Google celebrates 15th birthday with pinata game doodle as Hummingbird algorithm change rolled out

Google is 15 years old and to celebrate has posted an interactive Google doodle game that shouldn't take too long to pick up, but could get you playing for a while.

It's a take on the traditional piñata game that you sometimes see at kids' parties. The birthday boy or girl has to bash a papier-mache animal or shape stuffed with sweets and the kids then gobble them all up, run around with their coats on their heads and eventually collapse to the floor when the sugar rush subsides. Usually about two days later.

The Google doodle game is basically the same idea. The second "g" in Google gets to hit a pinata star with a stick, controlled each time you press the space bar or the mouse button. If you time it right, you get more sweets come out. You only have a limited amount of swings you can take, so the aim is to get the highest score within the limit.

We found ourselves cursing each missed swing.

As well as its birthday, Google is also celebrating the release of a new algorithm for its search engine, Hummingbird. It has gradually rolled out the update over the past month and claims it will rank sites higher based on its Knowledge Graph, the company's enormous database of millions of concepts and the relationships between them.

It says the search results will feel more natural and that it has been inspired partly by the fact that more people are using voice search with their phones.

How it affects the sites you hold most dear is yet to be seen.



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