example above: ↑ ↑ ↓ ↓ ← → ← → B A + ENTER).
More Than Two Cartons Worth?
I’m sure there are some easter eggs that are missing from this roundup. Which would you add? Share your favorites below!