Google Doodles – the fun, date-driven alternative logos located on Google homepage – may have started as a bit of a joke back in 1998. However, they’ve become a more and more serious element to Google’s layout ever since. Beyond recognizing various holidays for the regions where Google operates, the search engine giant has gone out of its way to recognize a wide array of important people – be they astronauts, musicians, writers, or activists. The most recent addition to Google’s ever-expanding Doodle-recognized lineup is Richard Scarry, famed children’s book author and illustrator.
Scarry is best known for his Best Ever series of books and his Busytown books. Both Busytown and Best Ever were made into children’s cartoons, with Busytown airing on Nick Jr. from 1995 to 2000. The Google Doodle features a scene from Scarry’sBusytown, and famous characters that include Sergeant Murphy and Huckle Cat can be spotted. When you click through to Google’s search engine results pages, the Google logo in the top-left presents Lowly Worm, perhaps Scarry’s most recognizable character, replacing the “L” in Google’s logo.
Scarry was born in 1919 and died in 1994. Over the course of his life he wrote more than 300 books and sold more than 100 million units. Today would have been his 92nd birthday.
Honoring Scarry is not too far out of Google’s way. The company has given a fair deal of Doodle attention to other authors and artists, including recent odes to Jules Verne, Roger Hargreaves, and Martha Graham. The home page isn’t just a place to play around for Google, however. Information recently surfaced indicating Google had patented the idea of the Doodle. Add this to the 271 Doodles put out in 2010, the 95 Doodles released so far this year, and the Doodle 4 Google competition, and it’s quite clear Google cares very deeply about its home page illustrations.